Tag : social media mistakes

Avoid These 10 Social Media Media Marketing Poisons

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23Oct

 

We all know what poison is. In a nutshell, it’s a substance that causes harm to someone or something. Unfortunately, poison isn’t always marked with a giant skull and crossbones, nor is it an oozing green substance from fairy tales. Sometimes, such danger isn’t so obvious. This is especially true for social media marketing poison.

For social media, poison can be an “easy way out” or a seemingly innocent mistake. But marketers should beware! Check out the following social media dangers to avoid:

1. Inconsistency. The best way to make people forget about your brand and move onto a competitor is to be inconsistent with publishing posts. Huge gaps of time or sporadic scheduling will cause unfortunate consequences.

2. Plagiarism. Looking for some legal trouble? Then plagiarize away! There’s absolutely no reason to copy someone’s work without giving credit. Social media marketing offers us perfectly acceptable tools such as retweeting, sharing, repinning, etc. to curate content that fits your feel.

3. Unprofessionalism. Just like your personal social media profiles, there is etiquette to abide by. No cursing, no trash talking competition, no personal pictures, no using “I”. Don’t forget about the business you’re representing.

4. Veering off course. Remember your industry! While sharing interesting articles and engaging content is crucial to social media marketing success, don’t post things that are totally in left field. Keep things as relevant and centered around your field as possible.

5. No visuals. No pictures, videos, or GIFs? Boring! You will kill your social media profile by just looking unappealing. People are 80% more likely to check your content if you use imagery.

6. Ignoring customer outreach. Check your messages multiple times a day. Make sure your response time is less than 24 hours for everything that customers throw your way.

7. Living in a bubble. In it’s most primordial definition, social media is about community. Share others’ content, engage with followers, and start conversations by sharing polls, prompts, contents and more. Don’t isolate yourself from the community you’re trying to build. Talk it up!

8. Using personal opinion. Let’s be clear. Unless your company is by nature religious, political, or handles controversial subjects, it should NOT share an opinion. There will be someone out there that get’s offended.

9. Over-promoting. Even if you’re 100% using social media to boost sales, it can’t just be about promotional posts. No one will pay attention to a barrage of sales. Incorporate interesting articles, community-building exercises, quotes, etc.

10. Spam. People have a tendency to spot scams, spam, and junk a mile away. It’s in the writing and approach. Never spam. Even if your business is legit, you will look like a slimeball. We’ve all been pestered by scam artists one way or another, your business is better than that, right?

Your company needs social media, but your social media needs you to stay away from these deadly acts. What’s the panacea to this poison? Experienced, professional, and creative marketers who know their way around the internet.

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The Top Mistakes That Kill LinkedIn Accounts

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1Oct

Social media marketing isn’t simple. Wait, let me rephrase that. GOOD social media marketing isn’t simple. It’s easy to click “Sign Up” and send a tidal wave of garbage out to the cyber masses. But to be truly effective, you need to think and realize where exactly you’re posting. The phrase “When in Rome do as the Romans do” applies in a big way online. LinkedIn is perhaps the platform with the most etiquette to abide by. Are you acting appropriately on the social media site for professionals? If you’re doing one of the following, you definitely aren’t.

1. Thinking LinkedIn is Facebook. Sure, we all love memes, cat videos, and long-winded rants about personal opinions. But LinkedIn isn’t the place for that. Keep all the “personal-type content” on Facebook and Instagram.

2. Inappropriate or absent profile picture. Do yourself a favor and remember this mantra – “Selfies are not for LinkedIn!” I can’t tell you how many people use blurry, revealing, or simply unprofessional profile photos. You don’t need to hire a photographer to make a decent headshot. A little bit of effort will go a long way. And, with EVERY social media account, personal or professional, stay away from pics of you drinking, or in any situation, you wouldn’t want a superior to see.

3. More spamming than social. Sure, you can – and should – network on LinkedIn. But this isn’t a place for heavy promotions. Craft your writing to be organic and personable. Don’t use the default connection requests or congratulatory messages. Show you care!

4. Picking a fight. Speak the truth, but if you have a gripe with someone, perhaps not the whole truth. Negative comments are the bane of social media marketers’ existence, but in reality, it makes the writer look like a bit of a bully.

5. Hashtags. Now, hashtags are a BIG gray area for LinkedIn. At the time of this article’s posting, the long-banished hashtags have begun their return to the platform. However, they are only in the app. Soon enough, the Microsoft-owned social media platform will most definitely welcome hashtag functionality back to the desktop version. Then, go hashtag crazy. Until then, be wary of this tool.

LinkedIn is the world’s largest internet networking event. It’s not another Facebook or Twitter or Instagram, and it shouldn’t be treated like that. LinkedIn has become a huge opportunity for marketers and business owners to connect to right people. Be sure to do it right!

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Is Your Company Making These Social Media Mistakes?

13Aug

With all of the information out there about social media, it is tough to know what to pay attention to and what to take with a grain of salt.  Yet even with all of this information, we all still make our fair share of mistakes when executing our social media marketing campaigns.

As an owner of an agency that specializes in social media marketing, everyday I speak with people who are trying to make the most out of their Facebook and LinkedIn profile, or making their “tweets” count on Twitter.  The following are a few of the most common mistakes that I have seen companies make on social media and what we can do to combat them in the future.

Mistake #1: Lack of Research on the Platform

This is a very important one.  With all of the hype around social media (and also due to the fact that creating accounts is free and easy), many of us are eager to just jump in head first.  Keep in mind that social media is a branding and visibility platform and thus needs to carry the right messaging and voice.  Before you go full speed ahead, first see what you are getting yourself into.

I suggest creating a sparse profile and taking the time to look through each site.  Where is your target market?  What is your competition doing right (which can really help you come up with a strategy)?  What applications can be useful?  How are people communicating?  What tools to I have to communicate with my market?  While Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter can work to everyone’s advantage, if you only have time to manage one or two presences, it is best to be able to pinpoint the right ones and save yourself time and effort.

Top tip: a great way of seeing what sites suit your business is by asking your existing audience via polling.

Mistake #2: Lack of Focus

When you execute an advertising campaign, you know who you are targeting.  When you do a public relations campaign, you know what market you are trying to reach out to.  When you do an email marketing campaign….well, you get the point.  Social media is no different.

Social media allows us to target with laser focus, you just need to identify who you are trying to reach.  Once identified, the key is to connect with “meaningful people” not just random people to get “the numbers.”  Come on, why connect with 10,000 people who don’t care about you?  What good does that do?  Find connect and engage with people that matter.  Focus!

Mistake #3: Lack of Consistency

If you are going to do social media, make sure to do it on a consistent basis – not whenever you can grab a free second.  By consistent I mean daily, weekly, bi-weekly…on some sort of schedule.  Since you are growing your audience, you need to be in front of them gaining that visibility and credibility consistently.  My tip?  Create a schedule of when you will be executing social media and what messages you will be highlighting.  It takes a few minutes, but can save hours of weekly work.

No time to even make a plan?  Outsource!  It’s not a dirty word anymore.

Mistake #4: Using a 100% Push Marketing Approach

Push strategies are used often in traditional marketing.  While it is a perfect fit in many instances, it is not the foundation of an engaging social media strategy.  Push marketing literally “pushes” what you want from your audience directly on top of them, while “pull” marketing using social media is about starting a conversation, engaging, enchanting and much more.  My suggestion is to use a 90% pull and a 10% push marketing equation.  This is something that I have used and it works a treat.  This way you can grow your audience and create value before offering up a special discount.  If they believe you to be credible through your pull approach, when you incorporate the push elements you will have higher levels of success.

Mistake #5: Wrong Goals

Truly look at what you are trying to achieve, and “more sales” is not enough.  Social media has many outcomes, so it is smart to have a broader scope.  Think in terms of hits to your website, newsletter signups, ebook/book sales/downloads….this is the way to go!

Mistake #6: Lack of Planning

Again, I am going back to the importance of a  plan:  without a plan, you plan to fail.  Although we know this cliche all too well, there is definitely truth to it.  Why?  Because a strategic plan saves you time and money – two things that we all can use, right?

Sit down and figure out your marketing strategy and then layer your social media strategy on-top.  Social media can support and enhance everything you do, you just have to keep the two connected.  Without the connection, you are wasting the power of cross marketing and branding.  Flying blindly in a new marketing medium could not only be risky for your reputation, but also cause you more trouble than you can handle.

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I hope that these mistakes are ones that you have not made and if you have, you will no longer make.  It is important for us to all to take a close look at our plans and strategies in order to see how strong and effective they can be.  Without strategy or planning, a social media marketing campaign takes a lot more time and a lot more effort to execute.

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“Hey, Your Links Aren’t Working!” – How to Avoid This and Other Social Media Pitfalls

8Jul

There is nothing worse than being called out by your target audience for a broken link, mis-spelling or grammatical mistake on one of your social media updates or profiles.  The obvious way to avoid this would be to proof-read and double check all of the links and content before you post.

But what happens when some of the changes are out of your control?

This is commonplace in the ever changing world of social media marketing.  Sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are constantly evolving and enhancing their onsite offerings.  To stay competitive, each of these sites is in a constant state of change and improvement.  While this is good news to users, if you are a passive social media marketer (like many businesses out there), you can put yourself at risk of looking out of date and unprofessional.

In order to keep your branding and content looking top-notch, at LEAST once a month, run the following check on all of your social media profiles.  Depending on your content it could take a little while, but it is very much worth it.  Just think of how many business pages on Facebook that you have seen without a cover image.  This is because these companies STILL don’t know that Facebook has changed into the “Timeline” layout.  Even more embarrassing?  Some of these companies are multi-million dollar juggernauts!

Here are my top suggestions for places to check when auditing your social media accounts each month/week:

1.  Layout:  Each of these sites has gone through major layout overhauls during the past year.  So if you are reading this, have profiles on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, AND haven’t logged in during the past year…log in immediately!  Look at how your public profile appears to your target market.  Remember, having a profile is more than just creating it and waiting for people to come.  You need to keep it current.  If you are not updating it, that doesn’t mean that people are not going to find your inactive page when searching.  Make sure that your branding is on point, as well as your pictures, video and other branded elements.  Ensure the logo and images you are using are aligned with what your company is currently utilizing for promotion.

2.  Links:  This is a big one as well.  Many sites have been switching up how they use links, and this can result in links being broken.  So painstakingly go through each of the hyperlinks in your profile, click on them, and ensure they are going to the correct corresponding location.  If not, update, remove or replace.  Also, perhaps you have added a landing page or another online profile since your last update.  Add these while you are checking through your profiles.

3.  Content Display:  This is another important one.  So many people are trying their hand at using third party posting tools, but never check to see how these tools actually posted to their profile(s).  Sometimes these tools have an issue with site permissions and NEVER post your content.  We have seen prospective clients complain about not getting any traction on social media, when in the past 30 days nothing they sent out via their Hootsuite account was posted.  So go through your profiles to see if the content was posted, if the links work, if the right picture or video was shown and if the description was accurate.  Then you can refine your postings going forward.

4.  Spelling/Grammar:  This is a no-brainer, but you should do a quick run-through of your description.  While you may have already done this before, writing your description once and never changing it doesn’t make sense.  What if you win awards, get press coverage, add products, add services, change your operating basis, etc?  All of these need to be updated when you do your audits.  If you make sure to look at these at least once a month, you can constantly tweak them so that they are 100% current and reflective of where your company currently is. Also, if you have a few people posting comments and replies, make sure that they have mastered that art of spelling and grammar.

5. Comments/Likes/Shares:  Many busy marketers use email updates to let them know that someone interacted with their social media profiles.  The only problem?  These emails don’t always cover everything.  Go into your profile and look through your updates, discussions and tweets to see if you have missed any interaction points.  After all, this is why you are doing social media marketing in the first place!  These interaction points are gold.

6.  Inbox:  One of the forgotten aspects of Facebook and LinkedIn is checking your inbox (and with Twitter, your Direct Messages or DMs).  This is another case of waiting for a message that never comes.  Sometimes setting the message settings on your social media accounts (like above) can be tricky.  So double check your inboxes (and DM inbox) to make sure that you haven’t missed any communications. If you have, consult the email settings on the corresponding social media site to ensure you are able to get all of the communications you want to follow.  I’ve seen people miss opportunities due to the lack of focus on keeping current with their inboxes.

These 6 ports of call are helpful in not only keeping you current and your branding on-point, but also in helping you see where you need to spend a bit more time going forward.  One glaring point is where the email updates are concerned, and this is something that you need to keep track of.

This process is much simpler when you have a consistent social media marketing schedule, and more difficult if you don’t even have time to login to Facebook even twice a week.  If you want to be effective on social media and do not have the time, consider outsourcing this work to a professional firm or agency that specializes in social media marketing for businesses.  Your reputation is too important to risk, and if you take your eye off of the ball – the only thing to get tarnished is your valuable professional reputation.

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