Most of us are well aware of how to utilise social media to find friends, entertain ourselves, seek information etc. Businesses are also becoming better equipped at utilising all that social media has to offer. Whether it be merely a marketing tool, or something used to garner feedback, social media and business have a solid rooting in overall marketing strategies. Whilst business owners are encouraged to utilise social media sites to their advantage, these sites can be dangerous if they are not utilised correctly.
As such, social media marketing has become one of the top priorities for many companies on both ends of the spectrum, whether they be large corporations or small start-ups. Social media sites are so widely engrained into society – and in how the modern world advertises all things from the latest products to morning walks – that it is imperative all companies have a solid understanding of how best to utilise these services if they want to maximise their chances for success.
Social media marketing can very easily be done wrong. The saturated nature of the market alone is enough to drown out any newcomer trying to make a name for themselves. In the same vein however, its accessibility, reach and casual and communicative nature mean it is not entirely unconquerable. If you are aware of what could go wrong you are much less likely to succumb to the fates of those who didn’t know any better.
Keep reading to find out the most common social media marketing pitfalls, so you can maximise your company’s chances at success:
- Not having a strategy
Although social media boasts a much more laid-back, casual nature as a marketing platform than more traditional forms of media, it still needs to be met with decent planning and strategy. As with any marketing initiatives performed by a business, there must be a plan, and there must be a goal. Too many companies go all-in on social media without even entertaining the idea of creating a strategy to ensure only the best possible outcome is achieved, and no time unnecessarily wasted.
By not having a strategy, you can almost guarantee you will be doing more work with poorer results. Simply doing what is required to guarantee social media success is not enough, there must be a main goal or idea serving as the means of direction for each post and update. Strategic marketing should be a no-brainer when it comes to maximizing your businesses chance for success, and as such, social media marketing should be no different.
Don’t get pulled in by the casual nature social media projects, it is a tool that should be treated professionally and with thought if you want to ensure you are utilizing it to its full potential.
- Not being consistent
Perhaps one of the worst things a business can do when setting up any form of social media channel is to post sporadically, or not all. Part of this issue can be rectified again by creating strategy around your company’s social media marketing, and delegating an individual or team to oversee what is being posted.
Staying active and consistent is key in building a following, increasing brand recognition and awareness, as well as increasing the likelihood of having active customer interaction. Customers are far more likely to seek out and stay connected to companies they see are active, responsive and putting in effort to remain up-to-date.
Consistency really is key when it comes to social media marketing strategy, and is one of the most fool-proof ways to assure some level of success when marketing your business online.
- Not keeping tracks of analytics and goals
Most companies fail to set up strategy for social media marketing in the first place, and often times those that do, still fail to follow through. Why set goals if you aren’t ensuring you are keeping track of the results? Social media should be treated no differently than any other marketing activity your business engages in. Keeping an eye on followers and likes won’t cut it either.
Almost every social media site out there has evolved to the point where they can be a business best friend when looking to track analytics, garner information about client base, interaction, product popularity etc. There is no excuse to not be utilizing these features to your company’s advantage.
Sites such as Google, YouTube, LinkedIn and even Pinterest boast robust analytic synopses of your profiles engagement and performance, as well as several third party social media tracking tools that enable you to tangibly measure the success of your businesses social media marketing strategy, aside from simply counting the number of followers.
Analytics can enable you to truly understand the value of your social media efforts, by giving you access and keeping track of tangible data that can be translated in to strategy updates or insights into strengths in your company’s current marketing strategies.
- Overdoing it
Much in the same way that posting inconsistently can be the kiss of death for a business’s social media marketing strategy, so can posting excessively.
No audience, no matter their demographic or interests, wants to be repeatedly bombarded with content throughout the entirety of their day. Short and sweet, simple and entertaining, quick and to the point – are all mottos that should embody the essence of each carefully thought out post.
Make use of scheduling features on sites, so if you do have multiple posts, at least you are able to spread them lightly throughout the course of a few days to a week, as opposed to all at once.
- Expecting success overnight
Like many things in life, success is a journey, and any business owner would be familiar with this sentiment. Social media marketing may make it appear as though it is sickeningly easy to have you company blow up overnight due to some form of viral post, the reality is that these things are quite rare.
If you are doing it right, you can expect to succeed, however the pace at which you do so cannot be predicted. Building strong customer relationships takes time, and translating those relationships online is no different.
Keep consistent, stay focused and be realistic about what you can expect from your social media marketing efforts, and you’ll be well equipped to avoid the most common social media marketing pitfalls.