Social Media: Brand Making & Brand Breaking–What Keeps CEOs Awake

As a “Twitter Evangelist” I feel like I preach daily about the benefits of Twitter for businesses. And not just Twitter, but all social networks as a rule. Posting online about your business clearly improves your search rankings and can dramatically improve your business “digital footprint” as my friend Brad Wilkerson likes to say.

It can also help you tell your story, promote events, promote your news (PR), recruit good people, etc. The benefits far exceed the negatives in my opinion.

I have had the honor recently to speak at the following events: The Memphis Chamber of Commerce Small Business Breakfast, NPA’s international meeting this past week at the Peabody in Memphis and also as a panelist on Knoxville’s social media club on social media and business…Each session was awesome and upon reflection, I am reminded of the passion I have for social media and the impact it is having on “main street” anywhere. Everywhere! In my daily work with my clients, I am reminded of the “Power of Twitter.” Just last week one of my clients had a story that got reported with false information on national news networks. Thanks largely to a real-time Twitter search and my google alerts I have set up, I found it early and we were able to correct it, post accurate information and help our client. Amazing. PR is now 24/7 and viral. So here’s the point: Corporate clients both love and hate social media. A valid view. When things are going great and everyone is loving you, life is good. Flip the coin and have something “BAD” happen and BAM! You are the evil corporate empire being judged (right or wrong) in the court of mass internet perception. Wow. Brand Making vs. Brand Breaking in one small keystroke. Gives many CEO’s heartburn, let me tell you. OK, so it’s Sunday afternoon and you don’t have all day (and it’s beautiful and sunny 60s in Memphis) so here’s what I think is very important to the C-suite (CEO, CFO, COO, CMO):

* When news happens (good or bad) get your facts and talking points fast

* Have a “what if” strategy in place long before “what if” happens

* Make sure your legal team gets social media (if your lawyer doesn’t know what Twitter is you might need to re-think things)

* Being “tech savvy” isn’t being “business savvy”…don’t put a young person in charge of social media without corporate compliance/experience oversight

* Your social media strategy should be similar to your media policy/strategy (see my earlier blog post on “Top Guns” in social media)

* Make sure HR and PR get it and are communicating

* If your PR person/firm doesn’t understand social media, get a new one who does

* Monitor, monitor, monitor

* Do not fear noise on the internet: Quality is the ultimate “filter”

* If you have great people, a great service/product, TELL YOUR STORY

* Finally, advice I give my clients daily: Tell your own story or someone else will

Now, go outside and enjoy this great weather….As I finish this post, I’m out on my deck, laptop on lap (hence name), kids playing in the yard, birds seem louder than normal–and I’m thankful and grateful for this day, my family and my friends both online and in real life–they seem to be merging lately…Future prediction? Online and Real life will tend to merge. Thanks for reading this and look forward to your comments. Next post will be about #BroganMemphis and all my *Power Tweeters* coming to Memphis May 6 to hear Chris Brogan. Cool times we live in!

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One thought on “Social Media: Brand Making & Brand Breaking–What Keeps CEOs Awake

  1. Amy – excellent post!! Lots of practical advice compressed into one post. Good stuff!

    I would only add CIOs to the C-suite list. I think they will share a disproportionate burden in successful companies of the SM age (apart from marketing and HR).

    Cheers,
    Prince

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