Social media is an incontrovertible force for information. The rate at which it has expanded domestically and globally makes it primed as a source to be utilized for the expansion of business. This information, as we have seen, undergoes an almost inexplicable transformation as it glides through the realm of public opinion. And in this metamorphosis, both good and bad things happen.
As a business owner, you have painstakingly crafted a public image and sought to hire the highest quality employees to maintain this face-to-face reputation. Coupled with a high quality product, this customer engagement is a large part of why the company has been successful. However, with an expanding marketplace online, a company’s branding and reputation is additionally important and increasingly at risk.
Who is advocating for you and protecting your brand and reputation in the virtual world?
We sat down with Jenny Wolfram, CEO and Founder of BrandBastion and lawyer who specializes in brand protection, to talk about the potential online risks to a brand and how to protect a business from the pitfalls of a community that never sleeps.
Social media is a great place because of the fact that anyone can comment on anything. In that way it’s a great channel to connect with your customers and fans. At the same time, that’s where the greatest risk comes from – the fact that anyone, 24 hours a day, someone might be commenting something that is not malicious that could hurt your brand or be a security risk for your fans or could be a legal risk.
Social media is a great place because of the fact that anyone can comment on anything…at the same time, that’s where the greatest risk comes from…
Regardless of the sheer size of the online community and growing legal ramifications for existing in a society where information is exchanged in this manner, few have considered how this may cause legal issues, as well as problems for a company’s profitability.
Different industries face different issues (i.e. gaming industries face piracy and unauthorized content). Due to the nature of their business, some companies have very strict legal duties.
Any kind of company that is running paid advertising can be held liable for comments that are part of the ad. Any time people can comment on your published posts can be held liable for that comment because you’re promoting that content. These comments may have been written by completely random people and not employees of the company, but these comments have become part of the ad.
It’s not always a legal risk but sometimes a risk to your brand and business in the form of retail loss.
This is the main legal risk that companies do face when they are on social if they aren’t actively monitoring and moderating their comments and engagement. It’s not always a legal risk but sometimes a risk to your brand and business in the form of retail loss. It’s missed opportunities when you’re not paying attention to the comment side.
BrandBastion was created in 2013 as a response to the different risks companies face in social media. There was a notable absence of a solution that would be technology driven but still very customizable and accurate when it comes to removing harmful content. They work with a range of different industries who hope to protect their brand.
This is gradually becoming more known around the world. Back in the day when we started using e-mail, not many people were using anti-virus software or spam filters, but as we move more into social media we’ll see the dark side that needs to be addressed. This is something more and more companies are recognizing. The kind of risk involving paid advertisement also presents good opportunities.
The kind of risk involving paid advertisement also presents good opportunities.
The first part is being aware of the fact that you may be receiving anything at any time of the day. Planning ahead of time and doing the research to know what issues you care about as a brand will help you to know what kind of concerns you want to be addressed.
The second is putting in around-the-clock monitoring. You can choose to have employees do it in house or contract companies like BrandBastion to take over what can be a very time-consuming and expensive endeavor.
Regardless of the option you choose, opting to ignore the problem could cost your business in the long run and remains a huge gamble with the rapid expansion of opportunities in online advertising in social media circuits.
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