Common Social Media Mistakes for Businesses

Social Media Mistakes

Social media as a main stream marketing strategy has been in practice for a few years now. Whether a company is new at this concept or they have been doing it “like a pro,” there are still social media mistakes that continue to pop up by users. These mistakes can cost a business greatly. Let’s look at 10 of the most common mistakes out there.

  • Posting too many times about your services/products within a small time window will turn your followers off. Try spreading your posts out (Buffer is a great tool for this) and sticking to something similar to the 80/20 rule. That is 80% about your industry and 20% about your business offerings.
  • “Advertising” your business on another business’ Facebook page is rude and tacky. You’re not actually getting read by their followers, but you are going to help progress some negative word-of-mouth marketing by those companies you do that to. Remember it’s a person running that other Facebook account.
  • Creating automatic posts without staying in touch with the temperature of your audience. If you’ve created a status update about what a fun, loving community/followers you have and something in the news comes up about a child abduction, you’re going to look very impersonal and out of touch with reality.
  • Talking but not listening will kill any progress you might make on your social media platforms. You’re online and now your followers want to be socialable. Don’t leave them hanging. Answer questions…respond to comments…just be present!
  • When connecting with others on LinkedIn don’t use the default message. Make it personal. Send a message about where you might have met them, heard them talk, or others who you both might know.
  • Do not spam others through private messages. If you use DM’s on Twitter to shout your pitch, you’ll get unfollowed. If you send a private message to share a spammy ad on Facebook, it’ll get deleted with no response. Call the business and find out who you need to talk to and talk with that person. Leave your social media sites to promote others (first) then yourself properly.
  • Just because there are hundreds of social media platforms available, doesn’t mean your business needs to have an active account on all of them. Remember you’re trying to reach a particular type of fan. You need to ask, “Where are they and how can we use that platform to our best ability?” Then knock it out of the park!
  • Online newsletters should never be sent to anyone that has not opted into your subscriber list. Yes, that means just because you met someone and exchanged business cards, does not mean they qualify as a subscriber.
  • Your online voice can be read many different ways. What you may think is tongue-in-cheek humor can be completely rude and a turn off to half your audience. Become familiar on when to sound professional and when to be more casual with your posts.
  • Be careful with double-posting. Don’t always have the same posts on Twitter that you would have on your LinkedIn or Facebook account. They have different “voices” and you need to give variety.

Trends will always change, but etiquette is a constant. Be sure that you are thinking of what is best for your (potential) customers, not what is best for your sales figures.


The Art of Retweeting

Retweeting on TwitterI have seen countless retweets (where you resend someone else’s tweet) that left me puzzled. Why did they retweet it? Did they think it was funny? Horrible? Do they agree? Disagree?

Since Twitter is meant to be a social communication venue, I figured I would throw out the steps for a good retweet:

1. Shorthand. Most savvy Tweeters know to use about 120 characters instead of the maximum 140. This way it makes it easier for others to retweet them. However, if you want to retweet a lengthy tweet, by all means shorten it.  You have to think like a teenager in texting mode.

(If you have a little problem with this, NetLingo helps with all the texting lingo needed.
Although I must ask…WHO COMES UP WITH THIS STUFF?! Who decided that 143 means ‘I love you’?)

But don’t go crazy. Normal people need to understand what you’re saying.

2. Your 2 cents. There is obviously a reason why you’re retweeting…so state it.

Great thoughts…I highly rec to read

Great picture! What equip was used?

+1 (<- really short response but very cool)

3. Use sparingly. Retweets are a great way of tweeting out something fast…and totally appropriate. However, if someone checks out your Twitter stream and it’s filled with nothing by RTs, it appears you don’t have a mind of your own. Shake it up! If you read a post that you dig, Tweet about it in first person vs. a retweet from someone else or send a tweet to the author commenting + a link to the post.

I hope this helps. I think so many people get caught up in the dos and don’ts they forget the basics: it’s communicating with people.

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