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4 Ways to Lessen the Social Media Risks for Industrial Marketing | Manufacturing Marketing

4 Ways to Lessen the Social Media Risks for Industrial Marketing

industrial marketing

As industrial manufacturers jump on the social media bandwagon to connect with customers, planning ahead will minimize your risks.

The use of social networking sites by industrial manufacturers is skyrocketing. Social media is being used by companies to build brand awareness, share information, network, and to interact with customers and prospects on a “personal” level.

This new form of industrial marketing communication is an effective, cost-efficient method of potentially reaching millions of individuals. If your company has not actively engaged in social media, you risk being perceived as out of touch with the younger generation of industrial engineers, buyers and management.

Yet despite the allure, social media is not without risk.

According to NSS Labs, one-third of all web users are attacked by cyber criminals using social networking sites to target victims.

The FBI has identified two primary tactics being used to exploit online social networks:

  • Computer-savvy hackers who specialize in writing and manipulating computer code to gain access of install unwanted software on your computer or phone
  • Social or human hackers who specialize in exploiting personal connections through social networks, manipulating people through social interaction.

The amount of information shared on social networking sites provides a ripe environment for cyber criminals. Information gathered can be used by hackers or competitors to conduct an attack against you or an associate. Potentially, the more you post, the greater the risk.

What can you do to lessen the risks?

1. Establish a social media policy for your company.

Specify what information can be shared on company as well as personal sites, and educate employees how their online behavior could impact the company. Consequences which are stated prior to any incidents are a true deterrent and legally enforceable.

2. Limit the amount of information you share online.

Providing personal information like your birthday and address can increase your risk of identity theft and fraud. Set your security settings to the highest level. Sensitive company information should only be shared in a one-on-one exchange after establishing who is involved. Don’t publish anything you wouldn’t tell your competitors directly.

3. Avoid using obvious passwords.

Change passwords frequently and use different password for multiple accounts. Create complex passwords, using 8 characters or more including letters, symbols and numbers.

4. Be aware of the threats associated with social media.

All internet connections carry the risk of infection and malware. Take the necessary steps to protect your company and yourself. In most cases, you will find that the benefits outweigh the risks.

photo credit: Rosaura Ochoa via photopin cc

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