Guest Post Blog by Derek Ochej, Communication Professional
As a person who works in the communications field, there are a lot of little things that bother me about social media, but one in particular has become particularly bothersome lately- accounts that I follow posting content that is not relevant. What I mean by relevant is that these accounts, often run by large organizations that should know better, posting content that has nothing to do with their core business.
The prime example I can think of this is something that has been brewing amongst three Canadian Football League teams, the Toronto Argonauts (@TorontoArgos), the Ottawa RedBlacks (@REDBLACKS) and the Edmonton Eskimos (@EdmontonEsks). The employees responsible for running these accounts have started a content piece called #MemeWarMonday. If you are not familiar with what a meme is, it is ‘a humorous image, video, piece of text, etc. that is copied (often with slight variations) and spread rapidly by Internet users’. Memes are the social media equivalent of the e-mail forwards you would receive about 10 years ago from distant relatives and annoying co-workers. The best way to describe what you get during these meme wars is to check it out yourself via this CBC Sports article: http://www.cbc.ca/sports/football/cfl/cfl-teams-introduce-memewarmonday-1.2875470.
This is where relevancy comes in. As a communicator for a football club, what do you think your followers would want to see or read? Perhaps the latest roster updates, historical facts and pictures or video, or maybe behind-the-scenes features with the team’s players? I know these are definitely reasons why I follow sports team. Would I follow them for Internet memes and kids shows from the 90s? Not likely, since there are a bunch of other social media accounts and websites where I can see that stuff.
I know in the age of Wal-Mart and Amazon so many businesses and communicators try to be everything to everyone, especially with the pressure to see increased ‘engagement’ amongst fan bases, but is that increased engagement worth alienating your loyal followers and fans? This is not to say don’t have a sense of humour and not engage the ‘lolz’ aspect of social media, but do so carefully while making sure your content is still relevant to your target audience.