Social Media Mistakes Made By Newbies

By on February 10, 2011

Social media takes time to fully understand. That’s why so many first time users get it wrong – because they dive in, thinking that it’s going to be easy. But everyone that’s tried to use social media for promotion, or to make money, knows it’s not easy at all.

social media for newbies

Courtesy of sweetspotmkth.blogspot.com

The sheer excitement from discovering the possibilities that social media holds is enough to get anyone geared up for a few ‘first round’ mistakes. Here are a few of the most common ones!

Spreading Yourself Too Thin

It’s one thing to set up a Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn account, and run them properly – and quite another to set up 26 new social media accounts, and only use 2 of them. The number one mistake that all newbs make, is spreading themselves to thin, on too many platforms at once. It wastes time and money in the end.

If you have 26 social media pages to maintain, then you need a team of at least 4 people – you can’t do it alone. If you think you can, you’re going to end up like 99% of the business owners that also thought they could. With no returns on your time investment. Soon, nearly all of your social media pages will be dormant, and that’s not good for business. Time will trail by, and you’ll give up – another victim of trying to do too much too soon.

Playing Around For A Few Weeks

It’s nice to play with social media to get the hang of it, but playing around can become a habit on platforms like Facebook and Twitter. If you don’t watch yourself, a lot of your time will suddenly divert to discovery, fun or useless activity. Then you’ll wonder why you haven’t made a cent, when you spend 5 hours a day working on your pages.

Going In Without a Plan

Another common problem with social media newbs is that they have no idea that social media requires strategy. Months roll by, and eventually they’ll wonder why things aren’t going well. That’s when they’ll make the discovery that a social media strategy is needed for any campaign to work. It’s no good sitting down and doing random things, you need to plan, implement and track your efforts.

Flooding Your Pages with Marketing

Now that you have 100 people at your disposal, you decide to get in their faces with loud, repetitive, spammy marketing messages – because that’s how the pros do it – right? Nope. You can spend an entire month shouting at your ever-dwindling community to buy from you, but without that treasured and valuable interaction that social media promotes, it will never happen. Stop flooding your pages with marketing messages, and put something on there worth reading!

Trying to Find the Easy Way

Get a pen. Write this down – there are no short cuts when using social media. If it seems too good to be true, it is. Don’t buy followers. Don’t schedule 1000 funny quotes from a random joke book to fire every 15 minutes on your Twitter page, when you’re a plumber. You need to learn how to do things right, and that means hard work, trial and error, and doing it the hard way.

Know any other mistakes that social media newbs make?
Tell us about them here!

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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