With the prevalence of social media outlets these days, it’s now easier than it ever was before to share information with people all across the globe. This has obvious major advantages in plenty of realms, not least of which is its ability to help you extend your B2B marketing reach and stay in touch with industry contacts, but there are downfalls, too – the most glaring of which is the fact that the Internet is basically forever.
The media often runs stories warning parents to keep an eye on what their kids are posting to the Internet, or warning future college graduates that exposing all the gory details of any frat party experiences on Facebook might ruin their future job prospects, but what you don’t hear as often is that this also holds true for businesses large and small, and in certain cases, the ramifications can be much more far reaching than you imagined.
It’s incredibly important for business owners to always remember that when you put something on the Internet, it’s there forever. That photo, that tweet, that blog post – even if you personally delete it, there’s no guarantee it’s completely gone, and that means you must be circumspect about what you post online relating to your business.
This mostly applies to your business’s social media activities, such as Twitter or Facebook. Twitter especially can be a minefield, and for proof, all you need to do is check out the laundry list of celebrities, politicians and corporations that have posted injudicious tweets only to have them spread like wildfire with no hope for containment. If you’re already a well established entity, like a large corporation, you can bounce back from making a gaffe on Twitter, because people aren’t going to just immediately stop buying Pepsi or Macbooks, of course. But smaller companies without a lot of clout are especially vulnerable to the effects of these mistakes, and must therefore be as vigilant as possible.
Next time you sit down to compose a tweet or Facebook post as part of your B2B social media marketing, ask yourself, “Is this something I will not like having tied to my company 1 year down the road? 2 years? 5 years? Longer?” If the answer is “yes,” scrap it and come up with something else. Why? Because the Internet is forever, and you want your business to be, too.
Owner, Stockmann Law
CEO, Pearls Premium
VP Marketing, All Metals Forge Group
Todd M. Grant
Vice President of Marketing, LogicBay