Big brand, small business, entrepreneur, solopreneur – it doesn’t matter which you are. If you’re making one (or more) of these five social media blunders, you’re in trouble.
The good news? You’ve come to the right place!
In this post, you’ll learn:
Why you need an omni-channel strategy
How to build relationships instead of buying followers
Why broadcasting only will kill your social strategy
How to post more than just promotional content
How to stay focused and maintain for the long haul
Rebekah Radice is one of the top minds in social media marketing. She was gracious enough to share five of the biggest social media blunders and how you can avoid them. When Rebekah talks, we listen…and so should you.
So let’s get to the blunders, and what to do instead…
Social Media Blunder 1: Not Creating an Omni-Channel Strategy
First, recognize that multi-channel and omni-channel strategies are not the same. Most businesses market on multiple channels. For example, their website, blog, social media, paid advertising, etc. That’s a multi-channel strategy.
An omni-channel strategy, however, takes a multi-channel strategy to the next level.
John Bowden, Senior VP of Customer Care at Time Warner Cable said it best when he described omni-channel marketing as “viewing the experience through the eyes of your customer, orchestrating the customer experience across all channels so that it is seamless, integrated and consistent.”
With the explosion of technology and sources of information, the buyer’s journey is drastically different than it was even 10 or 15 years ago. Customers are on multiple channels and their purchasing decision is influenced by all their experiences with your brand.
By providing a consistent experience across all channels, you allow customers to engage with you through their preferred method. In other words, you shouldn’t expect your audience to come to you. Put your customers’ needs first and position yourself where they hang out.
A successful omni-channel strategy tailors posts to specific platforms while maintaining a consistent brand message at all times.
Social Media Blunder 2: Buying Followers Instead of Building Relationships
Whether it’s an email list, Twitter followers, Facebook fans or anything else, attempting to purchase connections is almost always a waste of time and money.
Buying these “connections” produces little more than a vanity metric for your business. In fact, it does more harm than good on some social media platforms.Buying followers on #SocialMedia does more harm than good!Click To Tweet
Take Facebook for example. Their algorithm looks at engagement levels and measures them against the size of your following to determine if a post has value. It makes sense. After all, Facebook is a business and content is their product. Like every business, they want to provide a quality experience for their users.
If you’ve bought Facebook fans for your business page, they’ll never engage with your content. As a result, the algorithm gets strong signals this is not content people like and won’t display it to most of your fans. In truth, you can actually kill your Facebook page by buying fans.
Instead, focus on building natural relationships through social media. Only connect with people interested in what you have to offer. Those are the people who will engage and, ultimately, turn into leads and sales for your business.
If you’re not sure who those people are, here’s a helpful exercise to figure it out. You need to find your “WIN” – your Who, Issues, and Needs.
Ask yourself these three questions:
WHO are you connecting with on social media?
What ISSUES or problems do you solve?
What are their specific NEEDS when they come to you?
Write out three answers to each of these questions. Make those answers the driving force behind your social media content and the positioning of your marketing message.
Once you have this mindset, you’re in a great position to start making relationships on social media. Remember, people buy from people (and brands) they know, like and trust.
So how do you build solid relationships on social media? We’ll get to that in the next section, but it’s not social media blunder number three…
Social Media Blunder 3: Posting and Running
One of the biggest social media blunders many brands make is having a post and run, broadcast-only approach to social.
Relationships are a two-way street. If you’re only talking on social media, can you expect to build meaningful connections? (Hint: you cannot.)
It’s called social media for a reason. To see results, become part of the conversation.Don't just broadcast - join the conversation! Click To Tweet
Be thoughtful, helpful and encouraging to your audience. This allows you to infuse humanity into the sales process and tie interest to action.
Take, for example, one of your recent promotional posts on social media. Now look at it from a different angle. How you could craft it in a way that gets your message across and also starts a conversation?
Also, don’t be afraid to jump into conversations…when appropriate. If you can add to the conversation and provide value, people will appreciate it. Adding your thoughts establishes your expertise and builds trust.
Try this: set a reminder to go into your social media notifications and reply to three people at the beginning and the end of each day. If you do this for one week and don’t make at least one meaningful connection, I’ll eat my hat.
A great example of this is Sam Hurley – a master of making connections through social media. Check out his Twitter feed and you’ll see countless tweets talking to people, thanking them, building relationships. Sam has built an amazing personal brand over the past couple of years.
Social Media Blunder 4: Only Posting Promotional Content
If you’re noticing a theme around building relationships and providing value with social media, well done. But do you think you can do those two things if every one of your social media posts is a commercial for your brand? Sorry, no, doesn’t work that way.
You need a healthy mix of content. You also need a plan to share that content strategically. How that looks will be different for everyone. But for a simple example, let’s say for every purely promotional post, you post four non-promotional pieces of content. That’s an easy plan to implement and stick with.
But what other kind of content should you share on social media? Let’s take a look at Rebekah’s Twitter feed for some ideas.
Here, she is promoting her new social media marketing training course (as she should).
But that’s certainly not all we’ll find in her feed.
She also posts motivational tweets that will resonate with her audience:
Nothing promotional about that. But people love these kinds of tweets and they serve her personal brand well.
Educational posts are also a big part of her content mix.
In the brave new world of digital marketing, your content is the foundation of your online presence. By sharing links to content people learn from, you establish expertise and earn trust.
I’m sure you’ve heard the term “content marketing” before. Well, this is it in action. Great content drives traffic and attracts attention to your product or service. It builds relationships, raises awareness and encourages interaction.
Creating and sharing amazing content is one of the best things you can do to grow your brand. The best part? It costs next to nothing to implement an effective content marketing strategy.
Social Media Blunder 5: No Long-Term Commitment
Finally, a huge mistake brands make on social media is giving up too quickly. Like anything worthwhile, social media marketing takes time to build traction.
The best way to make sure you stick with it is to have a defined plan you can manage. It doesn’t have to be super complicated. You just need to make sure to cover the basics and keep at it.
As you grow, you’ll learn what’s working and what’s not. And as you see results, you’ll become more excited to do more and try new things.
But, again, get started with a basic plan and do not stray.
One of the most common mistakes with social media marketing is what Rebekah refers to as “shiny object syndrome.” Fall victim to it and you’ll end up like this…
It’s easy to get caught up in the latest and greatest new social media tool or strategy. But it can also be the kiss of death for your social media marketing strategy.
Every day, stay focused on the strategy and process you’ve laid out in advance. If there’s a new tool or strategy that will make that easier, go for it!
But don’t get caught in the trap of trying new things simply because they’re new or others are raving about them. Stick to the plan. Stick to the plan! STICK TO THE PLAN!
Okay, I think you get the picture.
Make a plan that is meaty enough to move the dial in your business but simple enough to maintain.
One of the best ways to ensure success is to make a daily checklist that creates a trackable and measurable system you can repeat every day.
So you have it, five huge social media blunders you should never make again.
As you can see, Rebekah knows her stuff (and then some) when it come to social media marketing. If you’re making any of these five mistakes, this is your opportunity to take her advice and fix it.
So over to you…were you making any of these mistakes? Inspired by Rebekah’s advice? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below!