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The Four Cs of a Social Media Strategy for Business Communication

Many businesses now embark on a social media campaign (often also referred to as social influencing) to reach their target audiences in the thousands of different social media networks. In addition employees are also increasingly using social media for different business reasons. 

In fact, a social media strategy has now become almost imperative in today’s business communication milieu. But what makes a good social media strategy? Is it enough to only decide which of the different social media networks to use or may be used by employees?

As a social media strategy becomes more imperative, it is perhaps also time to consider the following four Cs when planning the strategy. The four Cs are circumstances, contribution, communication and consequences. These can be explained as follows:

Circumstances

A good social media strategy should always consider the circumstances of the target audience(s) of the business. What are their needs? Who are they? Why are they in that particular social media network? Before deciding on a social media network, make sure that the social media campaign will capture the attention of the right people and address their needs. Also if the target audience(s) will actually be present on that social media platform. Many businesses prefer to establish their own brand communities on their own websites.

Contribution

A business should always consider what positive contribution the presence of a brand or product in a particular social media network can make in the lives of the target audience(s). The idea is that the target audience of the business should not eventually abandon the brand or product's social media page because it perhaps might not be relevant in terms of content or social connections with other users. The business must consider content that will engage the target audience(s) even in the long-term.

Communication

Communication in the social media network is the most important consideration. What kind of communication can be encouraged in a subtle way? Communication about products or the brand of the business should allow for instant, spontaneous communication and not be controlled by the business. The brand of the business should be built through real experiences of the users. In the case of negative communication, the business should respond within the boundaries of a clear communication plan.

Consequences

People join social media networks for different reasons, one being to connect with others who have similar interests. A social media strategy should consider the consequences for the target audience(s), be it in terms of functionality, social meaning or entertainment. Will the target audience(s) be able to find or download useful resources, connect with like-minded people or be entertained by the brand or product?

The four Cs of a social media strategy all point towards one thing: planning is key.

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