Deadly Sins of Social Media
When it comes to social media, temptation is everywhere for businesses – the temptation to get ahead of the competition quicker, to be popular, to have posts go viral, to have many followers and fans, likes and check-ins. But pursuing these goals in the wrong way can be disastrous and could even damage your brand.
So, do you know which habits are the five deadly sins of social media and how to avoid them?
Every business out there wants power, fame and money. So, when it comes to social media, many businesses only see it as a direct marketing tool and so they keep posting adverts about their products and little else.
Few businesses understand that social media is not about advertising their products commercially but about connecting with their customers by sharing valuable content their followers are actually interested in.
Social media is a conversational tool and the conversation should never be about the business or the products or the services, but about them – the customers. What are your customers’ problems and how can you help them fix them? What can they learn from you? How can you get involved to help them or their business grow?
Build goodwill and sales will follow, don’t force your products down people’s throats.
Absolutely every business has been tempted to artificially boost their fan or follower base by paying for lists of hundreds and thousands of fans and followers. It’s the worst thing you can do as a business as these paid followers are not hand-picked but computer generated, which means they’re not really interested in your brand. They will not get involved, start a conversation or interact with your other fans.
Fake followers and fans are easy to detect and could reflect badly on your brand if you get caught.
Equally, a high number of fans or followers does not guaranteed business success. In fact, you’ve probably seen many Facebook Fan pages with thousands of fans but little to no interaction. Building a community with quality fans and followers and making meaning connections should always be a priority on social media.
You might be tempted to have your business listed on every social network out there, just because you see other businesses doing it. There is such a thing as over-reaching and the most common result of this is one or several abandoned profiles.
So, do you homework to see where your audience hangs out online and choose which social networks to join based on that. You don’t need to be everywhere, only where your customers are. In addition, before joining several social networks, take a few minutes to think and determine if you have the time and resources to develop those profiles to their full potential.
If you’ve identified your audience’s main passion or hobby, that’s fantastic. However, don’t beat it to death by constantly pushing the same type of content. Get creative. There are so many great resources online that can inspire you and influence you when it comes to the content you create and share with your fan base. Don’t be afraid of trying something different.
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Vine, LinkedIn, Pinterest – they all have their unique strengths and weaknesses. If you have accounts on several social networks, make sure you create a harmonised social strategy where you are consistent with the type of content you share but you use each platform uniquely, taking advantage of each platform’s strong points. Avoid posting the same thing on every platform, every day. Sure, it takes work but nothing worth having ever comes easily, does it?
If you focus more on your audience’s wants and needs, and on the conversation rather than the end-results, you’ll you be able to build a strong relationship with your fans and followers.
Any other deadly sins you’d add to this list?