While many businesses seem reticent to adapt to social media platforms, some UK schools are teaching their students all about it. A trial programme has been rolled out in Shropshire and Cambridge and the feedback has been positive.

The lessons deal with all aspects of social media, teaching students how to deal with social platforms and highlighting the important issues of information rights and personal information. This, in turn, allows them to use social networks like Facebook and Twitter in an appropriate fashion.

Following the success of the first trial, a second scheme is now underway throughout the UK. Students will not only learn how to use the platforms safely but also of the importance of managing their online presence more effectively and it is this element of using social media that is important for businesses.

The harsh fact facing businesses is that the internet is not an entity to be ignored, in doing so businesses are taking a risk. When consumers are considering a company, they are likely to Google it first. If the company isn’t managing its brand online, and in particular within social media platforms, a consumer can be exposed to uncontrolled and possibly negative information about the company they have searched for information about.

Businesses which continue to ignore the relevance of social media have no control of what is being said about them within those channels. It is conceivable that only one or two less than happy customers could be disseminating negative messages to thousands of social media users.