Social media mistakes are common. Business leaders starting out to create effective social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc commit mistakes in their learning phase, which is OK; you don’t become a master the day you begin. Consider the case of Alfred.
Alfred has a growing business that he wants to promote online. His friends promote their business on social media so do his competitors, one day he decides to give social a try.
He created his social media accounts on all popular social media like Facebook, twitter, linkedIn, Instagram etc and began promoting his product and services. He wants to build a big fan following so he was posting his business advertisement many times a day.
Initially, his friends and relatives liked his post, but engagement decreased over time, he was not getting any business lead either.
Alfred was afraid, he could not understand what was wrong. Slowly his enthusiasm vanished and now he has abandoned his social media accounts.
Business leaders like Alfred despite continuous efforts don’t get positive results because unknowingly they commit unacceptable mistakes on social media. These mistakes are so subtle that even tech-savvy business leaders may commit them.
Here is the list of Top 10 common social media mistakes I often see businesses are committing when they approach me for a new project. Take a note of these to strengthen your social media presence.
Top 10 Common Social Media Mistakes
1.Posting more than your followers expect:
A business trying out social media for the first time often commit this mistake. In their enthusiasm for building engagement and fan following businesses post content more frequently than their followers can digest.
Followers on social media like to cheer for you, but they are not logging into to their social media account just to cheer you up; what they expect is consistent & relevant updates from you within a bearable limit.
According to buffer blog, this bearable limit varies across social media. For Facebook, Linkedin and google plus, acceptable post frequency is between 1 to 2 post per day, while 5-10 post per day is a common frequency for Twitter.
When businesses break these post limits, they start bothering their followers and followers leave them.
Post relevant regular updates within the prescribed frequency and you will see the increase in your social media engagement.
2. Posting only your product and service advertisement:
This is, in fact, social media blunder. In trade fair, businesses set up stalls to attract potential customers–they meet prospects, engage with them to finally call them to their own business establishment.
Social media is like a trade fair. Meet your prospect on social media and call them to your website ( your online business establishment). Social media are not your shop or business outlet so don’t start hardcore sale there.
Many business owners don’t realize this fact and start filling their social media accounts only with advertisements. What happens to them?
followers slam them on social media floor leaving them alone. In the crowded social media party, they despair engagement. Don’t be one of them.
Share relevant content that entices your target audience–content that is useful for your audience, content that they want to read, content that discusses problems your products and services solve.
3. Little to no interaction:
When I take a new social media project in hand, often I find social media account only with posts, but no interactions. In their hassle to generate regular content for their audience, many businesses forget to respond to comment on those posts.
Assume you go to a shop, where neither business owner or employees are paying attention to what you say. How would you feel? What would you think about business?
Although people are not visiting your business physically on social media, they expect to be greeted the same way. Replying to comments is that greeting. it makes them happy.
Apart from being a courtesy, it is also important for Reputation Management. If customers don’t get a response on their problems, they are going to spread negative words about your business. Don’t let that happen.
Even for building a community of cherished followers, you need to interact with your followers regularly by initiating conversations, replying to comments, sharing your views with your followers.
4. Fake followers
How many of you have purchased cheap fake followers? I can expect many hands raising. It is tempting to buy 10,000 fake followers for $5. But is it worth it?
When you buy fake followers, you are only buying a number to boast on social media. It will not assist any of your marketing efforts because a fake audience is fake indeed. They are not interested in your products and services. They are not going to be your customer ever.
For example, when you share a post on your Facebook business page, it reaches to 2-3% of your followers. If you have purchased followers, you are wasting this free advertising reach on fake followers.
Even if you choose to go for paid advertising, it is always better to target your engaged fans and followers first. Simply because they have engaged with you in past so they are more likely to purchase from you. But when your followers are fake, you miss this opportunity.
My advice is to leave the temptation of the fake following and build a slow but steady fan following of real users who are interested in your products and services.
5. No social media strategy:
If you are on social media because your competitor has a presence on it. That’s is a good reason, but not having a clearly defined social media objective and strategy in place is not good.
Before delving into the oceans of social media marketing, you should first decide:
What do you want to achieve with it? That’s your Social Media Objective.
Who do you want to engage with? That’s your target audience.
And how are you going to achieve your objective? That’s is your social media plan.
These three elements make a successful Social Media Strategy, which is the backbone of all your social media efforts.
If you are happy with your social media efforts without a social media strategy, good to go. But you can always improve your ROI by answering the above three questions.
6.Using too many hashtags:
Starting from twitter, hashtags (#) have now come into the mainstream of many social media like Facebook, Instagram, Google Plus etc. It has become a custom to add hashtags in your captions.
Many businesses add hashtags, just for the sake of adding hashtags and they add as many as they want without understanding the impact of it.
Generally, hashtags provide a way to search topic by interest. When businesses use too many hashtags, they dilute the strength of their message. 1-2 relevant Hashtags are sufficient to build engagement and improve reach.
Longer hashtags are difficult to read, please avoid them.
*9+You have a successful business, your customer trust you, but with increasing competition, you find it hard to keep that personal relationship with your customers that you used to enjoy when you started. In this scenario, building a personal relationship with customers is one of the advantages of blogging and a reason why a blog should be a part of your marketing strategy.
People are busy these days, neither you have time. With 1.8 Billion websites in 2018, the Internet has revolutionized the world and now people prefer to spend time on the internet than sitting together to discuss things.
But why are we discussing this social change on a business blog?
We are discussing it here because it is a big change, which has changed the way we used to do business. When our customers are online, why don’t we connect with them online? I can hear tech-savvy business owners saying that I have a business website, I have an account on all popular social media.
That’s is good. But you are still missing mega opportunity to attract your prospect and develop a relationship with them if you don’t have a business blog on your website. 65% of daily internet users read a blog. It could be YOUR blog if you make it easy for them to find it.
A blog gives you that extra space to share information that you crave to share on your website; a blog is a place where you can share details about your products and services, how they solve specific problems of your target audience.
Here I am listing top 10 reasons why you should have a blog on your website if you want to remain competitive in new age marketing world.
Advantages of Blogging: Top 10 reasons why blog should be a part of your marketing strategy.
Like thousands of other entrepreneurs, John was eager to know–how to improve social media presence for his business and make his marketing profitable.
John has established social media account on popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google plus, hoping that he can grow business with social media. He tries to be active on social media, post content that he likes once in a while. He wonders how will he succeed in his mission, everyone is doing the same.
Any business owner who understands the importance of changing marketing trends has established his business page on social media, while many others join the herd because everyone else is present there. But what to do with Social Media? How to use it to bring awareness about your products and services, build your business brand, grow the business?
If you are like John, a passionate business owner who likes to keep up with modern marketing trends to beat the competition and grow your business, this article will discuss some strategies that can help you grow business with social media.
8 principles that I discuss in this post will help any business owners improve social media presence and save hundreds of dollars spent on your marketing budget and improve your ROI.
How to improve social media presence: The Principles
1. Be consistent
Brand building is about remaining in the top spot on prospect’s awareness. You can follow any social media strategy, but will not get a satisfactory response unless you are consistently posting on social media. When you are consistent on social media, you remain in their mind.
But here I am not limiting consistency to only regular posting; along with regular posting on your social media accounts, you need to keep your message tone, images, and wording consistent with the brand image you want to build.
We, human, have personalities–our actions are consistent with a given situation. We develop behavioral patterns which we reflect in the way we talk, we walk, we dress etc. that’s what we call personality. Right?
If someone is introvert, he is introvert; If he behaves as an introvert one day and as an extrovert the other day, people will start to call him a jerk.
The same thing applies to business brands on social media. When you post content on similar topics, you build a consistent brand perception in your consumer’s mind.
Make a plan of types of content you want to share as a business brand on social media and then stick to it. Reflect your brand persona in the way you interact with your followers.
2. Present on social media where your target audience be.
Many businesses attempt to create an effective presence on multiple social media, but they often fail. Why?
Because business owners have limited time to devote to social media after their hectic schedule. When they try to manage multiple social media accounts, they hardly manage to do any so-called management; things become chaotic and business owners wonder why even after devoting time and efforts, they could not build a community around their brand?
Like any community building exercise, social media community building takes its time.
People don’t trust your businesses in a day or month. To win their heart, you need to believe in the real relationship, initiate real conversation, respond to them, which you cannot do for all the social media platform present on the internet.
You need to prioritize social media presence based on where your target audience spends time. The largest social media may not be the place where your customer spend the most time. It will vary from industry to industry, it will vary by your user location and it will vary with the demographic profile of your target audience.
Choose 2-3 social media to build your brand community, interact with users, let them enjoy real conversations and over time you will build a real fan following for your business brand.
3. Integrate your marketing effort on and off social media
When you hear about latest offer or scheme running a business you are following on social media, you think–ok that’s great. I will walk into the store and see what they have to offer but as you close the mobile app on your smartphone. You just forget about it.
But when you see the same offer in newspaper, billboards and hear about it on a radio. It all reminds you of your plan to visit the store. This synchronization of marketing channels is known as the Integrated marketing approach. You guessed it right, it is very effective to drive sales.
You guessed it right, it is very effective to drive sales.
When a business broadcasts the same message in physical media and social media, it creates synergy for marketing efforts and increases the likelihood of prospects becoming customers.
But, unfortunately. This integrated marketing approaching is missing from the marketing strategy of many small and medium businesses. Many times they air a different message in their traditional advertising while discussing entirely different content with their fans on social media.
Social media are powerful marketing platforms, but to take its advantage you have to have a strategy in place and stick to it.
4. Make a balance between popular content and business.
When I discuss social media strategy with clients, almost always they want viral content on their social media accounts, they want likes on their post, retweets and all. When I ask them why do they want it? I receive the same reply—everyone is doing the same.
I question, “does that popularity brings business results for you? Or is it just a fame agenda?”
Often I don’t get an answer for this question.
I do believe that there should be shareable content on your social media account, but it should not be the only kind of content. Shareable content will bring engagement, but it may or may not add value for your customers. For example: If I have pet care accessory store and I share a viral dog playing with children video on my social media accounts, It might bring hundreds of likes, but will it add some value to my fans?
For example: Suppose you have a pet care accessory store and share a viral video of a dog playing with children on my social media accounts, It might bring hundreds of likes, but will it add some value to your fans?
Now think about a second scenario, where you share videos explaining how people can take care of their pets with some products or services you offer. People may not share that video on their own account, but they will thank you for such content because it adds value to you fans who like pet care and may bring some new customers.
When you draft your social media strategy, remember to make a balance between shareable content and value addition content which we, digital marketers, call editorial content.