Social media plays a vital part in our everyday life. It has also become an integral marketing tool. It cannot be missed that social media has also highlighted particular ethical concerns. Have you ever thought how far businesses can go when it comes to using social networks with an aim to market their products and services? Here are several most common ethical dilemmas that are associated with social marketing.
One of the major ethical concerns in social marketing is consumer privacy. In social marketing, there are some actions that infringe the privacy of social media users. If such actions can potentially harm a person or his/her professional credibility, they are considered unethical. For this reason, entrepreneurs have to be very careful if it comes to accessing or disclosing personal information to social media fans and followers. This especially concerns the situations when advertisers are tracking where consumers shop or browse with a goal to target them with other products or services.
One more important ethical problem about social marketing is spamming. When a business is over-promoting via social media, it is also considered an unethical practice. In some situations, businesses realize that it is what they are doing and they intentionally set out to deceive customers via social media links. Some businesses do not even realize that they are spamming customers – they are convinced that if a person follows them on social media, he or she is interested in their products or services. To some extent, this is true, however, it does not mean a person wants to see sales posts on a certain product every two minutes. Striking a right balance is vital so that customers do not feel bombarded by business.
Attitude to Other People
An important issue that has to be considered is how you talk about others in social media. If you make contemptuous remarks about the competitors or the consumers on social media posts, it is definitely very unethical. Such actions can seriously damage your reputation and credibility.
A popular kind of posts that you can see on social media is contest. There are numerous businesses which are misusing contests with a goal to gain a market research. It especially concerns contests with requests that people submit ideas or designs. In such situations, contestants risk sharing their ideas without any reward. This one is regarded as a very unethical practice.