Article by Nathan Todd, ASBAS Advisor, Western Sydney Business Centre

There is no doubt that being on social media for most businesses has become almost a necessity, especially with the competition around. But are you just on social media for the sake of it? There are many risks involved that could potentially tarnish years of brand building, through something as simple as social media.

Many businesses see the need to be on social media but enter without any planning/strategy, this has the potential to ruin your brands reputation online. Your brands image is largely conveyed online, so it is essential that whoever manages your socials is well trained. Make sure they know what types of content will best represent your brand online. I would avoid everyone having access to post when they feel necessary. Having a designated person or team to control your socials would be the best way to go about it. There must always be one person in charge that gives the final approval to click ‘post’.

Inconsistency is a big factor when it comes to your online brand. Incomplete or outdated social media pages can reflect poorly on your business if they are not managed. A business Facebook page that has not been updated in a few months or even a year can leave potential consumers with a bad assumption regarding your business. One thing you must remember is that a social media page is another way for a customer to get in contact with you, if you are not onto this you may be losing out on business. The best way to avoid online inconsistency is to meet weekly/monthly to discuss the businesses direction and set out a plan for your next posts. By sticking to a plan and routinely updating your pages with interesting content, your brand will keep a consistent image and remain competitive.

There are obviously a lot of benefits to social media, but it is important to establish the risks before exposing your brand online. Don’t just think you need to be on there because your competitor is there. Do your research first because social media takes time, and time is money.