Businesses of all sizes need to have a social media strategy in today’s digital world, whether you’re a global business with thousands of employees or a solo entrepreneur. It’s an essential tool to generate sales, build up your network of clients and customers, and boost brand authority. But without the right strategy in place, your business could face certain pitfalls that could be damaging to your brand. Here are four social media mistakes you should avoid as a business owner.
Not defining your target audience
When you’re using social media as a marketing tool, you’re marketing to a certain demographic, so it’s important to define your target audience early on. You want to be able to concentrate your efforts on the customers that will be most interested in what you have to say and what you’re offering.
If you put in the hard work into creating content and put it out into the world without first defining who it is you’re trying to target, you can’t be sure that it’s relevant to the people seeing it. This will simply lead to lacklustre results, so it’s a good idea to do the research before developing your strategy to ensure you’re posting content that will resonate with the people you’re trying to reach.
Choosing the wrong channels
There are numerous platforms to choose from now, but a mistake that many people make when using social media for business is to try and target all of them. It’s far better to niche down and choose one or two channels to build a loyal and engaged following, rather than spreading yourself too thin across all of the platforms.
Think about how the channel you’ve chosen aligns with your target audience and where your customers are likely to be found. These platforms should be your primary focus. For example, if you’re striving to create videos and visual content, TikTok and Instagram are a great option, while Facebook is better for the likes of tradespeople to provide updates about services or products as users use this channel as a social search engine.
Forgetting to engage
Social media requires two-way engagement. A mistake that a lot of businesses make is posting content and then neglecting to return to it, treating their page as a sounding board for the brand. However, social media should be used to build a dialogue and community, so when content is posted, it’s essential that you return to it to engage with users if they’ve left comments or asked questions.
Take the time to respond to these messages, whether positive or negative and try to use these channels as an opportunity to strike up conversations with your followers. But it’s also important to be authentic and honest in your responses, while still being professional. Social users can sense inauthentic content a mile away, and it’s something that is incredibly important to customers, so it should be prioritized.
Inconsistency is a common problem for businesses who will post several times a day for a week or two, and then abandon their page for months before posting again. It can be difficult to build a loyal following with this strategy though, as your audience doesn’t know when to expect content from you. You need to be able to strike a balance between posting enough without posting too much and annoying your followers.
There are best practices for specific platforms which you can use as a guide to ensure you’re posting enough to be seen and remain visible, without overdoing it. But quality also plays a key role here – don’t post just for the purpose of getting content on your page. Ensure that you’re posting content that is valuable and relevant to your audience.
Social media marketing is a process that can take time to refine, but the earlier you can break bad habits, the more effective your social strategy will be for your business. Having a good handle on the best practices when posting on different channels can help you gain the edge over your competitors and build your audience for greater success in your business, boosting conversions and building brand reputation. It’s never too late to correct the direction your social strategy is heading in and by avoiding these mistakes, you will benefit from better results going forward.