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Social Media: A Must-Have Tool for Businesses

In this blog, we have shared many successful stories about how social media can make significant impacts to businesses. Once again, this CNN news video reinforces such idea and suggests that social media is the “key” to small businesses. That is, to survive with social media or to vanish --- which option will you choose?

Social media are more than just a tool that leverages sales. People must understand both the “social” (interactions) and “media” (communications) aspects of this tool. The core of social media is to “build a long-term relationship.” In addition to sales, companies often share useful information with fans and followers and keep them engaged.

Interestingly, the mass media often reports the significant impacts of social media to small businesses. As compared to small businesses, are social media not as useful as to big companies? For those big companies that do not have a strong social media presence, I wonder if it is because they do not have a clear social media policy. Without guidelines, different business units may communicate with their stakeholders with inconsistent messages. Consequently, it is difficult for them to manage their online identities in social media. The good news is big corporations, like Starbucks and McDonald’s, are very “big” in social media. From the examples of Starbucks and McDonald’s, one should notice that social media also work for big companies. What are your opinions?

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