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FLEXO Magazine : June 2012
Addressing some ConCerns FTA left an open ended question for members to comment on the use of social media, many of them were positive regarding the use of social media, but we want to respond to some of those that were not. Comment: I prefer to use emails. Response: FTA will continue to use emails as a way to provide members information, however emails do not allow for interactions about a posted issue. Subscribers to the site can also communicate among each other and perhaps be exposed to individuals they have never encountered before. Comment: You open yourself up for a world of legal issues mixing work and non-work media along with time conflict. Response: Some companies have restrictions on the use of social media in the workplace, although there appears to often be allowances to use LinkedIn for business purposes. Employees need to be aware of their company ’s policies and be sure they are not releasing confidential information. Comment: The only real challenge with social media is that there are too many options. In an age of information overload, I wish we could zero in on a single social media. Response: So true, and thus the survey to determine the best media to use. But as each media addresses networking differently, use of multiple platforms may be beneficial. Comment: Social media in my opinion is not a professional way of conducting business. Just because younger people are “into” it does not mean that it should be embraced. Response: The survey showed that nearly 45 percent of members and more than 4,700 individuals are already using FTA’s LinkedIn site. This is a social media platform already being used by many. Even in the 56 to 65 year old age bracket, 34 percent are subscribed to FTA’s LinkedIn site. The fact that in the near future nearly one billion people will be on Facebook should not be overlooked. Comment: I am already overwhelmed with emails and other communications. Response: You must subscribe to a LinkedIn site or other social media to access it. Social media requires users to opt-in. FTA’s LinkedIn Details 20 Average number of contacts that joined per week from 2009-2010 40 Average number of contacts that joined per week from 2010-2011 60-100 Amount of contacts that have joined per week since the beginning of 2012 4,700+ Total number of current subscribers to the FTA LinkedIn site 45 percentage of FTA membership subscribed to FTA’s LinkedIn site platforms, those wanting to use social media can select which one(s) they prefer. Despite the results of this survey, Facebook use for business communications should not be overlooked as it is being used in some manner by 65 percent of FTA membership. At this time, only 10 percent indicated they were using it for business information and marketing. But, Facebook is the fastest grow- ing social media platform today closing in on one billion users and as it continues to add new features it may make it more conducive to business-oriented use. Many associations have already included it in their suite of social media platforms. Twitter is also commonly used by other associations. Stud- ies show that younger people are more likely to use Twitter. It too is an opt-in service and only those wanting to receive “tweets” of information will receive them. Its use by an orga- nization or company may have its place in communicating quick messages. It is important to stress that the results of this survey are a snapshot in time. The popularity and functionality of various social sites continue to evolve. Results of this survey could be vastly different in a year or two. As more tech-savvy people enter the workforce, Internet-based communication methods will no doubt continue to increase. However, the form they take may be totally different than what exists online today. FTA will continue to research the social media platform(s) that provides the best means to interact with and among FTA members and the flexo industry. The LinkedIn site is show- ing dramatic growth, which has accelerated during the past three years. At least at this point in time, LinkedIn is the most preferred social media platform for FTA to support communi- cations. However, other media such as Facebook and Twitter should not be overlooked. n 26 FLEXO june 2012 www.flexography.org OctOber 15-17 the Pfister hOtel Milwaukee, wi Register today. www.flexography.org How efficient is your workflow? Are you using the right process control tools to optimize your plant’s productivity? Have you identified ways to reduce or eliminate potentially unproductive paths from your work stream? Do you have the mechanisms in place to execute the same plan repeatedly? We ask the questions. You get the answers.