We all have bad habits. Whether it’s biting our nails, constantly driving like we’re on a racetrack or something you’d rather not admit to, we’ve all got them. Some are easy to break while others quickly find their way back into our lives. The same can be said for social media marketing habits. Once you get in a routine, it can be hard to break habits that are helping, but may possibly be hurting your brand.
Within social media marketing there is a lot of opportunity for brands to create great experiences for their communities, create brand affinity and influence purchasing decisions. A recent study found that 84% of CEOs and VPs say that they use social media to make purchasing decisions.
If you want to be one of those companies that has a positive impact on your community and generates tremendous value for your brand, make sure you’re not following ANY of these 7 weird social media marketing habits.
7 Weird Social Media Marketing Habits to Break NOW
#1 – Automating EVERYTHING
When you sit down and look at the mountain of tasks in front of you each day it can be tempting to try and automate as many of your social media marketing tasks as possible. While many social media tools can be a marketer’s best friend, it’s best to use them in moderation.
Depending on the tools that you use to publish on social media platforms, you’ll find that there are often issues with the ways that images or messages post on different platforms. That means you’re not creating the best possible user experience for your followers. Plus, taking a short amount of time to customize your message depending on where you’re publishing can vastly improve the user experience.
#2 – Jumping on the WRONG Bandwagons
The concept of newsjacking is not new to marketing. When done appropriate, it can be an incredibly effective means of extending your reach to an already engaged audience. So, instead of having to create demand and seek out an audience, you have a group of people already discussing the topic at a large scale.
However, we’ve all seen what happens when companies try and jump on the wrong bandwagon. This happens most on Twitter that is constantly trending a series of hashtags about a variety of topics. Before trying to incorporate one of these trending items into your brand social media messaging, make sure that you have done the research to understand the source and meaning behind the topic.
The negative impact that many brands have experienced by not doing their homework has been significant, and easily avoidable.
#3 – Engaging Too INFREQUENTLY
This is another habit that is often the result of little time and attention paid to social media communities. There is simply no replacement for true human interaction on social media platforms. Your followers have the potential to be potential clients, current clients, influencers of decision makers, other savvy and credible professionals and yes, trolls.
If someone takes the time to follow and engage with your brand on social media then it is your responsibility to respond accordingly. Of course not every comment or share requires a response, but if you’re checking in on the heartbeat of your community frequently, then responding to those messages that do stand out can become a much more manageable task.
#4 – Focusing Only On YOURSELF
What do you think the purpose of social media is for brands? Is it solely to provide updates about everything happening at your company? Or, is it to help your followers solve their problems, open the door to conversations and provide helpful resources to begin building credibility?
I hope that the answer is obvious. If a brand is using social media platforms as a means to only push out content about the happenings at their company, they’re doing it wrong. Social media presents a unique and more personal opportunity to interact with your followers. Utilize this opportunity to the fullest by uncovering what your followers care about and providing them with insight on those items, and asking them enticing questions to gain their opinions as well.
#5 – ASSUMING All Audiences Are the Same
Sure, social media marketing would be easier if you could publish the same content on each platform and have it resonate with the audience on that platform. Unfortunately, we don’t have control over why and how people use each platform.
The type of message that resonates with your Facebook audience will likely not have the same impact with your Instagram followers. Take some time to analyze your audience for each platform (built-in social analytics make this very possible) and see what you can uncover about them. Then, create a plan for each individual platform that still maintains a similar message, but presented in a way that the audience for that platform will respond well to.
#6 – Ignoring the Importance of VISUALS
Everyone is busy and are often viewing content on social networks on the go. Additionally, the amount of content that brands are producing has become so overwhelming that it often numbs users. In order to stand out in a sea of content, it’s essential that you add visuals to your social media content.
A great mix of visual campaigns as well as great visuals to accompany links to content can be the difference between a user scrolling past your content entirely, and clicking to engage further. Each social media platform has their own specifications for social images shared in-stream, so make sure that you are optimizing these visuals for a better user experience.
#7 – PRETENDING Advertising Isn’t Important
Let’s face it, the increase in competition for consumer attention, and changes in algorithms on social networks has made social advertising an important part of a social media strategy. If you think that you can still organically reach 100% of your audience on social networks then you likely haven’t been looking at the data.
We are still fortunately in a situation where a little ad spend can still get you pretty good exposure. So don’t go dumping all of your marketing budget into social advertising, but do reserve a portion to boost posts that are important and ads that can have a big impact. Tools like Adsvise provide easy to understand specifications for different ad types (and in-stream visuals) for most social media platforms.