8 Common Social Media Mistakes Businesses Frequently Make (And What To Do Instead)

 In General, Marketing, Social Media

There’s a lot of competition on social media, so it’s not enough just to have a presence. You need to know how to manage your social media presence well. It’s the only way you’ll get seen by your target audience and increase engagement with your brand. 

To help you out, we’ve compiled a few common mistakes that businesses make and what you should do instead.

1. Not responding to comments and messages

Have you ever tried to reach out to a brand on social media and received no response in return? It can be incredibly frustrating. One of the benefits of social media is that customers can have an ultra-quick way of getting in contact with a brand. They can ask questions and voice concerns (expecting relatively fast responses). However, if your audience finds they’re getting ignored on your socials, they’ll be less likely to engage with your brand in the future (or even do business with you). 

Instead of ignoring. Take time to listen to your audience. Look for opportunities to respond to comments and don’t forget to reply to direct messages. Think carefully about responses and deliver informative, helpful answers to improve the customer experience. 

2. Only talking about business 

Many brands look at social media as just another way to bring attention to their business. While, inherently, this isn’t wrong, it’s important to approach social media as more than just an advertising campaign. Social media is about curating conversations, not pushing sales. You want to add value to the lives of your audience. That means not just talking about what you can do, but providing helpful tips, entertainment, and more. Take time to really consider what your audiences’ wants and needs are. Deliver on what they desire to see and show them how you can help them achieve their goals. 

3. Making every post a manifesto

It can be tempting to craft a wordy post on most social media platforms. Unlike Twitter, most allow you to go on and on. In some circumstances, a lengthy post will be valuable because it provides pertinent information. However, in most cases, it’s best to stick to a shorter word length. People on social media typically have short attention spans and want to move through their feed quickly. They want to be able to absorb posts fast, and if they can’t, they’re more likely to scroll on by. Look at this insightful article from SproutSocial for some recommendations on character counts. 

4. Not using hashtags

Many brands have adapted to hashtags well, but others still struggle with the concept. Hashtags help people find you by lumping your posts in with similar content. How many hashtags you include in each post will depend on the platform you’re using. For example, it’s recommended that you use “up to 30” on Instagram, whereas it’s better to stick to just one or two on Twitter.

5. Being too trendy or not trendy enough

You must tread carefully with trends to find the right balance. Your brand can’t jump on board every time a new trend comes out. For one, that’s impossible, and two, not all trends will fit well with your brand. So, don’t try to fit every popular trend into your social media strategy. Instead, consider which trends mesh well with your brand and what your audience wants to see. Once you identify those trends, you can use them to help increase engagement on your socials. 

6. Not producing or sharing relevant content

The number of posts you stream out is not as important as the type of content you’re sharing. The posts you share need to be targeted to your audience. That means you need to clarify who your audience is. What people are interested in the products or services you offer? What type of content do they want to see? It’s about meeting their needs. 

7. Letting social channels go dark 

Many brands create social media pages but then don’t keep up with them. This is a big mistake. If potential customers find your page on social media but see that it’s not up to date, they may think you’re no longer in business or they may feel you’re not current within your industry. So, if you create a page, make sure that you consistently post to it, even if it’s just twice a week. Also, completely set up your profile, including a profile photo and pertinent information. 

8. Not proofreading  

This has probably happened to all of us at one time or another. You write an email, a text, or a social media post, and once you hit post or send, you realize you made a mistake (or autocorrect did). In your personal life, this usually isn’t too bad. In most cases, you can simply send a quick correction. However, when you’re representing a brand, it’s imperative that you get it right. That’s not to say that social media can’t be more informal than your usual business conversations, but your posts still need to have correct spelling. If your verbiage has misspellings or grammatical errors, it can cause some confusion. It can also make your brand look untrustworthy and unprofessional. 

We hope looking at some of these common mistakes and learning about what to do instead is helpful to you and your brand. If you want further assistance with your social media presence, please reach out to us at Headline Consultants

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