So everyone’s been telling you how important it is for your company to be investing in social media and you signed up—Facebook, Twitter, Google+, blogging, you name it! But are you really using your social media to its full extent? Do you have a defined, clearly articulated social media marketing strategy in place that you are implementing and tracking?
If your social media marketing efforts haven’t been booming the way they should be, that’s okay—we’re here to help! We’ve put together the top 10 things companies do wrong with their social media and how to fix them.
1. You’re not telling everyone (and we mean everyone).
Social media websites are about building an engaged community around your business. This can’t happen if no one knows your company exists. You need to tell everyone that your business is engaged and active in social media. Put your Facebook page URL and Twitter handle on your business cards, in your email signature, in the company newsletter, tell your clients, and your daughter’s friend’s cousin—everyone you meet should know your company is active with social media. No matter how excellent your social media strategies are, no one is going to know if they don’t know you’re even out there! Take every opportunity you have to let people know you’re on social media and what you’ll be providing—tips, coupons, special events, company news, pictures of cats, etc.
You can also use other peoples’ social media profiles as ways to let people know you’re out there—leave comments on Facebook posts and tweet at prominent members in your industry or potential clients. This also does the double duty of letting people connect with your company on a personal level.
2. You’re not linking your social media to your website.
If you don’t have buttons on your website leading to your social media profiles, you need to stop reading this right now and fix that ASAP! I’m not kidding! Go do it right now… I’ll wait.
Okay, why is that so important? Your website is full of useful information—your blog, contact information, location, services, etc.—why not link those same things straight to your social media! Let people know your website isn’t the only way they can stay updated with your company’s day-to-day news, coupons, and customer service. Your website is the hub of information about you and if it’s not telling people you’re on social media, it’s a big mistake.
So having link from your website to your company’s social media profiles is key, but you also have to think (strategically) about where you’re placing these links. For example, if you own a plumbing company, is it really a good idea to encourage people with an emergency – people that are in “call / hire” mode – to visit your company’s Facebook page? Ask yourself – which site is better for converting visitors into leads/sales, your website or your Facebook (Twitter, etc.) page? The vast majority of companies are going to have higher visit-to-lead conversion rates on their main website, so don’t be strategic with where you place your social media links and icons.
You’ve got to think of your main website almost as if it were a retail store. You want people to find it, explore it, and convert. If your main website is like a retail store, Facebook is more like a flea market. At a flea market, there are a lot of other vendors competing for the attention of your prospect. Facebook is exactly the same. Imagine it… Stacy needs a plumber. Stacy finds your website. Stacy sees your Facebook link and clicks on it. Stacy is not on Facebook for more than 2 minutes when a friend “chats” her to ask if she’s seen Melanie’s new baby. Awwww so cute. Wait… why was Stacy online again?
Everyone online has attention deficit disorder. Act accordingly.
3. You’re not integrating your social media with your other communications.
I think we emphasized how important it is to let everybody know your company is present and engaged on the various popular social media sites—and one of the easiest ways to do this is by integrating your social media with all your other communications. If you do email newsletters, direct mail, or anything else, connect them back to your social media marketing strategy! Adding links to your social media can provide a valuable connection to your company that the majority of consumers will be familiar with.
4. You’re not using the different social media channels correctly.
A lot of business owners and marketers make the mistake of treating social media like other forms of advertising. Much like snowflakes, every social media channel is unique—and they should be treated as such! Each one comes with its own set of rules, standards, etiquette, and protocol, and it’s always vital to your social media success to abide by all of them. Depending on the site, social media should be thought of as PR, Google, and a help desk—all rolled into one!
Take the differences between Facebook and Twitter, for instance. On Facebook, you can make longer posts and complete photo galleries, but your followers will expect a moderate number of posts per day in comparison with Twitter. There you have to be more succinct, but you can fire off multiple posts a day—in fact, many users expect it.
5. You’re not posting consistently.
You have to have a Goldilocks mentality when it comes to your social media marketing strategies—are you posting too much, too little, or just right? It’s important that you strike up the perfect balance. If you don’t post often enough, your followers will become bored and disinterested in your company. But if you post too often, you run the risk of annoying your followers and causing them to feel negatively toward your company or unfollowing you. It would be better to post or Tweet three or four times a week over the course of a few weeks, than post 10 things in the first week and then pull a Houdini and vanish.
6. You’re being boring.
Listen, your social media marketing strategies need to include one key aspect: being interesting! Of course your social media is supposed to be a reflection of your company and your goals, but spice things up and don’t shy away from adding a little personality. Celebrating a birthday in the office? Post some pictures. Have a topical question? Ask it and find out what your followers think. People are going to be more interested in following companies that are interesting and engaging on social media. Ask yourself this: Would you want to follow your company? Make sure the answer is yes.
7. You’re not posting anything that’s on topic.
Okay, so you want to be interesting on social media, but you also have to post things that are on topic. Make sure you tweet and share things that are related to your industry—share your blog posts, company news, coupons, helpful industry tips (even if they’re not through your company), and more through your social media. Although you want to be interesting on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc., you can’t forget your original social media marketing strategies—attracting people to your website, getting leads, and making sales.
8. You haven’t grasped the “social” aspect of social media.
Social media allows you an amazing opportunity to really connect with your target audience. It should be a two-way conversation—comment on relevant posts, reply to comments and concerns, answer every question that comes your way, and take advantage of the social part of social media.
Again, think PR, Google, and help desk—all rolled into one.
9. You’re not posting at the right times.
Studies show that more people are active on social media during their “off-hours.” Things that are posted over the weekend and between 8 p.m. and 7 a.m. receive more likes, comments, and shares on Facebook than those posted at other times. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t post during the week and working hours, but don’t neglect the weekend and “off-hours!”
10. You are continuing to do things that don’t work.
Your social media marketing strategies look great on paper, but if they aren’t creating the success you expected, you need to figure out why. The only way you can do that is by having specific goals and tracking and measuring your efforts. At Blue Corona, we specialize in helping companies craft and measure successful social media marketing strategies to create conversions.
About The Author: Michelle is a content marketing specialist at Blue Corona. The most important thing you need to know about her is that she knows all the words to the song "Wild, Wild West." And she has a German Shepherd named Koda.
View more blogs by Michelle Mergner
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