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Stay Online – Empower Your Brand!

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Increasing sales and getting more clients is anthem of every business be it a Small &Medium Enterprise or a Large Business House and every company strategist leaves no stone unturned to achieve this. Businesses had been generally concentrating on advertising through print, TV and radio, but these days a gradual shift has been observed in industry trends, online product positioning and marketing is taking over traditional marketing. “Investment in social media applications such as blogs, websites, Facebook, LinkdIn, and Twitter has doubled from 2009 to 2010” (Helium, May 2010)

So what is need of positioning brand online? or Why suddenly every brand is bothered about social media?

Internet is growing as a powerful medium, not only number of internet users but also time spent by users online is also increasing each year. Today’s user has become more savvier in using web, and is becoming a smart multitasker who is not only uses social networking sites for leisure, purchases products online but also uses internet as a learning tool . ‘So when your customer is online, why should not you‘.

One classic example of social media impact and positioning brand online is Barack Obama. Barack Obama, once a little known senator became a household name and won election for President of United States. Major success factor for his victory was campaigning through social media and technology, not only he used it for raising funds but also to create a engaging community of ever-growing supporters and volunteers which paved way to his success. “Obama had approximately 2.5 million Facebook supporters, fifty million viewers on YouTube (campaign related videos) and 115,000 followers on Twitter” ( The European Business Journal, 2010). See the charisma of Social Media that created a history.

Kogi Korean BBQ , is another such success, a small business which grew in leaps and bounds using power of Social Media. Kogi Korean BBQ is America’s first restaurant which is using social media virality to reach out to masses. It sells mixture of Korean and Mexican flavors from its mobile trucks. It uses Twitter to inform customers about truck locations. It keeps its followers engaged by spreading regular tweets about updates like ‘Credit cards won’t be accepted today’, asking them about their favorite flavors, asking suggestions for naming trucks and about best parking spots nearby, etc. It has around 45,000 followers and number of customers/stop has increased from 8 to around 800.

This list of social media success stories is growing and adding feathers to its cap each day.

But what if social media turns hostile ?

Internet provides an extensive platform for people to express their their views and share  their experiences with rest of world. The viral effect which is an advantage of promoting brands online is a double edge sword as a single negative opinion,post or feedback can stake a firm in billions.

This is what was faced by Nestle recently, GreenPeace (an environment protection group) posted  a video clip on you tube which suggests that key ingredient of Nestle’s KitKat Bar chocolate which is palm oil, is leading cause for destruction of rain forests. Nestle tried to curb this video, instead it got more more people to raise their voices against brand. Situation worsened in similar manner for Domino’s Pizza, when a video was released on YouTube depicting an employee putting cheese on his nose and nasal mucous on sandwiches. The reputation earned by brand over fifty long years shredded in few minutes.

Crisis need to pull our socks up!

It is not necessary that once doomed by customers, brand can not live up for long. An interesting example pertaining to the fact is Dell. Everyone is aware of ‘Dell Hell‘ (2005) which was started by Jeff Jarvis to penalize owners of dell for their bad products and even disastrous customer services. It not only axed company’s reputation but also they had to bear biggest financial blows, just because they did not understand the importance of blogs. But situation turned incredibly after three years when they started with their own blogs, did some product recalls, started new customer serving initiatives. Dell is also using Facebook and Twitter to engage with customers. Dell’s priority for paying attention to consumers is growing them each year.

All these stories are evident enough to indicate the impact of Online Reputation on sales of product. Social media is great tool to reach out masses, but the real power lies in hands of users or your prospective customers, thats why its important to stay online and pay attention to users. In case of crisis, it is important to work cautiously by reaching to grassroots of issues, listening to consumers and engaging them to sort issues.

Some key takeaways :

• Maintain a continuous presence on web, keep posting updates and achievements.
• Nurture a relation with masses and  keep them engaged
• Remain vigilant about posts and comments.
• Remain proactive in heeding complaints, negative feedbacks and rectifying them at earliest.

Remember Social Media is like a magic wand which can turn you blockbuster overnight or can turn you to rags in minutes, therefore the need is to use this power carefully.

  • social-media-training

  • There are 2 comments

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