Social networks are touted as the most profitable and effective marketing platform today. Millions of people check their social media accounts on a regular basis not just to communicate with family and friends but to check the latest news, look up reviews or recommendations, share videos and pictures or for entertainment. It is no wonder that the vast majority of businesses nowadays go to great lengths to establish a business presence on social networks.
Now while social media is a resource readily available to any business, not many can use them well. Your business does not just magically get better just because you are on social media and it is easy to make mistakes without even realising it.
When it comes to marketing on social networks, knowing what not to do is just as important as implementing a sound marketing strategy. In this post, we go over a few of the most common mistakes that businesses make when marketing on social networks like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Not engaging fans and followers on social networks
Reputable often point out that many businesses treat social media marketing as though they were publishing or broadcasting their ad on television, radio and in newspapers. Perhaps the biggest mistake one can make when marketing on social networks is to undertake the process as you would with conventional marketing channels which are restricted to one-way communication. You hope that enough people come across your ads and repond to them, so you generate a return on your investment.
Social media marketing is different and when marketing on social networks, your audience expect you to:
- Ask and respond to questions
- Encourage and respond to comments
- Respond and share the posts of fans and followers
Poor handling of negative feedback from customers, fans and followers
When your business is getting bashed on social media for any number of reasons, it can be tempting to hit back. Unlike other channels for , social networks give you the means to respond directly to detractors. Before you make that mistake, however, marketers should ask themselves -- is this how you want people to perceive your business? Arguing with your detractors on social networks can make your business appear unprofessional regardless of whether the response was warranted or not.
Some businesses ignore negative feedback and complaints which is perhaps even worse than fighting back. There is nothing worse than being ignored when you have a legitimate complaint about a product or service.
So how should you respond to negative feedback about your business? Do it in the same way any respectable business would by offering to help. Extend all the assistance that you can in the hope of restoring the confidence of a scorned customer. It’s quite possible that with a little nurturing, some of your detractors can turn into the most loyal fans and followers on social media. In many cases, merely offering to help is enough to turn negative feedback into a positive one.
Relying too much on automation
Automation is essential to any web marketers looking to ramp up their business. However, be careful not to over rely on automation as you could end up annoying fans and followers. One example is to automatically duplicate posts from one social network to another (RSS feeds, Instagram to Facebook) which can look silly and unprofessional.
Businesses need to know what areas of social media marketing to automate and what to check manually. While you can use automation tools like Buzzsumo, Hootsuite and Buffer to republish evergreen content on your social media accounts, it is almost always a bad idea to do the same for all your social media updates without reviewing them beforehand.
Using stock images
Another common mistake among social media marketers is to use what is known as stock images. Using such images as-is is not ideal for marketing and more so on social networks where the quality of visual content is critical.
While pictures are useful for breaking up text on your social media updates, generic stock images will not help you captivate a user's attention nor encourage fans or followers to engage your business in any meaningful way. These images do not tell people anything about your brand which means that most people are bound to scroll right past your social media updates.
So there you have it -- a few of the common mistakes one should avoid in social media marketing. Social networks are gold mines for online marketers but only those who make an effort to do things the right way. Hence, knowing what not to do when promoting your products or services on social networks brings your business one step closer to success.