There are a lot of articles written to ease the anxiety people may feel about being publicly engaged and exposed in the social media space. For instance, Christine Pilch wrote a great two part series on the Hazards of Social Media where she discusses what to do when one person goes after you online or when people that you don’t think do good work ask you to recommend them (and possibly tarnish your reputation).
These articles are full of worthy, important information, but they speak to small situations. They help the small business owner or the individual. So what happens when the online business or brand is much bigger – a company like a Sony, a brand like Coke, corporate spaces and big news sites?
These corporations exist in a huge social media space that allows a great volume of user generated content. From their own chatrooms, blogs and interactive web experiences to the seemingly uncontrolled landscapes of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Digg, YouTube…we could go on and on. How do you know the content your users are contributing is legal, appropriate etc? How do you enforce your community rules without censoring people?
First, have your eyes and ears open. Scout Moderation helps you do this with listening tools and a team of professionals that are your eyes and ears – handling problems, addressing issues, giving you the information so that you can take action and help unhappy customers or ‘trespassers’ find resolution.
Second, don’t just sit back and let it happen, be part of the experience. We’ll keep you in the know about everything that’s being said about you, your brand and your company, and then it is time for action. Will you share helpful information on your blog? Respond to gripes via your own Twitter account?
Dell has done this successfully. It started when their batteries were exploding and lighting computers on fire. They could have gone down in flames, but they were listening to what people were saying and they immediately took to their blog and took action. By listening and then communicating, they literally saved their company.
Listen, moderate, communicate and flourish.