Social media marketing can be a powerful tool for reaching existing and potential customers—as long as you do it right. Whether you’re a local store, a global brand or just starting your own online business, avoid these common social media mistakes to make your social media campaign as effective as possible.
Posting to too Many Social Media Platforms
As the saying goes, “quality over quantity.” Every social media platform has its own culture, demographic, and content type. And honestly, if you’re posting to Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and Facebook, you’re probably not tailoring the content to make the most of each platform’s capabilities.
The most effective strategy is to limit your social media efforts to two or three social media networks and exploit each one to the full. For example:
- On Facebook, share square images with an image or native video, link and call-to-action.
- On Instagram, use Instagram Stories and hashtags to reach more potential fans.
- On Twitter, make your tweets short and sweet and be sure to respond to mentions.
Posting Too Much or Not Enough
A solid social media strategy involves developing an editorial calendar for what you will post, when and where. To make social media marketing work, you need to post consistently with high-quality content your audience will love.
In general, you should post once or twice a day at the time your target audience is likely to be online. Include a mix of original content, shared content and curated user-generated content (UGC) to provide value and reach more potential fans.
Using Low-Quality Images
A picture speaks a thousand words, so make every image count! Whether you sell crocs or ballet barres, it’s worth hiring a professional photographer to take high-quality images that your fans will want to share.
When uploading your images to Facebook, most businesses go with a landscape orientation because that’s the shape the camera takes. However, if you use square images instead, you can take up 78% more space in users’ feeds and boost your views and engagement rates.
Sharing Video Links from YouTube
Remember the tip about posting native videos to Facebook? That’s right. Actually uploading a video can increase engagement several times over compared to sharing a video you published on YouTube. Take this from companies that have made this and other social media mistakes!
While it might seem like extra work, uploading each video separately to Facebook can lead to 109.67% more interaction and a 477.76% higher share rate, according to a study by Quintly. So those few extra minutes of your time could extend your reach for the same dollar amount!
Boosting Ads before They’ve Worked
Speaking of paying for ads, a common social media mistake is to promote content without analyzing its popularity first. Research shows that boosting well-performing social media posts helps these posts to perform even better.
To see which posts have the most engagement, check your Facebook Page Insights under “All Posts Published” and “Engagement Rate.” On Twitter, use Twitter Analytics. For Instagram and Pinterest, work out your engagement rate manually by dividing the total engagement figures by the reach or impressions of the post.
Failing to Reach Your Target Audience
Social media platforms like Facebook allow you to target specific audiences with your social media posts. If you’re a multi-location business or provide workshops in several countries or states, use this to your advantage and set geo-specific ads to display only to people in that location.
Likewise, if you know your target audience demographics (top tip: if you don’t know, find out), post to social media platforms that your target market uses, at the times they are online and focus on posting quality content that will add value to their lives.
Not Replying within One Hour
This might surprise some business owners, but social media users expect businesses to reply to their messages within one hour. That means that responding quickly should be a top priority for your social media marketing team.
Remember too that your social media presence should always be a two-way street. Respond to mentions, compliments and negative comments with courtesy and kindness and work quickly to resolve any issues expressed. Resolving issues quickly can do wonders for brand loyalty and PR!
Failing to Include a CTA
Finally, make sure that you create posts that convert. There’s no point spending a ton on Facebook ads if they don’t lead to engagements and sales! With every post that you publish to your social media channels, include a link back to your website and a call-to-action, such as:
- Comment below
- Like our page
- Follow us
- Share this post
- Enter the draw to win
- Shop [our product]
- Visit our website
- Contact us
According to Forbes, calls-to-action are more effective when:
- They are prominently visible
- They use the first person, i.e. “get my free ebook”
- They clearly tell the reader what you want them to do
- The results are measurable, i.e. you can measure the number of likes, shares, sign-ups, etc.
With so many distractions competing for your readers’ attention on social media, a CTA helps you to get straight to the point and doesn’t require too much time or effort on the part of the customer. To make your CTAs even more effective, turn them into a click-button. It doesn’t get much easier than that!
Make Social Media Work for You
Social media has the potential to boost your following and conversions significantly when you have a solid social media marketing strategy, optimize your posts for each platform, configure the settings to reach your target audience and include a prominent CTA.
If you use social media correctly and avoid the social media mistakes on this list, you should soon see measurable boosts in social media engagement, followers and ultimately an increase in sales! It may take a little trial and error to find out what works for you but the results will be well worth it