The Potential Dangers of Social Media for Your Business

naperville-business-lawyer-social-mediaIn the 21st century world of online connectivity, you want your business and your brand to be highly visible and accessible to web-based consumers. For an increasing number of business owners, this means embarking on a journey through the wilderness of social media. Social networking outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can be a tremendous boon to any business, but only if they are utilized properly. A poorly-designed social media campaign, or, worse, a haphazard approach can be devastating, not only to your bottom line but to your own personal reputation. I always encourage my business-owner clients to consider their marketing plans carefully, and to be sure that mistakes will not leave their companies exposed to potentially serious issues.

Too Much Spam

The world of social media advertising is unlike anything that has ever come before it. Imagine reading an actual letter from a friend, and as you reached back into the envelope to pull out the pictures she sent, the first thing you grabbed was a gaudy advertisement for a “special savings event” at Wal-mart. Now imagine that happening each time you tried to communicate with someone. Private social media users often feel much the same way about aggressive ads from businesses, and business owners who are relatively unfamiliar with social media etiquette are often especially guilty of such behavior. Potential consumers are usually willing to listen to you, but only if you are ready to engage them in such a way that makes them feel valued and appreciated. Become part of the conversation and not the loudspeaker blaring in the background.

Mixing Business and Pleasure

In addition to the advertising side of social media, there is an even bigger danger for some business owners. Many company social networking accounts are often linked to the personal user account of the business owner or manager. While this can be convenient during the work day for you to post office events to Facebook from your cell phone, for example, you may not remember to change back to your personal account when you stop at the bar for happy hour later.

Everyone deserves the right to blow off steam and relax, of course, and as a private citizen, you can certainly post whatever you like to social media. However, what happens when, several hours later, you decide you want to post something to your personal Facebook page that could be seen as offensive but instead, the post goes out on your company’s page? The resulting damage to your reputation and your business could be catastrophic.

Develop a Social Media Strategy

No matter how tech-savvy you may be, it is a good idea to consult with an experienced Naperville business attorney before beginning any business-related social media activity. Attorney Denice Gierach has been helping small business owners get the protection they need for more than 30 years, and she can help you identify potential sources of negative exposure in your planned campaign. Call 630-756-1160 to schedule an appointment today.



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