There’s no denying the value social media holds in today’s digital world. Businesses are constantly looking to reach wider audiences to engage with potential customers and build brand recognition. However, it’s also becoming increasingly difficult to do so without making mistakes that end up hindering your efforts (or even damaging your brand). We didn’t become a top Kansas City social media marketing agency by not following our own advice, so in an effort to pass a little bit of it on I’ve broken down the most common mistakes I encounter here:
1. No Strategy
I’ve written about this previously, but one of the biggest mistakes a business can make when it comes to their social media marketing is not having a clear and defined plan or strategy. Without intent, your social media efforts are likely to feel disjointed and as a result – ineffective. Take time to develop a comprehensive plan that outlines your goals, your target audience, and the specific actions you’ll take to achieve them. Start with the ideal outcome (clicks, conversions, etc) – and work back from there. What does your 30 day calendar look like – down to the graphic and text. Do these posts accomplish your goal? Do they incentivize interaction? Leave nothing to chance.
2. Keep a Watchful Eye
Failing to actively monitor and manage your online presence is an easy way to have your efforts wasted. Planning and posting is only half the battle. Social media at its core is a public roundtable of sorts. Everyone can watch, and everyone can interact. That’s why it’s crucial to constantly monitor and manage your online presence, ensuring that you’re presenting a positive image to potential customers — and that they agree. Regularly check for comments and messages, and stay on top of negative feedback and reviews. You don’t have to agree with all of it, but ignoring it (both in terms of how your business operates, as well as the comments/reviews themselves) serves nobody (well, except for your competitors, maybe).
3. Overlooking the Importance of Visual Content
I’ve griped about it before, but the real core takeaway is to pay attention. Pay attention to what you’re posting, pay attention to the things that get you to engage on other social profiles. The type of visual content (photos, images) you post can make or break your engagement online. Consider a building downtown – one with a blank white wall, and the other with a colorful mural. By default, there’s one that will stand out in your mind and serve as a sort of anchor (whether it be a fun memory, a reminder, etc). The same applies to social media. It’s no longer enough to “just post”. The content itself needs to be compelling enough to warrant your visitor or follower’s attention. Include a wide variety of visual content in your posts. Videos, photos, infographics, memes – whatever it takes. Ditch the reused photos, the dimly lit picture of your plate of tacos, the weirdly cropped version of your logo, etc. Ask yourself how you’d react to seeing your hypothetical post on one of your competitor’s pages.
The three most common mistakes I see are failing to have a proper plan, not actively monitoring and interacting with your online presence, and overlooking the importance of unique, visually-compelling content. Avoid these mistakes and you’ll be beating out 80% of your competition right out of the gate.