5 bad habits of social media

We are aware that you may have seen thousands of articles like this on the web but it’s always good to remind yourself of some of the unwritten rules to deal with your social media activity, especially if you are a smaller business trying to find your way into the social media sphere for the first time.

1) Don't Focus Solely On Self Promotion

An obvious one but one that I feel still needs to be said. Don’t just talk about how wonderful your services are. People are engaging with content that they find interesting so give it an angle, much like PR.  You need to add value, show your platform to be a source of relevant and worthwhile informational content, and be subtle when talking about what your company does or offers. For example; throughout this blog, there will be self-promoting links that are subtle but not overbearing for the reader, and therefore your audience is more likely to take action from your advice.

2) Don't Turn Your Back On Social Interaction

Especially if you are a small business. Social media is about maintaining an active community and two-way conversation with like-minded advocates, fellow follower, and your brand. Consumers often find social media to be the most efficient tool to express their ideas, questions, or complaints about companies. Get involved and build in processes to pass this information on to the right people who can deal with it. The only exception to the rule is where the channel (within the platform) has been set up for one-way informative soundbite updates for a solo specific purpose. For example, a legal court sending out updates on results from cases as they happen that day because they can’t be seen to have an opinion.

3) Don't Share Your Content At Random Times, But Do Be Consistent.

Timing is important in social media. Find out when your audience is most active or when they are more likely to appreciate your posts. Especially do not ignore weekends or non-business hours. Depending on the platform and the post, these hours could be the most interactive periods for you, where your posts will gain greater impressions. 

4) Don't Ignore The Many Different Ways Of Communicating

The web runs on symbols – grouped characters (such as letters and numbers) forming words and data. But people are not algorithmic machines. You need to communicate mediums (Cognitive Communication), to engage with them on all communication levels. You can use images, videos, apps, games, contests, polls, info graph’s, photographs… the possibilities are endless, it just needs excellent imagination; a good idea of the technology available; tried and tested common sense; research (results from your metrics). Some mediums work better in particular platforms than others, for example, Facebook audiences love the simplicity of imagery. Find the right way to communicate with your followers. 

5) Don't Try To Be Everywhere All At Once

You just can’t manage them all of the time. You will be overstitching your people resources and over-promising to deliver interesting content consistently. Find out which platforms your target audiences are interacting on, and what they are interested in on that platform (the ‘Why’ – making your content relevant). You will also need to learn the capabilities of the platforms, and the best social media management software for your needs. If you need to move fast do seek the help of someone who really knows their stuff, such as a tech-savvy friend or, better still, a good social media consultant or freelancer. Social media takes time to gain traction, but speaking to someone who knows their stuff and adapting a strategy, will save you an enormous amount of time and get you your ROI faster in the long run. 

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