Modern technology has made of us less formal when it comes to communication. Just because you’re not always able to see the person in whom you are speaking to, doesn’t mean that you can cease to use good manners. Even in the age of digital media, etiquette is highly important, especially for businesses.
Social media and other web-based forms of communication allow businesses to build strong relationships with their followers, which likely consist of both existing and potential customers. When you fail to use proper digital media etiquette, you run the risk of losing customers due to inappropriate comments or statements. If you are a manager or employee at a workplace where proper digital media etiquette is frequently overlooked, examine these suggestions for restoring superior etiquette among the masses.
With a growing number of social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr, businesses have more opportunities to target specific consumer audiences. Due to the importance of portraying a professional image on all social media sites, many companies prefer to hire tech-savvy employees to act as the “voice” of their social media accounts. When using social media as a way to connect with consumers, be sure you’re also using common business sense, such as typing “hello” and “good-bye.” Businesses must be cautious with the information that they post online, ensuring they don’t share internal company activities with the public.
Many companies continue to use email as a formal means of communication. Professional emails should always be composed using a business-letter tone and format. Never include any inappropriate, personal or embarrassing content within the title or body of the email. Use respect and proper English in both emails and instant messages. These tools should never be used for personal reasons in a business setting, as you never know who may end up seeing these documents.
Blogging communities are often a friendly place to connect with people in targeted niches. There are several things businesses should remember when posting comments on blogs. While the comment section of a blog is commonly filled with opportunities for poor etiquette, maintaining a professional attitude and outlook is essential. Comments should always be applicable, unique and have value for the poster or other commenters.
Basic cell phone use is a must for most businesses, and smartphones are quickly gaining recognition. As more companies move away from traditional desktop and laptop computers and instead use advanced devices like smartphones, proper digital media etiquette is more important than ever. To ensure professionalism, businesses shouldn’t rely on smartphones to compose important company documents. Instead, use a fully functional word processer on a standard keyboard or laptop. In addition, business cell phones should be used only for business activities. Personal calls should only be done from the company phone in the case of an emergency.
With more and more people working from home and traveling for work purposes, conference call services have become a major hit for businesses. When participating in a web conference, location is key. To avoid being rude, try to find a secluded office or room where you will not be disturbed. Avoid any distractions during the conference, as you’ll want to listen to what others have to say and stay engaged. Use good manners as an employee and introduce yourself to the group before presenting.
While popular sources of communication like social networks, instant messaging and email are convenient, a major part of communication is non-verbal. Businesses often prefer to engage in face-to-face communication as this helps to better portray emotions that play a major part in maintaining a positive business outlook. Overall, the key to successful digital communication for any business is to keep in contact with both other employees and consumers as the company continues to grow.