As a fully integrated communications agency with a strong social media department, it would seem wrong not to comment on Wetherspoon’s decision to shut down all its social media channels – a decision that, ironically, was made public on Twitter.
With no apparent incident in particular behind the decision, reasons cited by the company have included the addictive nature of social media, concerns about data safety and, most importantly, a perceived waste of time.
Everyone that runs a dedicated social media strategy will understand the latter point: curating and maintaining an online presence takes time, energy and effort. It isn’t something that should be done half-heartedly if you’re hoping to reap the full range of social media’s benefits.
Tim Martin, Wetherspoon’s chairman, stated that pub managers have better things to do than cultivating a social media presence – and we couldn’t agree more. A pub manager should be in charge of running the restaurant, managing the team and dealing with customers face-to-face, not handling a company’s social media presence. If this is the approach Wetherspoon was taking, then it doesn’t come as a surprise that the brand hasn’t accumulated a particularly impressive social media following (only 44,000 followers on Twitter, for example), despite enjoying a particularly high level of brand awareness and operating over 900 outlets across the UK.
With social media ad spend predicted to surpass TV by 2020, social media is further establishing itself as a professional and serious marketing platform, and needs to be approached as such. If professionally maintained, the positive impact that a social media presence can create for a business is considerable. In other words, having a professional social media team manage your feeds will help your business thrive – at a relatively low cost.
Measuring our impact is at the core of all our social media strategies, and our clients’ success stories have shown time and again how a brand and business can benefit from having a professionally curated and managed social media presence. Which brings us to our final point: yes, Wetherspoon was right in shutting down their social media channels if they weren’t willing to invest the time and resources necessary to maintain them. It was, however, not right in downplaying the importance of social media marketing for businesses.
If you want to find out how a bespoke social media strategy can benefit your business, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and learn about how we can work together.