It’s one of the greatest ironies of the business world: the larger and more successful the company, the longer it takes for it to realize the times are a-changing. This frustrated me no end during my time as a communications consultant to major companies. Really, publicly-listed client, with your household name and a surfeit of dollars at your command — you’re still not sure whether you ought to be on social media? The 1 billion people hanging out on Facebook haven’t tempted you into the pool? The journalists that help drive your stock price are on Twitter but you haven’t worked up the courage to stop lurking and start tweeting? LinkedIn is the network for finding talent but you have no idea who’s managing the company page?
With all of the resources and staff at my clients’ disposal, and given the year on the calendar, I found it incredibly frustrating. But instead of running shrieking from the boardroom I would put on my gameface, summon all the diplomacy I could muster and then, along with my colleagues, explain why social media was revolutionizing how people communicated with companies and what they should do about it.
I hoped they would take our advice, I really did. But I also knew that they could smile politely, thank us for our time, do absolutely nothing on social media for quite a while longer, and still keep their millions of customers and their household name.
Here’s the thing: a Fortune 500 company may not need social media. Take Coca Cola — you, me and everybody’s mother knows Coke and if they shunned Facebook tomorrow it wouldn’t change that. But that craft brewery you’re working so hard to create? A whole different story.
That’s because small companies build their businesses one customer at a time. And when they’re starting they need every arrow in their quiver to turn prospects into customers, and then transform them into passionate advocates who want to help them stay in business.
As a means to do this social media is heaven-sent. Its ability to let you locate, listen to and speak with customers and influencers is unmatched in the history of human communications.
If anyone can benefit from social media it’s a small business. But the irony is that many small business owners are so busy with other tasks that they often neglect social media. They do it poorly, e.g. too infrequently, or not at all. They also often lack the thousands of dollars needed to hire consultants or staff to do it for them.
This is why we launched Emphatic.
Emphatic is “do-it-for-you” social media at small-business friendly prices. An affordable monthly subscription (cancellable at any time) provides personalized Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn updates made by a network of on-demand U.S.-based writers. When a subscriber joins Emphatic the first thing we do is our homework. We scour their website, testimonials, reviews and existing social media profiles to get to the heart of their identity and what distinguishes them. Next we look at their industry and the narratives and influencers that might be most helpful to them.
After this we’re ready to give them some fresh, engaging and relevant social media updates to meet their business objectives. Our writers create the updates and then send them to the client for their approval. This ensures that clients retain ultimate control over their brand communication and allows them to provide feedback that will help us get to know the clients preferences for the future and make the updates even better. Once clients approve they can easily send or schedule to their Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter networks via the Emphatic platform.
Emphatic may help level the playing field for time-strapped small business owners who have a lot to gain from social media. We have nothing against the Coca-Colas of the world, but we’re glad to do our part to help Main Street business owners put points on the board.
About the Author: This article is written by Jeniece Primus, Co-founder Emphatic.co.