Without a doubt, being prepared is a good thing, but it is possible to be prepared. When little Randy Parker’s mother is dressing him to go outside, she bundles him up so securely in his winter layers, he is packed so tightly he can’t put his arms down.
There is a fear amongst some businesses that don’t understand social media. They are afraid of entering into the digital conversation because someone might say something bad. The thing is people are already out there saying something bad. And something good, and asking questions, writing reviews, checking in, and more. Thinking that not creating a social media presence for a business is the same as wrapping yourself up so tight you can’t put your arms down.
Preparedness in social media means being active. You need to representation in the spaces where people are already talking about your business. Invest time into managing the online communities related to your company. Give people a place to go to learn about you and communicate with you directly. Will there be negativity? Possibly. But with an active presence there is the ability to turn things around quickly and in some cases, avoid escalation due to the viral nature of the internet.
Listening is a very important part of social media preparedness. Set up Google alerts for your business name and keywords related to you business. You can do the same for the names of your competitors to learn what they have going on. There are also many tools to monitor blogs and social media that will search your name and keywords.
Being prepared is a good thing, being over prepared can be dangerous. Don’t forget to bundle up, but make sure you can still move your arms!