Social media platforms have become indispensable assets for businesses and marketers in today’s digital landscape. They provide a wealth of opportunities for brands to strengthen connections with their audiences, share pertinent content, and develop long-lasting relationships.
However, along with these advantages come potential challenges that can jeopardise the success of your social media initiatives. It’s easy to make mistakes that can affect your online presence and have unwanted results like losing followers, diminished engagement or even damage to your brand’s reputation. To navigate the ever-evolving world of social media and ensure your efforts yield positive results, it’s vital to be aware of the common mistakes and avoid them.
Here are eight common mistakes companies do when approaching their social media presence:
1. Inconsistent posting schedule
Maintaining an active presence on social media requires consistency. Some companies (especially the ones who don’t have enough resources to invest in a social media specialist), post whenever they have the time. A common trend I’ve noticed is when a company would post in a frenzy for a couple of days, sometimes more than one post a day, and then disappear for weeks or even months. Don’t do that. Irregular posting can lead to decreased engagement and a dwindling follower base. Take a bit of time and create a content calendar to plan and schedule posts in advance, distributing your ideas over a period of time, ensuring a stable posting frequency that keeps your audience engaged.
2. Not having a social media strategy
Without a strategy in place, your social media posts can be all over the place, creating confusion amongst your followers. Try not to post aimlessly. Allocate some time to creating a social media strategy. Come up with a list of specific objectives you want to achieve, then create a budget and an easy-to-follow plan of action.
3. Over-promotional content
While promoting products or services is essential, bombarding your audience with sales pitches can be off-putting. You might be tempted to ask your social media manager to mention your shop in every post, but that would be a mistake. When creating the content calendar, ensure your content is balanced by including informative, engaging, and entertaining posts to keep your followers interested. Your followers will appreciate when you’re sharing value without the immediate call to action, as they will appreciate the behind-the-scenes or the occasional meme.
4. Treating all social media platforms in the same way
Each social media platform has unique features, algorithms, and audience preferences. Sharing the same content across all platforms without tailoring it to suit the specific nuances can cause poor performance. Get to know each platform and customise your content to maximise its potential. You can share the same content on multiple platforms, but you need to do some tweaks here and there. Some types of content will perform well only on certain platforms: think about the pointing and dancing videos. You wouldn’t want to see those on LinkedIn, would you?
5. Not being on the right platform
Every brand should do a proper research before deciding in which platforms to invest their efforts. Sometimes, being on just one platform is enough, as long as it’s the best one for you. Choose wisely and informed!
6. Neglecting social media analytics
Regularly measuring your social media efforts is essential for refining your strategy. You must be able to see the impact of your actions on these platforms, to understand what is performing better and adjust your efforts based on it. Check your accounts' insights and base your future strategy on your observations.
7. Not using different forms of content
This is a common mistake small businesses do on social media. A good social media strategy demands multiple types of content: images, videos, stories, articles. This varied content will appeal to the diverse preferences of your target audience. Diversifying the forms of content shared on social media ensures your brand remains relevant, engaging, and capable of attracting a wider range of followers.
8. Too much automation
Automation can save time and resources, but excessive use or poor execution can backfire. Excessive use of automation could mean that you lose the human touch that makes your brand relatable for your audience. Try to provide genuine conversation and don’t forget to keep an eye on those bots to avoid embarrassing moments!
Social media is a powerful tool that has changed the way we communicate and connect with others. However, as with every powerful tool, it needs to be used wisely to get the desired outcomes. It is a work in progress and a continuous experimentation. It’s a journey on which you should bring the right people, to have the best advice and the best ideas.