According to the 7th edition of its “corporate communication barometer”, the Union Des Annonceurs (UDA) indicates that on average, 50 % of companies are present on social networks today, and 21 % wish to develop their corporate communication there within the next three years. So what are the reasons that more than 2/3rds of companies wish to be present on social networks?
Firstly, it’s because social networks allow a company or an organisation to reach a wider community than the majority of the other communications channels. Thanks to social networks, borders are no longer defined by a street, district or country.
Secondly, it’s because social networks allow for the immediate communication of information. There is no more gap in time between the validation of information and its distribution to the public. And finally, because social networks are THE TOOL of connection between peers of the “young generation “, the company can use them to reach this target.
However, having social networks implies that a company is conscious of certain aspects at the risk of achieving the opposite of the desired effect:
• Know and master the codes of the social networks in which the company intervenes or is visible (Facebook does not have the same codes as Twitter or Google +).
• Agree not to control everything: being present on social networks implies handing over (often via comments) to people who do not necessarily wish to communicate the same messages as the company, and who might even spread negative messages or harm its image.
• Consider that there can be a gap between the message posted and the interpretation made: only 140 characters to spread a message is not a lot.
This is why communication on social networks must be intelligently orchestrated: what do we want to say? Why? At what moment? To which targets? And with what means?
Communication on social networks is there not a substitute for other communication channels. Rather, it is complementary and has to be an integral part of a more global communications plan.