Engage with social media, businesses advised

I was quoted in The Star on 27 September 2012 over my presentation on “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t: Social media add a new dimension to online advertising, marketing and brand integrity”.

Engage with social media, businesses advised

KUALA LUMPUR: Businesses must engage with the social media to remain relevant, a conference heard.

Speaking at the International Malaysia Law Conference, Paul Subramaniam recommended that businesses have a social policy at work, including on staff posting disparaging remarks about the company, setting up a dedicated team to monitor social media sites and creating a rapid response team.

“Time is critical. One day is an eternity in social media,” he said at the “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t: Social media add a new dimension to online advertising, marketing and brand integrity” topic at the conference yesterday.

Businesses, he added, should also be prepared to have an external legal team in case of a crisis.

He noted that injunctions were necessary to get the message across and defend one’s rights, although they might not be very useful in social media.

“The laws are not ready. There is still a long way to go,” he said when referring to the redefinition of rights, privacy limitations and copyright issues online.

Another speaker, Alex Charlton, QC, urged caution when ticking the consent box on social media sites to ensure that one did not inadvertently agree to sharing data with the world.

Meanwhile, speaker Foong Cheng Leong stressed on the importance to constantly engage with customers and to respond to comments and not delete them.

“It is important to address complaints promptly and to reply with courtesy and good English. We cannot prevent social media but we can prepare for it and have a contingency plan,” he said.

Foong said consumers’ grievances vented online often sparked heated comments on social media sites.

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