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Are food companies getting social media right? In a word, 'no'

By Nathan Gray+

24-Apr-2014
Last updated the 06-May-2014 at 16:15 GMT

Fear is a major roadblock to many food companies getting it right when it comes to social media, according to business mentor and entrepreneur Mike Greene.

Many food companies are getting social media wrong because they are controlled by older managers who are scared of the changes that embracing new ways of working can bring. However, firms looking to change should not just hire the first young person to show a bit of skill in social media either, warned Greene.

"It seems to me that a lot of the people who hold the budget [for social media] at companies are that little bit older, so they are not really naturally with social media," he told FoodNavigator after speaking at the 2014 Food Vision event in Cannes.

"It scares them and they don't know what to do, so they stick to the media they know," explained the business mentor, philanthropist and author.

"To me it's a bit like when the car was invented, and people were going around on horses. They couldn't believe that it was really necessary. They couldn't believe that it would be as reliable as their old way of doing things.

"We're seeing that with social media versus traditional media, and people just aren't making the transition, because of fear."

However, Greene also warned that it is 'crazy' to just assume that younger people will be better at social media in a business setting.

"They might use it, but that doesn't make them an expert. You need to know whether they know about social media, because there are rules that work, and ways that work, and the right mix of video and imagery and content is really important to get successful social media."

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