Resources and Tips / Don’t do it! How to avoid common social media mistakes (and what to do instead)

Don’t do it! How to avoid common social media mistakes (and what to do instead)

By SME Institute

For small businesses, a strong presence on social media platforms is an essential marketing tool. Whether it’s Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, Facebook or elsewhere, it’s critical to leverage the power of social media for the benefit of your brand. But with all that power comes the potential for missteps and mistakes. So how can you make sure you’re doing it right? In this blog post, we’ll look at some of the most common errors made by business owners – and more importantly, what you should be doing instead.

Not having a plan

Before diving into social media, it’s important to set clear goals and objectives for what you want to accomplish on each platform you use. Your social media channels should reflect your company’s values and strengthen your brand. Without a plan, it’s easy to get lost in the noise of all the other accounts out there competing for attention.

Not Posting Consistently

One of the biggest mistakes businesses new to social media make is not posting consistently. If you want loyal followers who will engage with your content, it’s important to build trust by maintaining a consistent presence on your chosen platform(s). A good rule of thumb is to post at least several times a week (but no more than a couple times a day), so that your followers know when they can expect new content from you.

Posting Irrelevant Content

A surefire way to lose followers and potential customers is by posting irrelevant content on your page. This could include anything from political statements to personal musings; content that has nothing to do with your brand or mission statement should be avoided at all costs – and there are ample examples of businesses who have learnt this lesson the hard way. Before posting anything on any platform, ask yourself if it’s relevant to your business and its mission. If not, don’t post it.

Failing To Engage With Your Audience

Social media isn’t just about pushing out content – it’s also about connecting with your followers. That means responding to comments in an appropriate manner (not just using canned responses), interacting with other users through likes and shares, and hosting polls or “ask me anything” sessions. Committed engagement will go a long way towards building relationships with your network – which is essential if you want them to become paying customers.

Using Too Many (or the Wrong) Hashtags

Hashtags are an important part of getting noticed on social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter, but using too many hashtags in one post can be off-putting for potential customers. Stick to using just one or two relevant hashtags for each post—any more than that and it looks like self-promotion. Similarly, if you’re using the wrong ones, you won’t be connecting with your target audience. Do some sleuthing to find out which hashtags are trending and relevant to your business and use them with care.

Not Understanding Each Platform

No two social media platforms are the same. Every platform has its own set of rules and best practices, so it’s important to understand the nuances of each one before jumping in. On Instagram you’ll need to use eye-catching images and videos, while posting on LinkedIn will call for a more business or career-oriented pitch. Make sure you’re familiar with all the features and functions of each platform so that you can use them to your advantage.

Ignoring Analytics

Analytics (such as those offered by Google) are an invaluable tool for any business owner looking to make the most of their social media presence. This data can help inform your strategy by providing insights into which posts are performing well and which aren’t. It can also give you a sense of who your target audience is and what they’re interested in. Failing to track analytics means missing out on valuable information that could help improve your results over time.

Social media has become an indispensable tool for businesses of all sizes—but it’s easy for business owners to make mistakes when navigating the various platforms. From posting too much (or not enough) to ignoring analytics data, there are several common pitfalls that can trip up even the savviest entrepreneurs. By staying aware of these missteps and adjusting your strategy accordingly, you can ensure that your presence on social media is both effective and successful in helping grow your business.

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