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Co-op 4.0 

 


At ACLC 2019, the term, Co-ops 4.0 was floated. Today, we are living in an environment in which technologies like Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), robotics and data analytics are changing the way we live, work and play. This environment is described as the fourth industrial revolution. It is important that co-operatives embark on digital transformation to continue to be sustainable, relevant and impactful in the future.

 

It’s hard to believe if anyone tells you he/she hasn’t heard of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube or LinkedIn. Or even TikTok. These are interactive digital technologies that individuals use to create or share information/content virtually with their friends, shop, seek entertainment or even to achieve professional goals. In short, these are called Social Media and they have an impact on the way people, especially the youth, think and interact on a day-to-day basis.

Businesses are leveraging on social media to engage their followers, build a brand presence and connect with potential customers. If your co-op does not have a social media account, it’s never too late to start one and here’re the whys.


Social Media allows you to reach out to more people

A study by the company, We Are Social, has shown that Singaporeans spend close to seven hours a day on the Internet. That’s almost the same amount of time that we spend sleeping.

Considering the amount of time that people spend online, a post on social media will garner more views than a print advertisement at the bus stop. This is because social media make it more available. If you have budget, use social media to complement other formats of media to increase your reach.

If your business has content that resonates with your followers, it will generate more eyeballs as they will share your content on their own page where their friends or even friends of friends would see it.

In short, Social Media has a multiplier effect which can amplify your reach.


Understand your customers better through Social Media

Social Media allows businesses to get insights from their posts. You’ll be able to analyse questions like “Do my members prefer reading about my products or company events?” or “Do my members prefer looking at photos or watching videos?”.

The page managers will be able to view the data such as number of people reached, clicks, likes and shares on each post. From there, you can customise the type of posts and content that will generate greater interests among your followers and you can constantly finetune your posts to engage your followers better.

Additional functions on certain platforms allow you to gain deeper knowledge of your followers’ interests for example doing a poll on Facebook and Twitter posts, and Instagram stories.

Social Media evolves over time, providing more tools for businesses

Previously, you may not see a need to dive into social media as your co-op only reaches out to a niche group of audience and having a website could serve your needs.

However, social media has evolved over time. New functions have been introduced to better the experience. For example, in the Facebook site, apart from your main page, you can also create a group by tapping on ‘Facebook Groups’ to share updates among your community. This would be helpful if you want to create a private, close-knitted environment for your members to exchange ideas and share views easily in a less formal situation. Yes, the group can be set as private just for your members only.

Another example is the Instagram Stories which was introduced in 2016, a good six years after Instagram started in 2010. The poll function can help you better engage your followers. Such game-changing features may provide opportunities for you to reach a new group of users.


With new platforms and trends springing up quicker than you buying your next cup of coffee or bubble tea, it is never too late to keep up with the evolving landscape of the digital world.

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