10 Social Media Mistakes to Avoid
Social media has grown into an influential part of developing both a business reputation and a relationship with the public. The ability for people to interact with their favorite companies, learn new facts about upcoming products, or get a glimpse at “behind the scenes” of big brands is an intriguing prospect for consumers. However, not all businesses are using social media to its optimum potential. Too many have a hard time justifying the time, effort and expense to continue operating a robust social media program. Unfortunately, many of those companies are missing out on incredible opportunities by making these social media mistakes.
While the below list of social media mistakes is not comprehensive by any means, it does indicate 10 ways in which most businesses are not maximizing their social. Keep reading at the end for a few infographics which showcase even more social media mistakes businesses are making!
Not Leveraging Video Content
One of the most prevalent forms of media on the Internet is that of video. Live streaming apps and websites are growing quickly in popularity. Marketing your business in this fashion may help you target a wider audience as more people are turning to video content as their primary method of gathering information whether on Facebook, Twitter / Periscope, or SnapChat. Whether it’s for entertainment or education, live streaming video can play an important role in your future social marketing. Facebook’s current preference for prioritizing livestream events in your notifications is something you should not miss out on.
Not Having a Visual Voice
Social media content that is accompanied by an image is more likely to be interacted with by your target audience. It’s believed that an image is worth 1000 words, which is helpful when services like Twitter only allows 140 characters. Images appear prominently in the news feed of every social network, and the highest growing social networks of Instagram and Snapchat are based purely on visual content. Every company needs to develop a Visual Voice and take advantage of this.
Not Engaging Your Audience Proactively
It’s not enough to simply post something you think your target market will enjoy. Businesses need to interact directly with their fans on social media as a form of customer service. It builds trust, which is monumental when developing a loyal customer base. Those who follow your business accounts will do so in order to feel more connected to the brand. As you grow a large following it is impossible to reach out to every follower, but make it a habit to reach out to a few a day – other followers will watch how you interact and this will help build long-term trust with all.
Not Sharing the Right Information
When posting updates to social media, you want to make sure that it fits the niche of your business. You don’t want to go into detail about automobile manufacturers if you sell smartphone cases. You don’t want to confuse your audience about your practices. You don’t want to post random quotes if they are completely irrelevant to your brand. Center the information on the kind of business you operate or important facts that are complementary. Twitter is the best place to study how others do this, and a random Twitter search will turn up something like Ehsan Bayat’s Twitter feed, which is a good example of how to share niche information (I hope my own Twitter feed will be another good example!). It’ll help strengthen your reputation with those who are more likely to use your products or services.
Not Boosting Posts
Sites such as Facebook and Twitter offer services to promote your content by “boosting” them. It’s ideal to take advantage of services such as this in order to focus on a wider range of people. Otherwise, you’ll have to rely on those who follow the accounts to share your material. Social media is good for keeping fans happy, but you still need to develop that audience by promoting your content. Make it a habit of promoting your posts on a regular basis outside of your current following to breathe new and relevant life into your social media program.
Not Offering Social Media Specific Discounts and Sales
Social media can be an excellent tool to inform your customers of special discounts and sales. This can also be used to encourage new users to follow the business on these websites. Many businesses will give incentives such as advertising Facebook-only coupons that are only displayed on that website. It gives people a reason to follow the account while promoting sales. Provide social media specific incentives and watch your loyal following grow and be more tuned in to future specials.
Not Building Professional Networks
Your customers are not the only ones who use social media. Manufacturers, distributors and other professionals also utilize these hubs. Connecting with those related with your business gives you the opportunity to create vast professional networks that may prove to be invaluable later on. Use the concepts of social selling to develop relationships with business partners that are also on social media.
Not Leveraging Paid Social
Most social networks now provide companies with an advertising platform that can draw attention to their business. Many of these are pay-per-click campaigns that can be used to microtarget specific demographics. Considering the sheer number of people using these sites in today’s market, it may be wise to invest in some kind of advertisement campaign. While these sites may be useful as free outlets for information, never underestimate the value of a well-placed ad targeting your specific demographic. Experiment, measure, optimize, and repeat.
Not Maintaining a Minimal Publishing Frequency
Although the quality of your content must be excellent, you should also put effort into quantity. Posting one message per week is simply not going to be enough to attract the consumers you want. You need to put effort into creating a reliable source of information regarding your business. Content is unfortunately now a commodity and many social networks have become large search engines, so unless you are posting at a reasonable frequency, your social presence will become irrelevant for many.
Not Having Data-Driven Content Publishing
Some content is more efficient at attracting people during specific times of the day. This is where analytic tools come into play for social media marketing. You want to post content at the most opportune moments in order to engage new and return users. For example, some health content is better received at 8:05 in the morning as opposed to 1:00 in the afternoon. Keep a close eye on these metrics as they will dictate the best times to release your new content. Every social media strategy should be a data-driven one.
Whether you’re operating an online store or you have a retail brick-and-mortar shop in town or are selling services to other businesses, social media can and should play a prominent role in your marketing efforts. The line between the Internet and reality isn’t as wide as some may assume, and the success of your business could hinge on knowing how thin that line really is. If you think that your social profiles are not performing like they should, audit your social media program using the above as a guideline and see where you might be able to augment or improve upon your current efforts.
Is your business guilty of making these social media mistakes? What other mistakes do you see out there?
Looking for more social media mistakes that businesses commonly make? Check out these infographics below for more ideas of what to avoid!
FTC disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I only work with products, events and/or companies I believe my readers will benefit from. All opinions are mine. This is disclosed in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.