Avoid these 6 social media practices

Avoid these 6 social media practices

These days, maintaining a presence on social media is a must have for any business to have a reliable connection with their clientele. Social media has become the gateway to success for most businesses, but it has also spelled failure for some.

In this post, we’ll look at some of bad practices on social media that can tarnish any brand’s impression on the public or to a lesser extent, lower engagement from the audience. Not surprisingly, there is no lack in the kind of strategies brands use to boost their engagement, only to be shot down by the public, with scathing consequences. 

Here are some common practices (or lack thereof) that tend to cause only disaster. 

Not Setting Goals

Many brands join social media just because their competitors are also there. Many also expect social media to produce success without applying much effort. Truth of the matter is, most of your target audience may not know about you (yet), or even care. For you to overcome these two barriers, a social media strategy needs to be set. This should include a proper posting schedule and regular high quality content creation. You also need to be receptive to feedback. Since it’s social media, a two-way communication is necessary. 

Set goals, such as to achieve a 60% conversion rate, or to increase ROI, and measure the changes in these statistics with time. Use different methods, like contests, blog posts and special discounts to improve audience engagement with your content. 

Buying likes

Buying likes has become quite easy, and is prevalent on some social networks such as Facebook and Instagram. In just a matter of days, your page’s like count will skyrocket from 3 digits to 5 digits, or even more. Problem with this approach, despite the immediate gain, is that the likes are mostly from bots, and hence will not result in any increase in engagement on your page. Those likes will not convert to sales, or any form of beneficial conversion, for your business.

Let your page’s likes and followers grow naturally. You can also spend money to sponsor your content in the form of ads, which is a much more effective way of generating an audience that genuinely cares about your products. 

Not Controlling Content Flow

The internet is a wonderful place, where anyone can share anything whenever they like. With that in mind, you’ll be bombarded with spam, which will be obnoxious to you and your page’s audience. You will also have to deal with the occasional trolls and derogatory remarks. There is no way to stop these kinds of commenters from showing up, but what you should do is to be on the look-out and delete any such comment, that’s spammy or plain offensive. 

Just to clarify, by negative comments, we mean comments that threaten or use offensive language against you or another customer on the page. A comment that points out a problem, or criticizes your brand, should not be deleted; instead their problem should be solved immediately. Your first step is to reply respectfully in public, and reassure them of the fix. Remember, you cannot satisfy every single customer, but you can mend some of the damage done, by being considerate, even to the most irrational customer. 

Publishing low quality, click bait content. 

A brand’s job on social media is twofold. Interact with your audience by listening to what they have to say, and create engaging content that’s of high quality and helpful. However, many try to use the shortcut method of clickbait articles. What is a clickbait article? A clickbait article is an article that usually lacks any useful content, and instead, uses headlines to feed one’s curiosity so as to click and read more. The article’s content is usually overblown, sensationalist and inaccurate depictions of events and phenomena.

Clickbait articles used to be common on social media, a few years ago, but their occurrence have greatly reduced now. Nothing good comes off producing useless paragraphs of text, packaged with a clickbait title such as “A wild moose attacked a couple, you won’t believe what happened next.” 

Instead, if you run a blog, focus on creating innovative, refreshing and genuinely useful content for your customers. It will result in happy readers, and better engagement on your website and blog.

Hijacking every trend

Twitter is your go-to place to research trends. South African Salvation Army and many others have used these trends creatively and have achieved great success. Others, not so much

Bandwagoning isn’t exactly unknown among brands, and it’s been widely accepted as a great way to leverage your way to success. But here’s the catch, you have to research on the hashtag before committing yourself to it. It takes less than a minute to find out what it’s about, and the prior research can save you from trouble. 

Also keep in mind, not every trend is for your brand. If you’re a used car dealership, bandwagoning your way through a city council reform campaign is not a great fit for business. Your target audience probably doesn’t care either, and it will be blatantly obvious you’re in it for your own self-promotion. Hence, pick and choose campaigns that do not look out of place with your target audience. 

Not Using Analytics

If you’re on social media, set specific goals , as well as methods to achieve those goals. You want to know how effectively your strategy is working. That’s where analytics come in. 

Most social networks, such as Twitter and Facebook have built in analytics tools that are effective at measuring your audience’s engagement, potential customers clicking on your links and the mentions you get. You can easily check your page’s growth by comparing it with last month’s or last year’s statistics. Apart from the social media website’s own analytics tools, there are third party analytics apps that can help go the extra mile in measuring ROI (return on investment), conversion rates, demographics and even scheduling posts in advance. Some of analytics tools are: 

  • Buffer - For Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Allows you to schedule your posts. It’s basic package is free. 
  • BuzzSumo - Allows you to track trending content, relevant to your business, and audience. Paid. 
  • Google Analytics - Provides advanced analytics tools for your website, to measure ROI, traffic from social media networks, referrals and much more. It’s free, and we highly recommend it. 
  • Iconosquare - Provides analytics for your Instagram account. Basic package is free.
  • Tailwind - Provides analytics for your Pinterest account. Tracks performance of your boards, keywords and hashtags used. Paid. 

Keep in mind, the purpose of these analytics tools, paid or unpaid, is to aid you to achieve your goals on social media. Hence, it’s crucial to set milestones, so you have a purpose in mind, whenever you post that next promotional image, or funny meme. 

Your Turn

We discussed some of the bad practices that can stop any brand from reaching their true potential. So with all this in mind, it’s now your turn to blaze your way through social media, confidently but cautiously, and successfully growing your business.

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