To tweet or not to tweet, that is the question.
Many of you who are reading this blog probably have your own personal Twitter and/or Facebook accounts. Your employer may also have its own Facebook page. And, your corporate communications department may already have someone tasked to monitor social media sites like Twitter for specific web chatter and trends that may impact your business.
If you’re not already doing these things, you should be. But even if you are, you would only be scratching the surface of what these new social media tools could be doing for your company.
According to About.com, the term “social media” includes the “various online technology tools that enable people to communicate easily via the internet to share information and resources. Social media can include text, audio, video, images, podcasts, and other multimedia communications.”
Of course, social media is not a panacea for companies; and neither was the advent of television and video starting in the 1960s. Yet, television provided an exciting new medium for companies to reach customers and the public through advertising. Those companies that moved early and effectively to take advantage of this new medium prospered. And video later provided companies productive ways to communicate internally and to train large numbers of employees in multiple locations in a cost-effective way.
Likewise, social media provides your company with new opportunities to communicate with customers and the public – in real time – like never before. Social media can also be utilized within your company as very effective collaboration tools. For example, managers within different parts of the company could use a customized internal website or “wiki” to trade best practice information. Employees could use it to provide real-time suggestions on process innovation, or ideas for new or improved products or services.
Social media tools are not your traditional “one-to-many” glossy corporate newsletters or large distribution emails from the CEO. Social media are instead “many-to-many” tools, which support the “democratization of knowledge and information” in a highly cost-effective manner according to Wikipedia.org – a poster child itself for many-to-many Web 2.0.
High benefit. Low cost. What’s not to like?
So add this to your New Year’s resolution list: get serious about new social media tools and put them to work for your company in 2010. New Lantern can help show you how, and I predict you’ll then be tweeting our praises.