Back in the day, it was said that there were a couple of very taboo subjects that you should never bring up in your business life. One of which was politics. There was an understanding back in the "good ol' days" about your business practices being separate from your personal political beliefs.
With the rise of social media, it seems to be an acceptable practice to associate your politics to your brand. On Inauguration Day, Twitter was just going crazy with updates regarding the new President. Social media has changed the way we look at associating our personal beliefs with our business or brand. Small business has taken over sites like Twitter and Facebook and no one really seems scared to share their political beliefs anymore.
Have we really reached the point where we are not concerned that our political beliefs might drive off potential clients? Let's assume for a second that anyone who has a political belief opposite from yours is someone you're not going to do business with. In regards to the presidential election in November, Obama defeated McCain 53% to 46% of the popular vote. You're running the risk of alienating somewhere around one half of your potential US client base.
This wouldn't happen, of course, because that's just an incredible assumption to make, but it is an interesting thought to consider. What happened? When did it stop being taboo for us to talk about our political beliefs when we're using a social media tool to market our companies or brands?
As a business owner, do you consider your risks to be worth the rewards? Are you okay with possibly losing a handful of clients because you spoke your mind but gaining one that agreed with your opinion?
Can it be possible that it's just a commentary on how far the United States has come that we are able to share those kinds of beliefs with our virtual communities? Diversity and tolerance have come a very long way in the last sixty years. Maybe that's why it's not considered taboo anymore.
What do you think?
If you blog in a business capacity, are you more or less likely to talk about your political standings? Do you even care if people do? Are you less likely to do business with a company that doesn't have the same structure as you do?
Posted by Maranda Gibson, Account Specialist