Social media marketing is essential these days.
Social media marketing has become a key way that many brands get in front of new audiences and connect with their customers. There are 3.5 billion social media users out there, which equals about 45 percent of the world’s population. The average user spends about three hours per day on social media networks, and 54 percent of them are using at least part of that time to research products. The bottom line is that there is simply no other way to reach such a wide audience.
Although most business owners are aware of the potential of social media, too often, many of them get it wrong. Have you found yourself saying, “Social media marketing just doesn’t work for me”? If so, there’s a possibility that you’re sabotaging your own efforts on social platforms.
There’s no one way to go about social media marketing. Many brands have made a name for themselves by striking out and being different, but unfortunately, common mistakes can undermine your efforts as well as your marketing dollars.
5 Common Social Media Marketing Mistakes
Mistake #1. Talking at your followers instead of to them.
With the ability to reach such a wide audience, many brands on social media see it as a great opportunity to tell the world about upcoming promotions, sales, products, events, and services. While social media certainly is a great place to promote your business and what you have to offer, there’s a lot more to it than that.
One of the reasons why social media has become such a valuable form of digital marketing is its ability to actually build a connection with your audience. With most forms of advertising online, you’re talking at your customers, and the only real ability they have to respond is to take advantage of your offer or not. Social media, though, offers an excellent avenue for two-way communication.
On social media, it’s a mistake to talk at your followers instead of to them, and when people interact with your brand, make sure that you keep the conversation going.
Mistake #2. Only posting sporadically.
Do you want to stay relevant on social media? If so, one of the best ways to stay in the conversation is by making sure that you’re posting on a regular basis. If you wait until you feel like posting or for inspiration to strike, chances are, you won’t be posting nearly enough to stay in at the forefront of your followers’ minds.
In order to ensure that you’re posting on social media consistently, you’ll want to create a posting schedule. While it’s best to post as often as possible, this can quickly get overwhelming for a lot of small business owners, who are usually busy running the day to day of their businesses.
There’s no magic recipe as to how often you should post on social media, but there are a few basic guidelines to keep in mind that will help you get started:
- Post on Facebook as often as once per day, but at least three times per week.
- Post on Twitter as often as up to five times per day, and a minimum of five times per week.
- Post on Instagram up to once per day, and a minimum of once per week.
Of course, when putting together your posting schedule, you’ll want to focus the majority of your efforts on the most valuable platforms for your industry.
Mistake #3. Posting for the sake of posting.
Posting on a regular basis is an important part of staying relevant in the minds of your followers; however, that doesn’t mean that you should post for the sole sake of posting, especially if you don’t really have anything valuable to say or don’t feel particularly inspired to share something.
Unfortunately, when content is forced, it usually feels forced, and since savvy social media users are excellent at detecting inauthenticity, posting just to post can quickly undermine your social media marketing efforts and could hurt your engagement rates.
Some social media platforms, like Instagram, will actually stop showing your content to users that don’t actually engage with them. So if you’re posting just to post, your posts could end up being less visible over time.
Instead of posting just to post, be intentional with your posts. Before deciding to post something on social media, ask yourself if it’s something your followers might find helpful or interesting.
One way to ensure that you’re posting quality content regularly is to create a content calendar ahead of time. This way, you can jot down ideas as inspiration strikes instead of trying to come up with interesting content on the fly.
Mistake #4. Failing to take advantage of video.
There are so many great ways to connect with people on social media. Text, images, and infographics all make awesome posts, but when it comes to social media, nothing is more powerful than video marketing.
Did you know that social media posts that contain a video earn an average of 48 percent more views? There are more than 8 billion videos viewed each day on Facebook, and Snapchat users consume an average of 10 billion videos each day.
The bottom line is that, if someone is given the option between watching a video or reading a post, they’ll overwhelmingly choose the video. There’s almost no other form of marketing that’s quite as effective as video marketing, and there’s no better place to share your videos than on social media.
Mistake #5. Not knowing or understanding your audience.
Social media marketing provides you with a new way to connect you with your audience, but in order to make the most out of that connection, it’s essential that you know who your audience is and that you listen to them.
When you understand who your audience is, you can post specifically for them. This will lead to more engagement with your content and more shares, which will help you reach an even wider audience.
Think about who might be most likely to buy your products and services, or to follow your brand on social media. It’s also a good idea to utilize social mentions and other listening tools to learn more about demographics, gauge the interests of your audience, keep track of your brand’s social media presence, and more.
There’s a lot of opportunity on social media, but as you can see, it’s all too easy to get it wrong. If you’d like to work with a team that can help you get it right, learn more about Marketing 360®’s social media solutions online today.