Using Social Media Productively

Article by: Jonathan Daniel

Julia Clay and Kristina Rhoades, communication professionals from Brenau University, shared various tips and suggestions at the Georgia Communication Association for using social media to one’s advantage in the ever evolving field of communication.

Social media is an all-the-rage concept that is growing more and more every day, and individuals should be focused on disseminating important information rather than sharing erroneous happenings such as which fast food line he or she is waiting in.

“If you find that ‘Stuart Blakely’ is always posting, ‘I had a hamburger at Wendy’s,’ or ‘I just bought my new swimsuit for my Bahama vacation,’–If that’s what he’s posting, drop him [or] unfollow him,” Clay said.

One of the most common misuses of social media networking is the dissemination of irrelevant information, and this must change, especially among communications professionals who are being trained to use social media networking to an advantage.

Using social media to one’s advantage is important because it helps establish ways of implementing social media tools to market an organization or brand, but there is a flip-side to that coin. An interesting and fundamental point noted during the presentation is that users of social media should offer information that is valuable to the audience, not just to the organization or individual disseminating the information.

“Come to the table with the mindset, ‘What can I offer my followers’, not ‘it’s all about me and what I’m doing,'” Rhoades said.

What communications professionals must focus on regarding social media is seeking sources of quality information as well as disseminating quality information that may benefit other professionals.

“Follow people [on Twitter] who are providing that good, quality information,” Clay said. “That’s what you want, and that’s what should prompt you to provide good, quality information.”

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