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Lessons to Learn from Social Media Mistakes

It’s hard to imagine that just a couple of years ago we didn’t have the option to mobile upload a photo while on the go, check in at our favorite restaurant, “poke” that first crush from way back in middle school, or update a status about the latest happenings in our lives. Well, thanks to the phenomenon of social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, the world has been forever changed in the ways that we communicate and share information…and it has also changed the way that we do business.

If you are trying to build a brand, drive traffic to your website, gain new customers, and reap the benefits of a successful company, it’s no secret that utilizing social media is one of the best methods for achieving such goals. However, because many businesses jump into social networking headfirst and attempt to blindly navigate their way, they aren’t able to maximize their business to the extent that they’d like. To ensure that you don’t fall into this category, check out the following social media mistakes for businesses and how you can avoid them:

Mistake #1: Social networking without a plan. For any goal to become attainable, a plan of action has got to be implemented. This same rule holds true for enhancing your marketing through social media efforts. So before you get started, use these tips to create a detailed outline for an effective social media campaign:

• Define your purpose for using social media sites
• Identify your ideal outcome
• Determine your target audience
• Decide how you plan to connect with your audience
• Find out how to combine your social media strategy with other marketing campaigns
• Select someone to be in charge of maintaining your social media pages
• Find a way to track your success

Mistake #2: Social networking without promotion. So you’ve created an award winning Facebook page and now that the work is done, all you have to do is just kick back and relax, right? FALSE. One of the most common missteps of social network marketing is taking to the web with the notion of “If I build it, they will come.” With social media, you have the chance to obtain a large base of loyal readers and customers if you promote it both online and off. Get active by adding buttons to your company’s website that links to your social media accounts. Also spread the word by inviting current customers to “like” your business page or follow your company on Twitter. Great content is worth sharing so when you share it with your friends they are likely to in turn share it with theirs.

Mistake #3: Social networking without consistency. It can be very disappointing to visit a page and find that the last time it has been updated was four months prior. So once you’ve marketed your social media pages and gained a solid foundation of fans and followers, don’t expect to keep them if you update your accounts on a basis that is far from regular. To hold onto followers that continue returning, make sure that someone is in charge of maintaining your social media accounts offering valuable updates with pictures, company/industry news, specials/sales and other information that your customers expect to receive through their social media connection to your business.

Mistake #4: Social networking without connecting. The whole point of social media is to provide an outlet for communication. So without communicating, your quest for business growth via social media will sadly be done in vain. In order to build an online presence and a successful business, it is imperative to build relationships with your audience. When visitors or your social media pages comment, tweet or send messages, show them they are important by responding in a timely fashion and creating meaningful dialogs. This will also help you learn more about your customers and what they want so that you can make the necessary adjustments to improve your business.

Mistake #5: Social networking without comparing. To remain on top of your game and provide your fans and followers with not only the most cutting-edge social media experience, but also of course with the best products or services that you have to offer, it is crucial to check out what your competitors are doing. Investigate the websites and social media pages of big names in your industry to uncover how they are interacting with their own audiences and how their audiences are reacting. By staying in the know with a little research, you will be able to better your tactics and stay one step ahead of the competition!
Now that you are aware of the common pitfalls in social media for businesses, remember to keep the lessoned learned in mind as you enhance your company’s marketing strategy by Facebooking and Tweeting your way to success!

Cindy McDonald shares with us this guest post about social media mistakes for businesses and how to avoid them. In addition to giving online marketing advice, Cindy also owns Best Christian Dating Sites where she gives online dating advice to Christian singles.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Juanita Waterman January 18, 2012 at 4:26 am

I must say this is one of the best Articles I have Read about Social Media Mistakes most out there say the same thing in complicated language. You have said in a way that makes it easy to understand. Great Blog I will have to share this with my friends. Thanks

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