The numbers of internet users that have caught the social media and blogging bug grow daily and will continue to do so exponentially thus making it all the more critical to retain a competitive edge. But how many of us really understand the big picture?
Many of us simply post at will on Facebook or tweet sporadically on Twitter and have not even heard of Pinterest let alone posted a pin! Any modern business owner will have an active website but do they have a blog? Blogs can be run separately but you should really incorporate a good blog as part of your business website.
Blogging is an outlet for your business promotions, news & views
The aim of any website is to increase the number of hits to it so that you can inform your audience about your services and products and ultimately engage and persuade the site visitor to buy from you. Without a blog, your website is a static source of information. This used to be the norm and businesses could get away with it because the competition was small and no-one had really heard of social media. However, today in order to attract and grow an audience you have to play the social media game.
The social media game involves your blog as the central point. Without an active blog, time spent on social media is left to the mercy of the social media operator. By this I mean that if the social media platform of choice suddenly closes down and withdraws their (free) service then you are left high and dry.
Doing social media without a blog essentially means you are putting all your eggs in their basket and not in your own – ie you are giving away control of your information. To reinforce my point see below:
- Ownership of information posted on social media – Facebook users may not realise that by posting on Facebook they are granting them (subject to privacy settings) “non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, world license to use any content posted in connection with their active Facebook account. Similar terms and conditions no doubt prevail on other social media platforms and users should examine these details carefully if copyright is of concern to them. Below is an extract from Facebook’s terms and conditions (as at 28 March 2013) about such matters:
“For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). This IP License ends when you delete your IP content or your account unless your content has been shared with others, and they have not deleted it.”
As I see it social media is operated as a free service to the user. Therefore, the operator has no obligation to continue to offer their services and can simply shut down abruptly if it suits them. Naturally, the operator may have advertisers on their site and they would of course have a responsibility to them but they certainly have no real commitment to the user. This means that serious business owners need to own and control their own website and blog and harness the power of social media to encourage traffic flow towards their on-line marketing control centre – namely their own website and blog.
If you are a small business who does not know how to achieve this SMG Virtual PA can help you in many ways.