It is hard to go anywhere these days without feeling the influence of social media. On a typical day, this popular medium is thrust upon us in so many different ways that it has become impossible to ignore. Whether it is a printed message on bus tickets encouraging us to follow the operator on Twitter, or various hash-tags appearing in the bottom corner of the screen during television programmes— we just can-not seem to escape it.
Operating as an online print store, printed.com already has great knowledge of the benefits such online activity can bring to a company, and has turned to social media to further boost its presence in this modern arena. Founder, Nicholas Green, describes social media as ‘crucial’ to the modern print company, in that it can target so many people across a host of networks.
“Social channels provide a fantastic opportunity to communicate with relevant audiences, as well as engaging with new ones too,” says Green, adding: “It has reinvented the concept of customer service, reducing the distance between customer and retailer, and creating a more personal and tailored approach.”
He concludes; “I strongly believe companies should master the balance of utilising a variety of social networks to their competitive advantage.”
The point rings true at printed.com, as the company is active on a number of social networks. Through Facebook, it builds a community of designers and creatives to help create a relationship with customers and offer content that will appeal to them. Elsewhere it uses Twitter to inform customer of the latest news and launches, LinkedIn for corporate development updates, and creative ideas in video form via its own YouTube channel.
Drawing on this success, Green concludes: “Social media has undoubtedly aided the growth of printed.com. We track usage, engagement and revenue by channel each and every week, to clearly demonstrate the value that it offers to the business as a whole.”
Source: “Taste for success: Social media” (Print Monthly, pg. 67-69)