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Usage and Impact of Social Media on the Reputation and Image of CNN
In the contemporary competitive society, the importance of image building and reputation is very vital. In order for organizations to survive these days, it is essential that they must develop and maintain their impression in front of other companies, stakeholders, and the public. However, the present society is technologically advanced and is saturated with various fresh technologies, so is the field of media. Various media organizations have adopted the social media approach in order to build a strong market reputation and brand image. The purpose of this research paper is to assess and examine the role of social media in the success of CNN’s overall brand building. Furthermore, the paper will discuss how social media can be utilized by organizations in order to attain goals in the contemporary media and business world.
The American based 24/7 news channel - the Cable News Network (CNN) is owned by the Turner Broadcasting System, which is a division of the Time Warner group. It is not only the leading news network in the United States but is also among the most watched and credible news channels throughout the world. It has international offices in almost all major cities of the world. Where it does not have its own office, it contacts the local media for coverage and correspondence.
The mission of CNN as stated on their website is as follows,
“To create the finest possible news product and to present hard-breaking, national, and international news, as it unfolds. We deliver unparalleled perspectives across multiple categories, including political, medical, financial, technology, entertainment, and more”
Furthermore the company ensures to remain loyal to the journalistic values, which are the authentication mark of the company . CNN try to include variety in their news and not just broadcasting news about Washington or Middle East. However, at present the company is focusing hard on the social media techniques in order to sustain its reputation in the market .
Social Media Analysis
Differentiating from the traditional or industrial media in a variety of ways the social media has taken over the media industry in the past few years . Social media refers to the interaction between individuals over the social websites through which they share or create information or ideas. The social media platform is an online platform that allows the sharing of ‘User-Generated Content (UGC)’ and is built on the technological structure of Web 2.0 .
Keeping in view the high demands, frequency, reach, and immediacy of social media throughout the world, various organizations made it a vital part of their strategic model. The media industry in particular have also been focusing on the usage of social media for very long and many huge organizations such as CNN have made it a part of their strategic plan. A decline has been evidenced in the viewership of the television as it is losing its audience and more and more individuals are shifting towards internet, therefore, CNN and other major media agencies are now trying their best to focus on digital strategy to cater such audience and to successfully build a reputation . It should be noted that CNN is a huge organization and it does not have to build its reputation over the internet or the social media, but since the market trends are shifting and the global demands are also transforming therefore CNN is now focusing to work for its social media strategies to fully and effectively cater the area .
This has certainly been possible because of the hard work as well as the effective strategy of the organization, which has allowed it to execute hard work and creativity of its team digitally and across the right audience . CNN social media strategy majorly incorporates the use of Twitter and Facebook . The company accounts on both the social websites allow user interactions and direct feedback. The option of direct feedback is also available on the official website of CNN. However, on their pages on Facebook and their twitter account, audience can comment and share their views regarding the news story, post, or any other news of interest .
Research has shown that this method ensures that interest is developed among the audience who finds discuss issues with like-minded peers . The social media of CNN is so strong that the Facebook page is not just only about the updated or sharing ideas or giving feedback but the page also has an option of downloading the CNN app for iPhone (iOS) as well as the users can sign up for various alerts through e-mail and phone i.e. through text message .
The success of their social media strategy can be assessed through the number of audience on their Facebook page and Twitter account i.e. around 1,700,000 . The news stories and updates are posted constantly on the Facebook page and on the Twitter account . The popularity can be calculated as the content generates comments of around 3 to 400 at a time where individuals discuss the issue and various topics. Similarly, the Twitter account of CNN responds quickly to individuals query and comments so that it is known as the best online news agency that listen to its readers and audience .
It should be noted that social media undoubtedly have an impact on the reputation and the image of the company while it also have a positive impact on the vision and mission of CNN. It is one of the many essential elements that drive the success of organizations in the present media and business worlds . The role of social media is critical and is very important; CNN has deeply understood its importance and has therefore designed strategies, which may help the company in sustaining the business in the digital market .
CNN has also ensured that its social media strategy also has a positive impact on its vision as it is all about providing breaking news and variety of news. Furthermore, the social media has made it possible that to update the current issues without any delays unlike the traditional media for which the reader has to wait for one day as the newspaper gets published or the news is broadcasted on the channel . However, it is easy to post news on Facebook or tweet it on Twitter the very next second it happens. This is another successful step and an advantage of the social media that differentiates it from traditional media .
Moreover, researches have shown that news spread like wild fire over the Internet particularly social media. A sound example is the case of Arab Springs as majority of the revolutions and events were planned and took place with the help of social media . It can be said that the reach of social media compared to traditional media is far greater. So if CNN and other organizations utilize it in the right manner than they can spread and attract large group of audience through it and can build strong organizational reputation .
Smart phones are another advantage that can be utilized by media organization while formulating their social media strategies. CNN also have a mobile app (iPhone) for news, which is a part of their social media strategy. Individuals who have the access of Internet on their smart phones and want to stay updated about news download the app so that they can read the news online on their phone . Other organizations can also adopt the strategy can produce their apps as it will attract more audience and will have a positive impact on the overall mission and goals of the organization .
Furthermore, the feedback through social media is quick and tells the company about the pros and cons of the organization or anything related to it. If a reader or user is not happy with the content or news of the channel then he can write it to the channel through its Facebook or Twitter page, which is responded by the organization’s social media staff immediately . Moreover, other users can also share their views and ideas on that subject and can comment on that post easily. The traditional media did unfortunately not provide this option. This is also one of the reason why many individuals prefer social media over traditional media and why organizations these days are focusing more on social media strategies .
In order to succeed in the present media business world, organizations and media agencies should focus on formulating effective social media strategies. Organizations are very well aware of the fact that technology is taking over every industry in the market and in the coming years it will threaten the traditional media and its methods therefore it is high time that the organizations should have looked into social media strategy and adopted it as one of the vital organizational element . These social media strategies should incorporate the use of various social media forums such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler, etc. furthermore it should also present interactive sessions and posts for the readers and users where they can interact and share there views and ideas. The organizations can also follow the strategy adopted by CNN i.e. mobile social media marketing . This has helped CNN in a variety of ways. Since, the present generation prefer smart phones over any other gadget therefore it is important to cater this segment as well .
In order to conclude the paper, it can be said that undoubtedly, the reputation and image of an organization is very important and the organization adopts numerous measures to maintain and improve it. Over the last decade, social media has evolved as a revolutionary medium throughout the world. With its increased frequency, reach, usage, quickness etc. it has now become one of the most critical and vital element for the success of organizations. If organizations understand the need and role of social media in the right manner then it is not difficult that it can easily improve and maintain its image and reputation in the corporate world and in front of the public as well.
This has been very well understood by CNN as the company leads the media industry regarding social media strategy and has also won various awards. CNN has a separate Facebook page, a Twitter account, an iPhone app etc. that is monitored continuously for an immediate feedback. Various news stories, posts, competitions etc. are posted on the page, and on its twitter account in order to engage the reader and the user. The reader can also log in, in order to get updates via email or through text messages.
CNN is one of the leading news networks in the United States and in the world; it already had a fine reputation in the corporate world i.e. with the stakeholders, with other news networks, government, and also with the public and has a sound image. However, CNN found that with the shift in technology it should also focus on new measures and techniques through which it can move along the shift i.e. social media. Therefore it came up with effective social media strategies, which helped the company in enhancing its reputation and image. Therefore, it is recommended that if other news networks and organizations want to succeed in the present media business world and want to build and maintain their reputation and image then they should start focusing on their social media strategies with its effective implementation.
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