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Our MD Danny Parker asks: Is it time for businesses to unfriend Facebook and turn off their Twitter feed?

30 May 2018
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Trust in social media was already at an all-time low with fake news, Instagram sponsored-post issues and trolling when Facebook’s recent data harvesting scandal hit.

Privacy is now paramount as people become ever more protective of their personal data.

At the beginning of the year the Telegraph reported most people thought social media was not regulated enough and lacked transparency.

Nearly two thirds, according to the Edelman Trust Barometer, believed social media companies were selling people’s data without their knowledge and a third did not think social media is a force for good in society.
So, should we even bother with these tainted channels anymore?

Well, the answer is a resounding yes. Although Cambridge Analytica, the data firm at the centre of the current Facebook privacy row, has failed to survive, Facebook users – at least in the US – have remained as active if not more so in the wake of the scandal, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.

And there is still no quicker, more direct, and if you know what you are doing, easier way to develop loyal, lasting relationships with consumers and boost business. Community and communication are key. Do not spam people’s timelines with product posts and sales chat – it is the quickest way to get an unfollow.

Respect your customers, befriend them. Dialogue leads to a trust so have a conversation, have hundreds of them. Be authentic, be helpful, be honest and straightforward. In other words: be human. Followers stick around if you join in, offer insights and opinions, share useful content and be relatable.

Even little actions can bring big accountability- for example, the author signing off a company tweet or Facebook post with their name demonstrates ownership of the output, gives a ‘face’ to your content and inspires trust.
And contrary to the popular belief, digital doesn’t mean huge investment in brands always being ‘on’. Manchester Airport clearly states when there is no one manning its social media output by having the team say goodnight in their final post of the day. It shows there are humans with lives of their own behind the tweets and is all the better for it. No bot accusations there.

As an aside, I have no doubt major feeds are being passively monitored during the hours the accounts are ‘dark’. The gold standard requires top creative people to maintain a trustworthy presence online and retain consumer trust. Best practice builds relationships, enhances brand recognition and increases engagement through interesting, responsive and authentic communications. Do you have the time?

Add ATTAIN’s dedicated Account Managers to your friends list and allow us take care of your social media. We offer a range of incredible packages – we will design a bespoke package tailored to your individual requirements and budget. Contact the team today.

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