Reuters is referencing a new report suggesting that social media surfing is costing UK business billions in wasted productivity as workers play on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media websites rather than … get work done.
Although the initial reaction will likely be to crack down on office time surfing, this may represent an opportunity for clever brands to create considerable buzz if they could channel worker activity a bit more constructively. For example Google’s ranking algorithms now appear to factor in social media elements such as blogs and Twitter, which often offer the freshest and highly relevant content for a given search query. If hundreds of workers are tweeting on behalf of a brand – even if much of that also involved aimless socializing – the synergistic effects on ranking and “buzz” could be considerable.
Although we’re obviously not suggesting this is a viable strategy for most businesses, it’s going to be increasingly difficult to keep workers away from time wasting surfing as social media becomes pretty much ubiquitous – accessible via mobile, office computer, and other devices as well as integrated as a key part of most people’s lives.