Understanding what went wrong with your social media marketing efforts can be a tough task. Social media success is a mix of the right tactics applied on a consistent basis. Any one of your practices could be adversely affecting your social media brand presence.
As a social media manager, you have to deal with content creation, posting, analysis and strategy day in and out. In the process, you may have overlooked the basics. This is a list of seven awful social media mistakes to steer clear of at all costs.
1. Posting without a plan
According to a Content Marketing Institute report, documenting your marketing plans helps you implement them better. It also affords you an overview of your content that you wouldn’t have otherwise.
Many small businesses go through the social media stump phase. They decide to do “something” on social media, sign-up, religiously post for the first few days, get deterred when they see no activity and give up on posting as time passes. Brands that are huge on social media get there with consistent and planned efforts. Top brands even dabble in the smallest details – like color schemes and tone of voice – to build a recognizable identity over a period of time. Dove is a great example of this, with its blue and white color scheme and pro-women empowerment tone of voice.
Posting without a plan on social media will leave you with nothing.
2. Paying for bad shortcuts
Many brands rely on paid growth and illegitimate likes to expand quickly on social media. If shady agencies promise you rapid growth in unbelievably short intervals of time, they are probably going to resort to equally shady tactics.
A large following may project a picture of success or credibility, but it can actually be bad for your brand. If most of your followers don’t fit your target groups, your social media engagement numbers will fall, and this can affect your search rankings. Instead, building an organic following at a slow pace, over time, may be better for your brand. Irrelevant followers aren’t likely to buy from you at any cost, so you should think carefully about adding them to your social following.
3. Being overtly self promotional
Self promotion is rarely appreciated by an audience. Do you like listening to someone talk about themselves all the time? Initially at least, you need to create a unique value proposition for your social media pages, to attract followers to them.
Blogging to help your audience solve real problems, is one good approach. But you can’t blog enough to have fresh content to post frequently to social networks, unless you have an entire team of bloggers. Instead, you can find content that experts in your industry write and share that with your audience. This can also help you build invaluable relationships with important people in your niche. You don’t have to find content manually, you can use a content curator like Flipboard or DrumUp to do it for you.
4. Spreading yourself too thin
There are so many social networks to choose from, to build a presence for your brand. You don’t have to be present on all of them to meet your business goals. All you need to do is find your target demographic and focus on the platforms that they are most active on. Anything else will leave you wanting for resources and performing badly on all of them.
You can create and maintain a basic presence on all of them with the help of a social media management software like DrumUp. You can cross-post your content in one go to stay active on multiple platforms. But you need to direct your audience to the networks where they can expect a response from you, so they aren’t left waiting and disappointed.
5. Spamming your wall
Have you tried sharing your posts multiple times on your social pages? Has it helped you increase blog traffic? Maybe not by much. Over-promotion can leave your followers irritated and may lead them to ignore your shares permanently.
The most important goal of your social media marketing is to build trust and connect with your audience. Irritating them will do more damage than good for your brand. Instead of sharing the same post repeatedly, why not share different insights from it? Or ask a question? Or turn each tip mentioned on it into a social media post. Rewrite post text each time to share something, so your audience doesn’t feel like you are overwhelming them with useless information.
6. Not measuring your efforts
Many businesses make the mistake of assuming social media can be conquered with effort and random posting. In reality, social media marketing is a very precise science, right from building your following. If you don’t have feelers out to measure the impact of everything that you are doing, you could get it wrong.
As as industry develops, trends and ideas change with time, as do audience interests. It pays to consistently measure the impact of your content (through social media engagement metrics and follower growth), to ensure that you are investing in the right manoeuvres to achieve the goals that you have set.
Twitter Counter keeps track of Twitter’s top 10,000 accounts, and record trends and changes as they happen. So if you want to see how your follower growth and many other stats are doing, sign in for a free trial here.
7. Isolating your social media efforts
In today’s age of acceleration, your audience is quick and can move between media and networks in seconds. You need a consistent brand presence across these media and networks to have a powerful impact on them. Isolation of social media as a strategy can deprive you of the opportunity to meet your market as a brand on all fronts.
Many businesses make the mistake of outsourcing social media marketing to any agency that doesn’t understand their brand and what it stands for. If you have chosen to outsource your social media management, ensure that it blends in well with the rest of your marketing efforts.