Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

5 Reasons Why Details Matter In Growing a Business in 2019

It can happen to anyone.

Whether it be a single individual, a politician, or a company – a single post on social media can go viral overnight. While some organizations intentionally aspire to go viral, the incidents that tend to persist in the memory of customers are the ones that go badly. This can happen for a myriad of reasons, but it always boils down to dismissing the importance of details.

Some businesses may consider establishing a detailed social media platform strategy a “nice to have” or a “low priority.” Silence is often considered a prudent approach if a company simply cannot devote time and resources towards social media. This is a risky position to have as Poland Springs demonstrated in 2013. Radio silence is not a protective armor in today’s world. In fact, it appears “suspicious.”

All entrepreneurs need to acknowledge that the culture of connectedness is well established and not going away. Facebook is 14 years old, Twitter is 12 years old, and Instagram is roughly 8 years old. Granted, some social media platforms ebb and flow in popularity, but it is reckless to dismiss it as a non-critical piece of growing a brand. Any company that shuns or ignores social media simply will not grow.

The answer to successfully navigating the modern market is recognizing the importance that details play in growing a business.

The Internet is Forever and Customers Know That

Customers are increasingly internet savvy due to a combination of personal use and an seemingly endless stream of examples of social media faux paus. Once the dust settles, these stories are positioned as lessons about online safety or privacy concerns. However, even if a post or tweet is deleted, it can be resurrected from the grave and shared freely. The internet as a whole can and will hold a company accountable for overlooking the smallest of details.

Outcomes Depend on Details

It is critical to give proper vetting to every social media interaction your business has done, will do, or plans on doing in the future. If a customer can find it, it is “fair game” to come back and haunt the company regardless of its age. Recovering from an incident is difficult. Just because a tweet is deleted does not mean it’s gone from the public eye. The reality is customers these days not only find social media fails entertaining, but it impacts their perception of your brand and if they will continue to support your business.

Details Can and Do Change Over Time

A prime positive example of leveraging the internet’s eidetic memory of social media activity is Wendy’s. They took a significant risk and embraced the double edged nature of internet culture with resounding success. They not only established a “voice” that was consistent from post to post, but it was executed with consistency. Wendy’s didn’t post into the void unprepared. When users would interact with them on twitter, the responses were insightful and in tune with pop culture. Wendy’s social media presence had a distinct personality that its user base quickly resonated with.

This was quickly lost though when in 2017, a single tweet failed to recognize its anti-semitic overtones.

How did Wendy’s fall into this disaster? It failed to pay attention to how the associations with Pepe the Frog evolved from amusing meme culture to a sinister character. Details are not static and require diligence to manage appropriately.

Five Takeaways to Bring To The Next Brainstorming Meeting

Tackling this complex issue may seem overwhelming, especially for smaller businesses trying to plan out allocating resources that make sense for their stage of growth.

  1. Decide what the “personality” of your company’s social media is.
    1. What kind of personality will resonate the best as a spokesperson for your business?
  2. Define values that “personality” strongly believes in.
    1. These traits should be noticeable and consistent in every social media interaction.
  3. Build a process of how communication “works” between your business and social media.
    1. Social media posts should be crafted to meet a set of standards defined in the previous two points.
  4. Decide how to handle mistakes and faux paus before they happen.
    1. Lay down the groundwork for a system to handle mistakes appropriately and professionally.
  5. Understand and embrace a culture of “continuous improvement.”
    1. Mistakes can and do happen. How you handle them is critical.

Similar to a group of musicians, growing a successful business requires all the participants to be in sync with one another. A details-focused mantra goes beyond a socially relevant internet presence.  “Little” things can become “viral” overnight in either a positive or catastrophic direction. Being caught in not having all the details in a sensitive situation is a death sentence for a brand. There should be a multitude of check and balances that go on “behind the scenes” that are critical to ensure that no single misstep can explode into a PR nightmare. However, with the right attitude and focus, any business dedicated to navigating the complex interconnected market can grow and flourish.

photo credit: ATLAS Social Media 

Posted on November 14th, 2018 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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