Around 11:00 a.m. today I started to have some pre-lunch cravings. So, as often happens, I wandered down to the second floor for a visit to the vending machines. There, on the glass, in front of my powdered donuts was this sad story, spelled out on a sticky note.
First I felt really bad for Joye. Then I thought of the owner of the vending machine. How unfortunate that this story on a sticky note was there, in front of the change slot, causing vending machine patrons throughout the building to think twice about the age and quality of the snacks inside. I even found myself wondering how long the note had been there, dissuading other customers (two weeks based on the date referenced in Joye’s note). Suddenly my cravings were gone, and the powdered donuts looked stale behind the glass.
Then it hit me. This is the exact same predicament businesses are placing themselves in everyday. Many companies jump in, roll up their sleeves, set up some Web assets like a blog, a Facebook® page, or even a YouTube® channel. Then distractions come in the form of other work and priorities, or it takes too much energy to come up with something new to say. So, they stop posting, stop listening, and the existing content gets stale. Moldy content and unattended comments start hurting their brand.
Other businesses choose to avoid social media altogether, usually out of ignorance or fear, or both. What they need to know is that, according to Experian Hitwise, Facebook was the most visited website in 2010, surpassing Google. The same research showed that the terms “facebook” and “youtube” were the number 1 and number 5 most searched terms on the Web respectively in 2010. In June of this year, Facebook reportedly logged a staggering 1 Trillion page views, and YouTube touted 100 Billion. Do you have some social media sticky notes to attend to?