Social Media: 5 Things Every CEO Should Know & Understand

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Nonsense to some? Perhaps. But those old fogey CEOs who aren’t embracing social media in the digital age don’t know what they’re missing. In fact, if you’re a CEO and you haven’t been adapting to the current social environment online, there’s a good chance your entire company is missing out on the benefits of social media.

That’s why it’s important for every CEO to know and understand a few key points about social media. Understanding these key points doesn’t mean that you as a CEO should ignore all of your instincts and jump on the bandwagon as an individual, but you should at least know the context of social media and what social media could potentially do for your business the minute you start embracing it. Here are five things every CEO should know and understand about social media before they rush to judgment.

1. It’s Not All About Facebook and Twitter
Any CEO who thinks that Twitter and Facebook are kids’ games – or that these two sites are the only types of social media out there – doesn’t quite understand what’s going on on the web these days. Other sites, ranging from Flickr to StumbleUpon to Reddit, could be considered social media that have entirely different takes on how people should interact online. In other words, social media is not all about status updates. It can be about business promotion, too.

2. Even Big Brand Names and Companies Use Social Media
Considering the amount of business players who now inhabit sites like Twitter and LinkedIn, it’s plain denial to pretend that legitimate businesses don’t participate in social media. In fact, so many people are using social media these days that if you don’t have social media profiles, people start to wonder.

3. Networking isn’t Worthless
The idea of networking through social media might sound like a cumbersome endeavor, but you’d be surprised at how easy and efficient it can be. Instead of attending a conference, it’s much easier for potential clients and customers to tweet you back. And people pay attention to a company’s online reputation now more than ever because reputations are so easy to spread.

4. Social Media Integration is Not Difficult
Yes, it might seem like a pain to start up a whole new social media empire, but it’s really not as hard as you think. You simply need to employ someone who knows about social media and how it can be implemented into your already-existing structure; it’s not rocket science if you don’t make it out to be.

5. Is Your Reputation on the Line?
Because people can share information so freely now, word-of-mouth advertising is as important as it’s ever been. That means your reputation should be safely guarded – so safely guarded, in fact, that you need to be proactively managing it on a regular basis. If you aren’t on social media, you’re going to find it a lot tougher to handle this task than if you simply organize a few accounts and use them once in a while.

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