For most of us, social media serves many roles, but most of them are personal and rarely strategic. Mastering our social accounts in everyday use – for entertainment, maintaining friendships, displaying this morning’s breakfast bowl – comes more or less intuitively. It’s especially tempting for many, including millennials or Gen Zers, to think that their familiarity with every button and widget on Instragram gives them an edge in the world of social media marketing. You helped your mother figure out how to change her Facebook profile; you surely have something to offer the boomers signing your paycheck right?
Well, it’s not that simple. A business has specific consumer or stakeholder segments to reach as online audiences, its own voice that needs to be consistent, and its own strategic objectives that drive marketing activity.
Above all, social media marketing, whether it is performed by a consultant, an in-house marketing manager, or an independent influencer, must be done with intentionality. Don’t put your content curation on autopilot.
Here are the top 10 mistakes to avoid in social media marketing:
- Not having a clear strategy: Before diving into social media marketing, it’s important to have a well-defined strategy in place. This includes identifying your target audience, setting specific goals, and determining which platforms will be most effective for reaching your audience.
- Ignoring analytics: Social media platforms offer a wealth of data on the performance of your posts and campaigns. Ignoring this data can lead to wasted efforts and missed opportunities for improvement.
- Failing to be consistent: Consistency is key in social media marketing. This means regularly posting content, engaging with your audience, and maintaining a consistent brand voice across all platforms.
- Not taking advantage of paid advertising: While organic reach on social media is becoming increasingly difficult to achieve, paid advertising can help you reach a wider audience and drive more conversions.
- Not engaging with your audience: Social media is a two-way conversation. Failing to engage with your audience, whether it be through comments, direct messages, or other forms of communication, can lead to a lack of trust and loyalty.
- Posting irrelevant content: Your social media audience has chosen to follow you because they are interested in your brand and the content you provide. Posting irrelevant content can lead to disengagement and ultimately, a decrease in followers.
- Focusing too much on self-promotion: While promoting your products or services is important, it should not be the sole focus of your social media efforts. A balance of promotional and valuable, non-promotional content is key.
- Not staying current: Social media is constantly evolving, with new features, algorithms, and best practices emerging regularly. Failing to stay current on these changes can lead to missed opportunities and a lack of effectiveness in your marketing efforts.
- Not measuring success: Without setting and measuring specific goals, it can be difficult to determine the success of your social media marketing efforts. It’s important to track key metrics such as engagement, reach, and conversions to see what is working and what isn’t.
- Ignoring negative feedback: Negative feedback is an inevitable part of social media marketing. Ignoring it or responding in an unprofessional manner can lead to further damage to your brand’s reputation. Instead, respond in a timely and professional manner, and take any constructive criticism as an opportunity for growth and improvement.
By avoiding these common mistakes, you can set yourself up for success and see real results from your social media marketing efforts. Remember, social media marketing is a process that takes time and effort, but with a clear strategy and a consistent approach, you can achieve your goals and grow your business.