No one debates the user friendliness of social media sites (well almost no one) but very few people fully understand how to use social media effectively for business pages and marketing.
After scouring the web, here are a few tips to avoid the most common mistakes in social media:
- Using the wrong metrics: Most people feel that the number of likes your page has on Facebook is the final indicator in how well your page is doing, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Facebook has recently updated their page Insights to make tracking your metrics easy and more user friendly, but you’ll notice that more emphasis is placed on engagement than simple page likes. Other services also offer social media metrics and analytics, such a Youtube and Sprout Social. Use these to monitor your brand more closely.
- Too many channels/pages: Years ago when social media started booming, companies jumped at the opportunity to have a social presence online. Many companies ended up with multiple (sometimes even hundreds) branded handles and pages. The rush also pushed brands to stretch themselves thin by trying to have a place on every social media outlet. Avoid this by consolidating your pages/profiles into a unified front and just pick the outlets that will be most effective for your brand.
- All About You: No one likes to listen to a person talk only about themselves all the time. The same is true for your businesses’ social media profiles. Obviously you want to sell your products and services to an audience that is interested, but the focus should be on what you can offer that’s of value. Listen and respond. Your content should center around knowing what your target audience wants and providing them with interesting information. Feature your fans and give shout outs to those who use your products and you will notice an increase in engagement as well as loyalty for you taking notice.
- Social Media in One Department: Marketers market, customer service helps clients and human resources recruits, right? Wrong! All of these departments have something to contribute to your social media pages, so limiting social media to one department leaves out valuable resources and information. Make sure everyone in your company is on the same page with your social media presence and encourage participation from everyone.
- No Direction: So now that you have your whole company on board to contribute to social media, what now? You have to establish a clear path for your social media profiles and individual purposes for all. Set up a group calender with a posting schedule and determine customer response protocols so you don’t have duplicate posts or things flying under the radar. Meet often and keep the lines of communication open and active, because above all social media is just that.