Small businesses, large enterprises, and every company in between. If you’re running a business in this day and age, it’s no longer optional to have an online presence. While having a professional-quality, mobile-friendly website is great, the bar has been set higher by your audience. They now expect you to be available through as many channels as possible for their ease of communication and convenience. This includes your website, review forums (like Yelp), email, phone, and, yes, social media. There are some business owners who opt to eschew social media because of its perceived difficulty in maintaining it. There are others who halfheartedly set up profiles, and then never touch them again. Neither of which is a smart business decision since it reflects a lack of commitment to your audience’s needs. So, in the coming year, rather than try to avoid using social media, focus on the practical ways to ease into it. Let’s start by honing in on the social media marketing mistakes to avoid in 2017.
The 7 Social Media Marketing Mistakes to AvoidWith shrinking budgets and less time to dedicate to anything but managing your business, it can be difficult summoning the effort (and courage) to utilize social media. Don’t be fooled though. Social media plays an important role in marketing. In fact, nine out of ten marketers claim that social media has helped them generate more attention for their company. So if you want to do right by your audience (and your business), start the new year off right by avoiding these social media marketing mistakes:
Mistake #1: Not Joining Social MediaFacebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. Instagram. YouTube. Google+. You get the point. There’s a lot of social media out there. Despite having all those options, you shouldn’t be wasting your time or energy on building a presence on each one. This is part of the reason why business owners become overwhelmed by the prospect of joining social. You only need to be on the ones that make the most sense for your business (like image-friendly Facebook for an online store).
Mistake #2: Not Putting Effort into Social MediaIn Time Warner Cable’s Small Business Technology Impact Study, respondents showed a growing interest in companies that maintained an active presence on social media. Half of those aged 18 to 34, 42% of those aged 35 to 54, and 24% of those over 55 said that they were more likely to be customers of a company that regularly posted to Facebook than those that did not.
Mistake #3: Not Using a Management ToolThere are very affordable (as well as free) social media management tools that help businesses do social better. They keep you organized, encourage you to post more, and some will even tell you the optimal date and time to share your next post on each platform. These tools also give you better (and more convenient) analytics than the individual platforms will.
Mistake #4: Talking Too MuchThere is such a thing as oversharing and it’s very easy to do on social media when you’ve got access to it 24/7. But since you’re on social media for the purposes of marketing your business, you’ve got to remember to keep your game face on, too. Here are three basic rules you should live by:
- Don’t talk too much on any of these platforms, except Twitter. (There are about 500 million tweets every day, so you can never go wrong with being talkative there.)
- Don’t talk about controversial or otherwise divisive topics.
- Don’t talk about too many different subjects since it’ll have people (and the search engines) wondering what your real focus is.