7 Golden Rules for Engaging in Social Media Conversations

September 3, 2009 at 8:12 pm Leave a comment

DSC_0033It happened in the solemn twilight hours of an otherwise typical weeknight.  The CEO of the International ACME Widget Association (IAWA) awoke helplessly from a deep sleep which was disrupted by a harrowing nightmare.  In the nightmare, the CEO received a distressed email from an IAWA Board Member with a link to a blog post which included a number of criticisms about IAWA’s statement of practice regarding widget engineering.  The panicked Board Member instructed the CEO to find a way to make the posting go away.  The CEO awoke in a cold sweat, but quickly realized that their association had no strategy or process for handling such a situation.

As associations, its time for us all to awaken to the reality we can no longer ignore the social media-based conversations which are taking place outside our organizational walls.  Even more, we must realize that every single conversation is an opportunity to cultivate insights, trends, engagement and relationships.

As you begin to assemble your social media strategy, below are 7 golden rules for engaging in social media conversations:

  1. Release yourself from the illusion that you can somehow control the conversation.
  2. Regularly monitor the social web and all major social media channels using your brand as a keyword search.
  3. Listen very carefully to what is being said with an open-mind as every  perspective is an opportunity to learn.
  4. When you discover an opportunity to engage, try to first reach out directly on a one-to-one level either through email or a direct message.
  5. When you reach out, know that conversations cultivate valued relationships.
  6. Focus on reaching a better understanding of praise and complaints alike while at the same time looking to create value in shaping a positive experience through the interaction.
  7. If a public response/comment is necessary, wait until after you’ve had a chance to engage in the one-on-one interaction.

Social Frequency_symbolNeed help developing your association’s social media strategy?  Social Frequency Media Communications can help your association join its future… already in progress.  Visit our website at www.socialfrequency.net or contact me directly at stuart@socialfrequency.net .

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Entry filed under: Quick Tips & Ideas, Social Media, Web 2.0 and Beyond.

5 Ways to Get into the Flow of Social Media Association Publishing Magazine Features Stuart Meyer in September/October 2009 Issue

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