Every business needs access to social media. Social media marketing is one of the best ways to reach new audiences. Facebook and Twitter in particular have millions of users who are just waiting to hear about what you have to offer. But you can’t just go to social media and expect a sudden surge of new visitors. Once you do get a sizable audience, you’ll have to find ways to keep their attention.
Failing to take advantage of social media can damage your brand and reputation. Here are seven social media mistakes that can be harmful for your brand.
Focusing on the wrong platform
A Facebook page and a Twitter profile are a must for any type of business. Among all social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter cater to the most of users and widest demographics. Tweets and status updates are powerful marketing tools regardless of what type of business you’re running.
On the other hand, such platforms as Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn have fewer users but are more accommodating to specific niches. If you produce visual-centric content like artwork, handcrafted clothes, or food recipes, you may want to focus your attention on Pinterest and Instagram. If you produce written content or digital goods, then you can stay on Facebook and Twitter. Putting effort into the wrong platform is a waste of time and energy, because there’s a good chance your target audience isn’t even on that platform in the first place.
Using the wrong hashtags and promoting insensitively
Be tactful when promoting your business. It’s important to join trends when tweeting about your latest product or promo, but don’t just join trends haphazardly; for example, when using popular hashtags on Twitter, make sure that hashtag is related to your business. Avoid involving your business in national issues, tragedies, and controversies. Doing so can leave a bad taste in your followers’ mouths.
Using your business Twitter for personal use
Feel free to use your personal Twitter account to promote your business’ Twitter account. Retweet all of your business tweets if you want to. However, don’t do the opposite. Avoid tweeting a birthday greeting to your nephew, sharing opinions on politics, and holding non-business-related conversations on your business’ Twitter profile. Doing this makes you look unprofessional. Don’t post things that have little to no connection with your content, product, or brand. Don’t breach your followers’ trust by posting content they don’t care about.
Buying likes or follows
You should never, under any circumstance, buy fake fans. Bolstering your numbers on Facebook and Twitter does nothing for you in the long run. The likes and followers you purchase will never interact with your content. They will never translate to sales and genuine impressions. Worse still, purchased followers will eventually disappear after some time. The worst case scenario is Facebook or Twitter finding out about what you did. Buying fans can be considered as an indirect form of spam, and can lead to your account being suspended or banned.
Responding unprofessionally to feedback
Remember to share or retweet positive things that people say about your business. On the other hand, address complaints privately and professionally. If someone says something negative, offer to talk to them through official channels, or at least through private messages. The last thing you want to do is to lash out at your fans or respond sarcastically.
Failing to utilize images
If you can, include images into your posts. Images can help your tweets and status updates stand out. You don’t have to use images all the time, but do so if you think they can complement your post. Don’t rely only on stock photos; it you can, try using unique images such as infographics instead.
Doing nothing but promote your products
Don’t just use social media to promote your products. Remember that social media allows you to build relationships with your followers. You won’t be building any relationships if all you do is talk about your product. Engage your users. Communicate with them by creating or linking relevant content. Talk to them once in a while.
Social media is not merely an online newsletter. Social media is a powerful marketing tool. Avoiding these mistakes will not only help you grow your audience, but will also help you build lasting relationships with your fans.