Social Media HAS Laws – Learn Them!
During this time of tragedy and recovery, the spotlight has been turned on social media. It has come up in regards to postings and social media sites that untruths were not only being spread, but were also hurting people who were already suffering terribly.
Each and every week we speak about the “power” of social media. We speak about the fact that company’s live and go bankrupt in the 21st Century because of poor social media and not utilizing social media more. We speak about networks, tags, websites, how to produce successful advertising and marketing campaigns for your business to increase ‘brand awareness’ by increasing your company’s visibility.
Data, analysts, researchers, social media professionals and experts – they have all shown what this is all about. But, as an opening to this one article, a social media team would also like to address the fact that social media is a workforce. It is based on social connections and, for business, is based on selling products and services and becoming number one in your industry because of your creativity and hard work. It is not, nor will it ever be, a place for anyone to spread lies, untruths, or harm others.
Many events and conferences are thrown across the global in order for marketers and interested parties to learn all about the legalities of social media. The information is out there, and the legal issues relating to marketing and advertising show businesses how to hire social media teams that will walk the line absolutely truthfully and still provide consumers with a way to purchase the things they want and need without having to lie to them or ‘create’ stories to make consumers become customers.
Social media is a huge part of sales, as we all know. Just as it was for television in the past, social media is now the largest locale where customers shop, which means brands are working to make sure their social media team is on top of all the social network platforms. It’s as if the internet is prime real estate, and each and every company wants to move in to a profitable neighborhood. And they can…in an ultra-honest way.
“User-generated content (UGC), transparency, disclosure and intellectual property;’ these are the subjects that all companies MUST learn when preparing their advertising campaigns and preparing to utilize the powerful social media world to make their brands and their companies succeed.
This can come in the simplest form…such as reviews. Company websites most often have customer reviews posted to show the positives about their company. Whether it be accolades about a product or praise on good customer service, companies are all for reviews, just as writers covet the review of a reader or magazine for their newest novel. Having reviews/opinions are fantastic, but the second a company tries to manipulate said reviews, then you’re breaching the ‘silent contract’ you have with the customers who are supporting you. You become subject to legal issues in regards to your marketing strategy.
From the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to local and national organizations governing the world of social media, you – as a company and a leader in your industry – must make sure that there is nothing but truth in your promotions. The Web has people who are ready to do more harm than good, and each and every company must make sure that their passion for their industry is without lies of any kind – because your website will not be rewarded for excellence if you are not practicing excellence each and every day.
Celebrity endorsements need to be made by very real celebrities, false claims will damage a reputation before it is even built. So the ideas and creative minds behind an advertising campaign must be made with a social media team standing behind you that is above reproach.
Social media is becoming more and more sophisticated, and even though there is an old saying that ‘all publicity is good publicity’ – it is absolutely not true. Make sure that you are exhibiting the business behavior that is stellar and that will lead consumers straight to your website in order to be part of a company they can trust and believe in!
So whether it be ads on Facebook, or selling your work/product on Amazon, or speaking to consumers over Twitter and LinkedIn, solidify your future by building genuine marketing campaigns that will allow your company to reign for a good, long time to come.
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