When you are learning something new – not only is it helpful to learn the necessary skills involved, but it’s just as helpful to know what to NOT to do! Along that line, here are 11 major mistakes to avoid in your social media marketing.
Marketing your business on social media is a great move. It allows you to connect with your audience personally, and therefore draw them in to your brand.
But, if you are making major mistakes on your social media pages, you may find that you are putting in a TON of effort, and not getting the results you are hoping for!
Even worse, you could be turning your potential customers away.
So let’s jump in.
11 Major Mistakes to Avoid in Your Social Media Marketing
#1. Not responding to comments & messages.
This is is what is known as “Post and Ghost.” Don’t do that.
It can be simple enough to schedule some great content for your pages, but the real secret sauce is when you are there, on your page regularly, engaging with your people.
When people comment on your post, comment back to them. Answer their question. Be funny and respond with a gif. At least acknowledge their comment in some way.
As far as direct messages, you should absolutely respond to each one. These are people who have personally reached out to you, and you – taking the time to respond – speaks volumes. This is how you build trust with your people.
#2. Not handling negative comments well.
No doubt, negative comments or complaints can be tricky to handle! However, your audience is watching how you respond to these comments.
It can be tempting to delete negative comments, but unless they are mean or offensive in someway, I recommend leaving the negative comment and responding to it publicly.
When you receive a negative comment, handle it with respect and concern, and then try to solve the problem – it goes far in the eyes of your audience.
Also, try to handle at least part of the problem publicly in the comments. Though you may end up taking the conversation into email or a private message (depending on the nature of the message), make sure to say SOMETHING publicly so that people see that you responded and are handling it.
One more note – “responding to negative comments well” means that you are NOT baited into a cat-fight. No matter what tone the commenter is using, YOU need to reply with respect and maturity. No matter what.
The rest of your audience is not persuaded or fooled by one hot-head. They can see when one person is just being rude or unfair. Make sure you are being reasonable, and you will be just fine.
#3. Cross-posting from different social media platforms.
No doubt, engaging with people on social media takes time and effort. It can be REALLY tempting to post on Instagram and have it just automatically post to Facebook as well.
Don’t do this.
People are following your business on social media because they want to engage with you there. They want to see what you have to say, and be a part of the conversation.
It is extremely obvious if your post was just automatically put up. People can see that you are not “really there” and you will not get the engagement you are hoping for.
On the other hand, it’s ok to post SIMILAR things on each platform! You just need to make the post is curated for that specific social media platform and what it requires.
#4. Not being consistent in your posting.
This goes along with #3. When you post consistently, people start to see that you are regularly showing up. Long-term, they are more likely to follow and engage with your brand when you are there consistently.
Keep in mind that social media marketing is – in many ways – a long-term game. You may not see the sales rolling in as soon as you set up your page. It is where you will build trust with your audience over time.
But stay consistent, post regularly, and engage with your people – and you will see the results.
#5. Doing everything on social media.
When you first start marketing on social media, it can be tempting to put your business EVERYWHERE. And before you know it, you are supposed to spend HOURS each day managing your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok (and whatever NEW social media platforms there are by then!).
When it comes to your social media marketing, do whatever you can consistently DO WELL.
If you only have the bandwidth to manage one social media platform, that’s fine! Pick the one where your people tend to be, and dig in. Post consistently there and build your brand.
Maybe someday you can add on a new platform – but only if you have the time and energy to do it well.
#6. Comparing your social media to huge companies.
Sure, it’s great to look at social media pages that are really successful. It can spur you on to some great ideas.
But, being inspired is very different than comparison.
Don’t be fooled into comparing your page to a huge company’s page. Because – newsflash – they likely have a huge TEAM and a huge BUDGET to go along with it.
In the end, run your race well. Do what you can do well. And don’t worry about comparison.
#7. Constant selling on your social media pages.
You should not be selling your products with every post you put up. Nobody likes being constantly “sold to”, and in the end it will turn people off.
In fact, MOST of your posts should be things that connect with your audience, but are not selling. Look for ways to engage your people, ask great questions, entertain them, be educational.
And then, about every 4th or 5th post, feel free to “sell.”
One of the BEST books to read on this idea is “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” by Gary Vaynerchuk. If you are wondering HOW to speak and post well on social media, this book is a must read. (And it’s pretty entertaining too!)
#8. Not having an avatar in mind.
Having an ideal customer, or a “customer avatar” in mind is KEY to marketing well.
If you have not put in the time to define your business’s customer avatar, set aside some time to do so. This will inform every piece of marketing you put out there, including your social media posts.
And in the end, it makes posting on social media SO MUCH EASIER.
It is so much easier to post as though you are talking to this one person you know, rather than to a faceless sea of people online.
When you post with this avatar in mind, the result will be that people just like that avatar will be attracted to your page (and your products!)
#9. Not having any emotion in your social media posts.
In order to truly connect with people, you need to include emotion into your posts.
It’s sounds a little fruity, but it’s true!
Think about the problems that your avatar faces, and post in a way that addresses those problems.
I think this is easier to understand through an example.
Say you sell a home organization system.
You could simply post about the organization system and all of the features that are included.
You could post about what led you to create this system. What was your home and life like BEFORE? How did it make you feel? How did it affect your family? Then you came across this system, and what is your life like now? How do you feel as a result? Can you help other people feel the same way?
Emotion is what people connect with.
Emotion is what sells products.
#10. Not having clear expectations and goals.
Truthfully, social media marketing is a long-term game. This is how you build trust with your audience, and trust is built over time.
Though that trust will pay off, it is not an immediate thing.
Understand as you are going that you will see sales in the long run, and make sure you are not expecting your bank account to immediately explode because you put up your first post.
Be patient and consistent, and it will pay off.
#11. Giving up too soon.
This one goes along with #10. When you are consistently showing up, and posting in a way that connects with your people – it will pay off.
Put your effort into writing great posts and consistently engaging with your audience, and stick with it.
Once you are paying attention to these mistakes to avoid in your social media marketing, and then when you are CARING about the audience on your pages, being CONSISTENT, and posting in a way that CONNECTS well – you will find that being on social media for your business is a great move.
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