As business owners, we could likely agree that the success of our business social media accounts can be measured in the number of new customers and clients we acquire, not the number we alienate. That’s why you might want to consider certain subjects off limits when it comes to your posts. I would like to argue that one of those subjects is politics.
Nearly 40 percent of adults claim they choose not to associate with people whose opinions they disagree with online, according to an Intel mobile etiquette survey. Translate that into business terms, and you could lose nearly half of your customers and networking connections because they don’t share your political opinion.
Most would agree our political standing is a personal choice shaped by our individual beliefs, values and even economic status. So why on earth do political posts find their way onto businesses’ social media accounts?
You’ve Been Conditioned to Over Share
For starters, Americans are over sharers. In fact, a whopping 90 percent of U.S. adults agree others share too much information online, and 24 percent share political opinions online, according to Intel.
It’s true. The nature of social media to reward us with likes, follows and shares for posts that engage, has us jonesing for attention like conditioned lab rats. We will share anything from our child’s first potty training picture to announcements that we are going to bed – because, you know, everyone cares.
Politics is Like Football
You have “your” team and when your team is playing a game or under fire, you take it personally and feel obligated to defend or promote them. The problem is that politics is a little more personal than football and a lot more complex. As mentioned earlier, politics often hinges on your personal beliefs and values- touchy stuff.
As a business owner, you have to understand that your customers likely have a variety of political beliefs. Forcing your business to take a side by sharing a political post that represents your personal stance could alienate a certain percentage of your customer base. And that’s no good for business.
Think before you post.