Posts Tagged ‘Twitter’
By now it’s not news that there have been a lot of citizens sharing their thoughts and concerns about the national healthcare plan being discussed in local town halls (if you haven’t seen the videos, check some of them out on YouTube).
My friend Ken Yeung had an excellent post, What Happens When You Think your Customers Will Kowtow to You? (had to use the post name because I love the word kowtow), last week about how the AARP representative totally dismissed any comments or discussion that their members wanted to share in light of the position that AARP was taking in regards to national healthcare and sharing with them.
In short, the AARP representative told the members “we want to hear from you” and when they started speaking she said: ”Excuse me, but I really appreciate it if everyone could keep their comments quiet until there is time for the public…” By the end of the video, she was so mad that she couldn’t deliver her message that she walked out on the members. [Check out the video on Ken's post, it's quite interesting to watch.]
I don’t find any of the passion or discussions (some may call them disruptions) out of the ordinary at all. Why should I, right? We tell organizations everyday that they need to listen to their constituents and that they can’t push their messages, and that they are no longer in control of certain situations or their community.
But what did surprise me were the social media folks on Twitter talking about how these town hall discussions were out of line. Really?
I’m sure that Dell, Motrin, Dominos, Tropicana, Walmart, United and MANY more organizations felt that the discussions that their customers were having about them were totally disrupting to their business day. Right?
And yet, social media proponents analyzed their every action (or inaction) to death, shared their opinions on Twitter, their blogs and in conversation. These same companies are often used as examples of “what not to do (or to do right…after the fact). We tell companies to get with the program because this is the way it is today because ALL customers have a voice.
If you are going to be advising clients, organizations or management on social media, please be very careful to not pick and choose when you think customer conversations are acceptable or not…especially if they are based on your own political affiliation.
I understand that some people are very passionate about their politics, but I ask you to remember one thing: the government gets their money from taxpayers. That means, just like organizations, they need to be prepared for conversations, disruptions, and negativity because ALL customers have a voice. Right?
(It doesn’t matter if it’s on- or offline because eventually it could end up online anyway.)
If you embrace social media…don’t talk out of both sides of your mouth. You are either for open conversation and dialog in any form that it happens in or you aren’t. Which is it?
[Image: Flickr, Boxelf]
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Let’s pretend… Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn all go away due to lack of funding or revenues. What happens next?
If you are a social media consultant how will you advise your clients to continue their social media efforts? If you are a company how will you maintain your social media efforts?
Are you serious about social media enough to innovate or come up with another strategy to use social media to stay connected with your customers, prospects, employees, investors, etc.?
Seriously, have you thought about it?
[Phew! This goes on record for one of my shortest posts ever!]
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Has your organization been tinkering with Twitter and now you’re wondering why the heck you even bothered? Or, perhaps the shiny object syndrome has worn off and it’s time to get down to brass tacks by incorporating Twitter into an effective marketing & PR strategy. Well…
The O’Reilly Twitter Boot Camp is coming up soon! If you haven’t heard about it or are considering going, here’s what you can look forward to:
- $100 off the registration fee (the discount code is at the end of this post)!
- Mastering the basics of Twitter usage and terminology
- Learning best practices for building an engaged Twitter following
- Developing strategies for integrating Twitter into your existing marketing mix
- Exploring third-party applications that help manage and optimize how you use Twitter
There are a lot of great sessions during this one-day boot camp! I’ll be on a panel discussing the Logistics of Integrating Twitter into Existing PR and Marketing.
Twitter seems so easy, right? But how many organizations are actually efficiently and effectively implementing social media, let alone Twitter, into their communications strategies? If you are marketing, PR or communications pro with one toe (or even hip deep) in the social media water…this might just be the conference for you!
The Twitter Boot Camp speakers are from all different industries and backgrounds, but I think they’d all agree on one thing: Twitter is indeed a useful business communication tool.
What’s more? If you attend you’ll receive:
- On-site help signing up for Twitter if you don’t have an account
- Free copy of The Twitter Book by Tim O’Reilly and Sarah Milstein
- And food, of course…Continental breakfast, lunch, morning and afternoon snacks
And last, but not least… you can get $100.00 off when you use the code “ORMFF.” [And no, I don't get any kick backs.] Feel free to pass on the discount code.
Hope to see you there!
[Image: JS-Kit blog]
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Sorry, dreaming…back to the subject at hand. Last night Jim Turner of BlogWorld made an off the cuff statement about having Oprah keynote this year’s BlogWorld that, as you can image, led to a very interesting conversation (be sure to check out both Twitter Searches). The debate ranges from Oprah isn’t a social media expert to Oprah could drive more social media use and increase BlogWorld sponsorships.
Here are my thoughts on all of it… As social media purists-who believe that social media is actually changing marketing and business as we know it-is it fair to give celebrities (as businesses) a pass because they are famous? Would you give Steve Jobs or Richard Branson or any other business (large, medium or small) a pass? Let’s face facts, some celebs have way more time on their hands to Twitter (insert any other social media tool here) than the average CEO or VP of Marketing and yet the business folks are constantly scrutinized and beat up daily for their social media missteps.
Marketing, pure and simple, is about making people part with their money, right? Whether it’s a business, non-profit, government agency, university/college, etc…they are all trying to get you to dig into your wallets and part with your cash. Celebrities are no different. They don’t act in movies or host TV shows because it’s fun. Nope. They do it to entertain you so you will give them LOTS of your money.
When we discuss this brave new world of social media and marketing, we social media purists advise companies that they need to start conversations with customers, prospective, that they need to become part of the community and more. Celebrities are no different. Yes, I get it, some people on Twitter will never care if Ashton or Oprah talk back (that is if the Oprah account is really hers) or if they have ghost bloggers/tweeters or if they never engage with the community. And yes, celebrities could use social media tools for a one way push of messaging (well, not Ashton so much). I get all of that. But…
What if it were really the celebrities blogging/tweeting, etc.? Wouldn’t they experience as much of a reward from social media that we promise to businesses? i.e. more brand evangelists, more revenues, more dialogue that leads to better product, etc.
What do you think? Should celebs be held to the same level of accountability as businesses?
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As you know, I’ve been reviewing and questioning personal branding lately and I have one final question (or in this case, lots of questions) for you all. Quite simply, from a “You 2.0″ perspective, if you work for a company and you build up your Twitter Followers or Facebook friends from the hours of 8am-5pm (or whatever your daily work hours are)…who owns those connections made during those hours? And as you know, you don’t need to use the company network to Twitter or Facebook, so then what?
You might not like what I am about to say here, but I believe that if a company is paying you to connect with people online on their behalf…they own those connections. Even if the accounts are under your name. I mean, they paid you, right? Or is that wrong? Or is it both? What are the ethics?
Role-based Pre-Existing Accounts
Take my Twitter/Facebook accounts, I am Beth Harte on both. If I were to join a company in marketing capacity and continue to increase my connections while they are paying me, I believe those connections are the property of my employer. Or are they?
How do we address this potential issue? Here’s one thought…
Prior to accepting a job, negotiate that all followers/friends (existing or new) will remain your property and that the company has the right to “borrow” your accounts and connections for the period of your employment.
Does that work? Would employers buy into that? Would we need to prove the value of our accounts before they would accept those negotiating terms?
Non-role-based Pre-Existing Accounts
Let’s face it, lots of people have Twitter accounts that may not have to do with their daily jobs and yet they still are on Twitter and Facebook during the day. What happens if your company finds out or if you get a new job where they don’t see any value in your Twitter/Facebook accounts? Do you only participate after working hours as to not potentially violate company guidelines?
What’s the most ethical way to handle this situation? Or is it not an ethical situation, but a basic “follow the employee rules/guidelines” situation.
New Accounts (Role-based or not)
What if you start your Twitter/Facebook accounts under your name while working for your employer without their knowing, building up your followers/friends on the company’s dime? Or, on the flip side what if you start an account for your employer, but under your name (and not something like “Susan_XYZ Company”).
How can you handle these situations? If you’ve done it, how? And has it worked?
Where is it all heading?
Will we get to the point where everyone will have their own accounts and companies will have to negotiate for access to them? Will it take time for companies to accept these types of “personal brands” and in the meantime you’ll have to put yours on hold? Is it just a matter of employers having smart guidelines in place?
Lots of questions here and perhaps ethical situations. What do you think? Are there any other account ownership situations we should be discussing?