Is social media really the answer?

February 10, 2009

by Matt Hamm

As a PR student about to dive into the professional world, my head is full of innovative social media trends. My answer to all questions regarding brand and relationship building tends to be: SOCIAL MEDIA. As a member of Generation Y, I’ve come to learn that many people have their doubts about the success of social media.

Why shouldn’t people have doubts? Sure companies and organizations can easily become involved with social media, but are they really listening? Or maybe a better question would be: is the target audience going to connect with the selected social media tools? Building brands and relationships is all about connecting with people in the right way.

I’m currently working with a local non-profit, Eugene Masonic Cemetery (EMC), to help them build a stronger relationship with community members. The moment I mentioned social media, I received looks of doubt and confusion. How do I convince them that social media is a great tool to connect with community members?

After doing a little research, I found some great tips for EMC about using social media as well as other tools to raise brand awareness and build relationships. The following are tips from FEED: The Digital Design Blog and Authenticities:

Monitor social media and respond to what people are saying about you.

  • We live in an era built on social interactions. Don’t just focus on building brand awareness, focus on building a space where customers can interact with the brand and other people. Relationships are built by creating interaction among an organization and its publics.

Use existing online tools to create communication among an organization’s publics.

  • Update your Web site. Keep the content relevant and interesting. Increase your Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
  • Add RSS to your Web site so people can easily subscribe to your site.
  • Use e-mail to distribute interesting information and organization updates.

Now you may be thinking, “What valid or interesting information does a cemetery have to offer?” Actually, the cemetery is full of fun historical facts and personal stories. Who knows, maybe you’ll soon see EMC as an active Twitter member.


One Response to “Is social media really the answer?”

  1. Kai said

    Brings a whole new meaning to ‘burying’ stories on Digg! 🙂

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