Intro to Social Media Week 2 Readings Reaction

In the first week of official reading assignments for this class, we were introduced to some of the many uses for social media on a professional level as well as an individual level.  Throughout my reading, I found myself reflecting on my father’s concrete/ construction company and whether social media was something he could actually use.  What I found through the readings is that with the right strategy, any company could stand to improve their operations by adding a social presence online.

Some of the early readings helped me ask the right questions when thinking about a business such as my father’s construction business and how they might use social media.  Concepts like “find your venue” from the inc.com article showed me that a HUGE social media campaign may not be what a business like this is after, but rather a concentrated effort in one platform might be more helpful.  I was torn on whether this might be a Facebook profile or a LinkedIn page.  Later on, when the concept of the “Big Win” was introduced, I realized this answer may be a little bit of both formats depending on the prospective “consumer” a construction company was hoping to meet.  Do you think construction companies have a place on social media?  Would you research a home builder on Facebook before asking them to build your home?

Later, I found myself reflecting on the dichotomy of relationships social media has created on a personal level as well as a professional level and how we view these sites when we are in those “mind frames.”  I found it ironic reflecting on my early days of Facebooking how 78% of employers would now look negatively on the alcohol and mindless behavior posts that were seemingly the entire purpose of Facebook in the beginning.  We really have come a long way and now we view social media in a personal as well as professional manner.  …but the two can mix.  “Code switching” from another article illustrated the fact that as we post/interact on social media, we are doing so on two levels, and often at the same time. Storytelling was also an interesting way of illustrating this point by showing the fact that successful marketing campaigns often tell a story in order to make a product more relate-able.  Understanding the balance of these two can be extremely important in our social media strategy.  When I first was introduced to social media via Facebook, I thought it would always remain a “personal” outlet.  Now, I find myself even browsing professional outlets in order to form a more personal connection to the company/business.  Do you think social media should be so prevalent in business?  Have we lost an outlet of free speech or a true expression of our personality at the expense of universal presence online?

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7 thoughts on “Intro to Social Media Week 2 Readings Reaction

  1. Hi Jake, I definitely think that every kind of business has a place on social media including a construction company. If not for what content they alone provide, I would like to see what kind of feedback previous customers have provided. Also, I would suggest that any company who wants to come up in search rankings, should maintain their own social media presence to stay relevant. I wouldn’t necessarily keep posts stagnant by promoting the business only, but make it likeable by providing quality content that makes it relevant to the community they are reaching out to, in this case homeowners. Let me know what you think.

  2. Jake, I agree with Amanda. Every business has a place on social media. With the majority of consumers tapping into their social media accounts at least once a day, you can’t sacrifice the opportunity to interact and engage with them by bot having a social media presence. Your personal brand is a value to any business brand. Keeping it personal by engaging as an individual that works for said company is a great way to find balance.

    • Thanks you two! I do think there is a place for his company on social media, I just still wonder where that place is. After the lectures, I think a construction company would do well to at least have a presence so others can talk about their experiences with the company as Amanda mentioned. I just hope there’s enough people out there who want to share their experiences with a concrete company! haha

  3. You asked if we “have lost an outlet of free speech or a true expression of our personality at the expense of universal presence online?”

    I would argue many people have lost themselves along the social media path. I tend to self-censor a lot on social media platforms whereas I would react differently in real life. I know that once something is on the Internet, it’s there for good. Sure, a tweet can be removed but what happens if someone takes a screenshot prior to the tweet’s removal?

    If I censor myself, I’m sure others feel the same about their situation. I tend to be very careful on any and all social media platforms I use because what I say isn’t just between friends. No … it’s between friends and my friends’ friends friends and so on.

    • Dave, this is a very interesting response and I appreciate your willingness to answer this question as I felt it was the more thought provoking of the two posed. So would you say then that social media was never truly an outlet of free speech in the first place if you’ve always had to censor yourself? I would argue that i have seen some people pretty freely expressing themselves on Facebook, especially before it became open to everyone and was just for college students. Thanks for the comment!

  4. Jake,

    I like where you are heading with a strategy for your dad’s business. I agree any business can be on social media but it is imperative that you find the platform that best suits the business. While I wouldn’t research a home builder or construction company on Facebook, I would check them out if a friend was recommending their services. It would then be an easy way to start a conversation with that company prior to moving to a phone call. I do think they could thrive on Pinterest by pinning great photos of completed jobs. People do a lot of inspiration pins of things they dream of doing to their home. This might be an area to explore.

    Facebook is about making connections and that can help with business. I find most of my “friends” on Facebook are actually people I work with directly and through the golf business. It helps us forge a more personal relationship. However, because I’ve chosen to let them into my personal life on Facebook, I feel I do not post certain things and feel restricted on what I can share. My free speech isn’t taken away, I’m choosing not to utilize it.

  5. It’s interesting that you pose that question because this is what I wrote about for our Intro to Multimedia Communications blog this week. I think when companies use social media in business, especially if they utilize their employees social media activity, they can create the ultimate brand ambassadors. For instance, last month at HSN we celebrated our 36th birthday. The company asked our viewers and employees to tweet or Instagram using #HSNBirthday. The amount of employees that participated in this and submitted funny/cute pictures that made it on air further enforced our branding “Its fun here” to our audience.

    That being said I do think there should be some censorship on certain media outlets. I know I have my Facebook profile set to very private settings. Facebook is where I meet to “hang” out with my friends and communicate informally. I think it’s important to have a work/life balance.Companies should not have access to the information I post here.

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