Nicholas Christakis: The hidden influence of social networks
Defining SWOT Analysis In Social Media
Just in case you are not familiar with the term, SWOT Analysis analyzes the STRENGTHS, WEAKNESSES, OPPORTUNITIES & THREATS of a new venture and is often utilized during iterative business process management or business process improvement strategies as well.
In Social Media SWOT Analysis, there are several essential building blocks that you must always remember to translate as well: Relationship Building (which should be the foundation of social media networking), Locating Your Community (along with your targeted audience because they are essentially, apart of your community), Customer Service (this also entails knowing where your services are required and how to be found), Content Generation (generating excellent content means more views, more views means more followers, more followers equals more collaboration, more collaboration equals more opportunities), SEO or Search Engine Optimization (identifying the popular key industry words, terms, definitions, or people), and Business Research.
“Studies have shown that 50% of people who follow businesses said they were more likely to purchase from the companies they engage with on LinkedIn. So clearly having a sound presence there could be incredibly beneficial for your business. But of course we all know that any social media takes time and planning. Much like a game of chess, going in with a solid strategy is vital, so we’ve compiled a Six Step Success Strategy for Using LinkedIn for Business to help get you going. We’ve written about LinkedIn being more than just a place for job hunters in the past, but this time we’re talking more along the lines of how to use it for business and we’ve included a visual to help you out.”
Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats… Recognizing YourPotential
In this blog, we will be discussing and translating the most common questions that are asked in SWOT Analysis into the social media perspective:
1. What is the situation now? From the social media perspective, what is your current situation? Are you looking to change careers, start a new business, looking for a job, looking to make some online sales utilizing e-commerce or looking to convert social media site users? Are you new to the social media realm? What are your current goals in being involved worth social media? If you can effectively evaluate why you exist in social media, then you will successfully find what you are looking for because you at least have a road map.
2. What are the factors that affect your success and how do you compare? Factors that may affect your success would probably be the social media networks that you utilize, how much time that you put into networking, and the amount of time that you spend providing purposeful or tailored feedback to certain individuals or customers. When comparing yourself to other social media networks, what are you doing different and how can you incorporate some of the results-proven tactics or strategies without looking like a copycat? Don’t worry about how many people who you have in your network or how many social media platforms that you are on, this does not guarantee anything. Just make sure that you are utilizing the right platform for your business or endeavor.
3. How does the economy and other external environmental effects impact your efforts? By connecting with others that may require your services or products and connecting with people within your same field or industry without trying to force the invisible hand theory, you can do some great online market research and further streamline your approach. By understanding the economy and the demographics involved, your targeted audience will eventually reveal itself to you without you having to waste your time with customers or employers that do not require your services. Essentially, looking at social media networking from this perspective will save you a ton of time!
4. Who are our/my major competitors? You may find in social media, obviously, that you are not the only one searching for something, offering, or pitching. So who are your competitors in social media? Who are the people on your specific social media platform that have the juice, the connections, and the pull? Once you figure this out, “friend” them or connect with them online. Study what they do and how they do it, then incorporate what they do into your social media networking style. What other platforms are they on? What are they using to drive traffic to their page or website? What other methods of redirecting or back-linking are they utilizing to gain the attention of a certain audience? Are they blogging and if so, what are they blogging about?
5. What threats are there to me or my business? By identifying social media platforms that do not suit what you are attempting to accomplish is your first enemy and in turn, your first imminent threat is yourself. Most social media threats are indeed self-inflicted threats. Do you respond to people in your network in a timely manner? Is your online marketing campaign sleazy? Are you a spammer? Do you carry on in forums babbling? Do you have the facts straight and do you treat people like people should be treated? Other threats may be not responding to customer complaints or returning a message from an HR representative or Hiring Manager that may be interested in you. Another threat may be someone looking to get you involved with something that has absolutely nothing to do with what you are trying to accomplish. Analyze your threats! Know the pitfalls of social media usage and make sure your branding is social media tight!
“As a business, the foundation of your success on LinkedIn begins with your LinkedIn profile. Do you know if your profile is showing up in search results? If it’s not, you may be losing valuable opportunities and ideal clients. And after you’ve ensured that your profile is showing up in the right places, you’ll want to do what it takes to make the connections your business needs.”
So after reading this blog and answering these questions, you should have a pretty good idea where you are and where you are headed online. If you are not quite sure, then maybe you need to stop what you are doing and reevaluate how you process social media usage.
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