Social media is an excellent way to boost organic traffic for your small business. With the right social media marketing strategy, you can see a drastic increase in viewer numbers and sales. The problem is that many small businesses don’t have the right social media marketing strategy. This means that at best, the business is wasting its time on a strategy that isn’t working. At worst, it could be harming its own brand. Here are some of the most glaring social media mistakes made by small businesses, and how you can avoid them:
1. Not Having Social Media Accounts for Your Business
If you’re not currently using social media at all for your small business, then you’re missing out on the opportunity to reach a large number of potential customers. You wouldn’t be alone either, as only 53 percent of small businesses were active on social media as of 2015.
It’s understandable that you may not want to commit more of your business’s limited time and resources towards social media, but it’s becoming more and more of a necessity. Think about how necessary it is to have a website for your business in the modern era. It’s becoming the same with social media. To make sure that no one else snatches up your business’s name, you should register it with all the major social media networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google Plus.
2. Trying to Do Too Much Too Soon
Many businesses jump headfirst into social media and immediately try to build their brands on every platform. The problem with this is that you can quickly spread yourself too thin. It’s not easy to interact with people and post consistently when you’re doing it across four or five different networks. Avoid this by building your brand on one or two networks at a time, achieving measurable results on each platform before deciding to expand out to another.
3. Not Using All Available Tools
A successful social media presence requires more than just one person sitting on their computer, thinking of interesting things to post. Constructing meaningful social media campaigns is hard and involves a lot of moving parts. Rather than trying to create and manage everything yourself, consider paying a nominal fee to use a social media campaign management service that will allow you to easily create and automate campaigns.
Creating the campaign is only half the battle; You must also be able to track the campaign’s impact on your bottom-line in order to justify allocating resources to social media. A business intelligence dashboard can give you a clear view of how much you’re spending and earning from each social media campaign, as well as from your other marketing channels. Armed with this data, you’ll be able to understand which marketing channels are right for you, and what level of social media presence is the most profitable.
4. Lack of Interaction
Remember that it’s called social media for a reason. You can’t just hop on, make the occasional post to promote your products, and call it a day. Your small business’s social media account and posts won’t get many viewers that way, and the viewers it does get aren’t going to come back.
Your business needs to interact with people. You should be starting conversations, handling any customer issues that are brought up on your page, and making sure to respond to all your comments. One of the biggest pet peeves customers have is when a business doesn’t respond to them on social media or fails to respond in a timely manner. Show your customers that you care by responding promptly to them.
5. Not Being True to Your Brand
Businesses of all sizes have made the mistake of trying to pander to specific demographics on social media. One of the most common ways businesses do this is by inserting slang into their social media posts. It’s transparent and doesn’t leave a good impression in the target audience. Maintain a consistent brand voice. Slang is fine, as long as it fits your brand’s image. A skateboard shop can get away with using slang in its social media posts. An accounting firm will look ridiculous doing that. Different brands need to communicate in different ways.
Effective social media marketing isn’t easy, considering the large number of businesses that now use social media for that very purpose. But if you avoid these common mistakes and stay active, you’ll stay a step ahead of your competition.
This article was originally written by Lewis Robinson for the Heyo Blog.