Businesses have discovered the power of social media and have flocked to popular social networks to attract leads, pitch sales, and service customers. Despite their concentrated effort to connect with audiences via social sites, only a few businesses have thrived there.
All things considered, improper approaches to social media provide the best explanation for failure. Unlike some conventional thinking, companies cannot achieve success only by opening accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other venues. In fact, a successful social media strategy takes a lot of work.
If you want to achieve great things using social media, you must have realistic expectations and invest your time, money and effort in ways that will contribute to your goals. Additionally, you should learn to avoid making the following seven harmful mistakes on social media.
1. Making Aggressive Sales Pitches
Some businesses assume that social media exists as a channel for promoting products and pushing sales. Even though you can at times announce promotions and make special offers on your social media profiles, too much of that activity will turn off your audience and cause your reputation in the online community to fade.
As you avoid making the mistake of constant advertising, remember also to avoid bragging. Rather than constantly hyping your products and showcasing the excellence of your brand, focus on building relationships. If you make people feel important and create value for them, they can become enamored with your business and have reason to choose you over your competitors.
2. Bombarding with Messages
In the first place, you should remember the difference between creating value and becoming a nuisance. In contrast to the many social media failures of the companies who bombarded their audience with incessant messaging, try to take it easy. As much as you want to get noticed on social networks, you should always ensure to post content in moderation.
By all means, you should create valuable content that solves problems and improves lives. As you go about your work, however, make sure you always make your content interesting and diverse: from insightful articles to short and funny reminders. Always create fresh content rather than sending out repetitive messages that can quickly bore your followers.
3. Being Too Passive
Moderating your use of sales pitches and restraining the number of messages you send on social media should never keep you from having an active social presence. Such a mistake goes on display countless times when companies create a Facebook page only to leave it idle, hoping for people to discover it.
Actively engage your audience by maintaining a lively interactive presence. Such an approach requires a lot of time, so make sure you enlist the help of your staff. Also, you should respond to every comment and feel free to share fun content such as jokes and memes that your customers might enjoy.
4. Ignoring the Community
Your effort to engage social media users should help you avoid the common mistake of ignoring the community. In contrast to firms that only use social networks to publish information, your business should create a two-way street where you and your followers routinely converse and share content. When you talk to your fans and socialize, you give a human touch to your brand.
Even when businesses create meaningful dialogs on social media, they sometimes fail to leverage the full value of their audience. How to achieve the latter? For example, you can actively solicit feedback from customers to learn about their experiences. Doing so helps your brand appear transparent and sincere while supplying you with a stream of information that can help you better serve your customers.
5. Poor Customer Care
Speaking of customers, successful firms have discovered that social networks provide a fantastic channel for customer service. Never make the mistake of ignoring their comments, especially when they come from dissatisfied customers. Rather than allowing customers to feel unimportant and ignored, make sure you promptly address their concerns.
Even when people say embarrassing things about your brand, you can use the situation to display your dedication to customer satisfaction. Furthermore, as the world looks on, you will earn their trust by demonstrating that you stand behind every sale. As a matter of fact, news of your excellent service will quickly spread.
Make your brand come alive by letting your personality shine as part of your brand. People want to connect with other people on social media. Notwithstanding, many companies use a robotic tone on social networks and create a mechanical, sterile aura for their brand. You can do better! Allow yourself to use humor, emoticons and casual speech as you interact with others.
Above all, make you and your brand approachable. Do this not only by avoiding arrogance but also by making friendly gestures and sincerely communicating your feelings. Of course, you must always stay vigilant because you never want to say anything offensive or behave flippantly. In other words, stay professional, but personable at all times.
7. Lack of Grammar Skills
Repeatedly, companies that attempt to use social media hurt themselves through their writing. When you write with improper grammar and fail to spell words properly, you communicate a lack of professionalism. So spend the necessary time to proofread your content to make sure it reflects positively on your business.
Poor grammar can also cause social media failure when you produce video and graphic content. The greatest message in the world can quickly become the subject of ridicule if the messenger comes across as either ignorant or uneducated. Knowing this, make sure that everything you post to social media communicates competence, professionalism, and confidence.
In summary, you can use social media to grow your business, but doing so requires you to learn from the mistakes of others. By working hard and ensuring that you create both a personable and professional image for your firm, you can build profitable relationships and a stellar reputation for your brand.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Helen Eagleton, a freelance blogger from Boston, follows topics in the realm of education, technology, digital marketing, and business in general. When she’s not researching for her next article, she enjoys watching documentaries and exploring the nature. Reach her @eagleton_helen