Using Social Video and Social Media – Social Capital – to Your Full Advantage
Did you know more than 1 BILLION people use Facebook every day? Facebook is a world-wide social network where people communicate, post, share, and search. People are turning to social media channels to research products and services. When they’ve found what they’re looking for, they are also more likely to reach out to companies when they have questions.
Companies and organizations must consider how tremendous of an impact they can make on their brand awareness and revenue by using social media platforms to boost their social capital.
What is Social Capital?
Social capital is the glue that bonds online communities together. Social capital has the ability to foster communities and build loyalty in the existing space on social platforms.
Members of this online community form connections and exchange meaningful information. By doing that, they generate goodwill all over. The relationships formed over time become stronger as people engage in their online network.
Building Social Capital
Social capital is different in every community. It depends on the network’s size, trustworthiness, and connections. Social capital can easily flow from one community to the next with more network connections. To build this social capital, brands can offer their online community members useful tips, product information, tailored solutions, and other support. Some brands will come across times of crisis, making the social capital invaluable. A time of crisis can be receiving bad publicity, have a recall, or falling into a scandal. The brand will need to dig deep into its entire network to uncover some embedded gold. Social capital has the ability to fix the damage of the crisis. If the damage is severe, the social capital may shrivel and fail. This is why building social capital is important.
Be Honest and Transparent
It is a must for brands to engage with the audience, even during difficult conversations. Research has shown that consumers expect the brand to be honest, helpful, and friendly. To prepare for any conversation thrown your way, align your social content and tone with your company’s mission. Sticking to company values throughout all interactions secures honest and genuine responses. Also, being transparent generates more of a “win-win” scenario with allies. On the other hand, the brand should evaluate all information before sharing it with the public because nothing ruins a reputation like distributing false information.
The company needs to determine how many relationships it can handle and the type of social capital it aims to build. Many companies prioritize the size of their community to ensure they have a massive network with tons of potential relationships. According to British Anthropologist, Robin Dunbar, most people have the capacity to manage about 150 relationships. Brands should focus on their top 150 customers and meeting their needs. While reaching the maximum capacity is great, small social platforms can provide more intimate relations. These platforms include Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Building a social community network can build relationships with loyal customers who will speak highly of your brand on your behalf.
These relationships can influence your business’s future growth because they attract more customers by sharing their experience and reviewing your brand. Posting reviews and sharing brand messages on their online networks generates brand awareness, shapes positive attitudes, and builds a healthy social capital.