Knowing what is going on in your market, maintaining good relationships, and making your brand look good is key in getting repeat and new business. Social Media is a great place to facilitate talks and gather information because you are able to join an ever-expanding conversation at any point of that conversation.
The great thing is that if you embellish both the good and the bad, and handle the bad with proactive and open efforts, it will make your brand look even better. Clients and potential customers will flock to a business that can show the ability to respond quickly to problems and questions. Making your efforts visible in a public or social network is one of the easiest ways to do this.
Keep in mind that no matter if you are the one that creates the place for discussion or not, the discussion will and is taking place. Whether or not you are a part of that conversation, negative or positive, is what makes the difference and can show that your brand is able to respond to problems and questions. If you are facilitating the environment in which people are commenting, you have the ability to not only establish rapport and control your image, you also gain insight into your own brand or product(s). You may even learn that you need to pitch your product in a different way, change your value proposition, or even make the product/service better.
If you start it, you have to maintain it. Allocate a resource to your social media communications. It looks worse for your brand if the conversation is happening right in front of you and you still are not acting. This same principle applies to any aspect of your business. If people are calling sales and you don’t respond, you lose a sale. If they call customer service to get a question answered and no one responds, they go to your competitors for help.