Technology has changed the ways in which we do business. This is especially evident in the way in which social media such as telecommunications systems, instant messaging, the World Wide Web and social networking platforms now function. New computer hardware and software platforms are being developed around a social element. Businesses that interact directly with their customers and product and service providers need to stay abreast of technology and its influence on social media and be fluent in the use of social technologies.
The many forms of social media include any means of communication and interaction that involve a social element, including email, social networking, instant messaging and chat, telecommunications, videoconferencing, forums, blogs and even normal human communication such as face-to-face conversations, business meetings, presentations and body language. Social media is an integral element of any business as humans must communicate to get work done. Social media interactions are becoming increasingly important as technology is adapting to include a more human-friendly element, including social-based operating systems and communication-oriented software applications.
Technological advances have revolutionized the ways in which humans communicate. Technology lends itself well to social media and is now used in presentation software, groupware, messaging systems, telecommunications networks, Voice over Internet protocol communications, videoconferencing, social networks, online chats, interactive message boards, websites, blogs and most other forms of social interaction. Your customers now expect you to use some form of social media technology to facilitate customer service and provide information.
The influence of technology on social media has been largely beneficial to businesses. Internet-enabled telecommunications technologies let you communicate with your customers in real-time and respond to issues much more quickly than was possible in manual systems. Your employees are no longer hindered by equipment availability, time zones or geographic distance and can now communicate seamlessly using technology. This has allowed many businesses to employ a global workforce and increase their productive output. Even if you have a small, single-location business, your employees can still leverage social media technology to communicate with each other and with their customers even when out of the office, and you can use a blog or social network to stay in constant contact with your customers.
Although technology has had a largely beneficial impact on social media from a business perspective, it might not be as beneficial for humans. Social networking removes the element of face-to-face interaction and could cause social isolation. Your employees could also be more stressed if they are always “on call” and unable to detach themselves from work and enjoy work-life balance, resulting in lower productivity levels.