When it comes to the rapidly changing business and communications world that we live in, you either adapt or die.
Social media has changed the way companies do business, not just during a crisis, but on a day to day basis. Those that recognize that two-way-communication with your audience is the only way to succeed will thrive, while those that refuse to to move from the one-way communication model will find themselves slowly being outmoded by those willing to listen.
Take the Newspaper industry for example. Those that are resistant to change face dwindling circulation and falling subscription numbers because they have a slow or non-existent online presence and infrequent social media use. While those that are trying to keep abreast of the changes are making up the paper subscribers they loose with a strong online readership and engagement from their followers. (See the New York Times and the Globe and Mail as examples of doing it right) It is the difference between trying to force “the way we’ve always done things” in a world that only recognizes “the way things actually work”. A great example of this is the Newspaper in House of Cards where the Editor in Chief refused to accept the need for online content, blogging and the use of social media to the point where he chose to resign rather than adapt.
It’s not just about being open to change, it’s about being lean and efficient enough to change as quickly as the market. If you get caught on the wrong side, endlessly defending your right to do things as you like instead of how your audience and customer base demands it, you will find yourself quickly out of business. Small businesses (and Newspapers) need to have an online presence. One where their customers can have a dialogue with the company about their products and services and one that is built on mutual respect and information sharing.
Caution: Do not just jump on every single new thing that comes across your dash. Do your research and make sure it gives you a good ROI. If not you may find yourself weighed down by too many social media channels, marketing apps, and time consuming websites.
Not only is an online presence mandatory, but having an online presence that is mobile friendly is imperative for success. Recent studies found that “50% of the average global mobile web users now use mobile as either their primary or exclusive means of going online”. Now, I know what you’re thinking, what does 50% really mean? How many global mobile web users could there actually be? Try 1.2 Billion users; a number that is growing exponentially. That’s too big a number for any business to ignore. For more mind-blowing facts about mobile adoption here is a great infographic by Super Monitoring.
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