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Social Media Fear? To Quote the Eagles: “Get Over It”

The Eagles band from California. From left to ...(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I saw the Eagles play the PNC Arena in Raleigh a few weeks ago. You know… Hotel California. Desperado. Witchy Woman.

It was a rocking show from a band—and a brand—that has been going at it for more than 40 years. I’m a huge fan and I wanted all my friends to know I was there.

Which is why I was pretty disappointed to see signs at the security gate, banning phones, texting, photos and videos inside the arena. I thought it was a joke, but… no. The Eagles were dead serious and the arena staff was fully empowered to enforce the rules. Several times, I saw ushers scolding concertgoers, keeping them from posting selfies from this historic event.

Come on, guys! Take it easy!

All summer long, I’d seen only one Facebook post related to the Eagles big tour. I do not listen to local radio much, so I had not heard about ticket sales through that avenue. Come to think of it, how did I even know about this concert? Well, I was lucky enough to catch their documentary last winter: History of the Eagles and I was captivated by it enough to search tour dates. However, if I had not seen the documentary, how would I have known there was a tour?

Here’s the thing, and this is something that successful brands—certainly bands today (even old-school bands like the Grateful Dead)—understand acutely: when you have zealots willing to do your marketing for you, you ought to let them. Moreover, social media is free(!) and an easy place to do it. Granted, the Eagles have been notoriously proprietary about their intellectual property—they have every right to be—but a little Instagram, Facebook or Twitter love might have opened the doors to finding a new generation of audience members, sold a few thousand more tickets on the tour or allowed their dedicated fans some much deserved bragging rights.

When your fans are talking about you on social media, the word gets out and grows your pool of potential customers.

The same holds true at your organization. Your most vocal fans could be your staff. Rather than being afraid of how they spend their time on social media, perhaps you would be better served encouraging them to post about the fun events your organization throws, the community outreach you are doing or how excited they are to be assisting clients during busy season.

Are you letting your staff brag about you on social media? You can certainly give them a boost by encouraging them to reach out to friends to participate in the AICPA’s #CPAPOWERED campaign. And if you need some guidance on social media, the AICPA can help. AICPA members can access the Social Media User Guides to understand how social media can help you.

Is your favorite band big on social media? Do you see how it’s driving their success?

Heather O'Connor, Senior Communications Manager, American Institute of CPAs.

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