How To Avoid These 7 Social Media Mistakes

By on February 16, 2012

A big part of learning how to succeed with social media, is by understanding and avoiding the mistakes that people make. Every small business needs to start somewhere, and this post will give you a great grounding in what you shouldn’t do when you begin. Take heed! These mistakes can be costly.

#1: Bare Minimum or Bust

Posting the occasional update on Facebook and Twitter, and popping up a blog once a month, is not how you succeed in social media. Doing the bare minimum is a waste of time. You need strategy, innovation and creativity to succeed in the social sphere. Avoid making this mistake by planning for success first, with a social strategy.

#2: Responses as an Afterthought

Social media is about two-way communication. If you’re posting like mad, and firing off quick replies: stop! Replies and responses are the most important part of your strategy. Your goal is always to create and stimulate a conversation. Avoid this horrible mistake by spending time replying, with insight and authority.

#3: A 1 Person Social Strategy

There is no way that you can maintain a great social presence on your own. One person social campaigns don’t work, unless they’re done by a pro – who works on it full time. You need help. Avoid this mistake by applying all of your effort to one social page, or hire a team who can dedicate the right resources to your strategy.

#4: Social Media is Free!

Let’s get something straight – social media is not free. It takes investment on your part to make it work. You’ll have to invest in content, SEO, multimedia, strategies and learning resources before you can kick it off properly. It’s extremely rare that someone gets massive returns without investing any money in social media.

#5: Cross Networking is King

For a complete social strategy you have to connect and unify your social sites. You can’t just work on each site individually. Each piece of content you create, needs to be reworked and shared in other formats across all of your networks. Avoid wasting your content themes by only publishing them on one social site!

#6: Ignoring Social Analytics Tools

It’s possible to monitor, track and analyze a ton of data from your marketing efforts on social sites. Yet, people still ignore analytics tools! If you don’t know what works and what doesn’t, you’ll keep making the same mistakes and your campaign will fail. Avoid failure by learning how to use analytics tools before you launch a strategy.

#7: Not Nurturing Real Relationships

It can be an overwhelming task, but you must try and connect with people, to nurture real online relationships. It’s these community members that will go on to buy from you. If you’re distant or not genuinely interested in befriending them, it will show. Avoid this by becoming a people magnet. Make those relationships bonds like steel!

Is there a social media mistake that isn’t on this list? Please add a mistake below, to share your knowledge with our community.

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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