5 Social Media Mistakes Most Entrepreneurs Make
When starting any sort of new business venture, social media marketing and online promotion have become two of the most important ways for an entrepreneur to get their products out to consumers.
While social media is free (for the most part) and easy to use, it is also easy to make mistakes. Getting distracted by all of the bells and whistles that come with social media can keep a budding startup business from true success.
“Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.” – Seth Godin (Highlight to Share)
There are a variety of social media mistakes that entrepreneurs make when it comes to marketing their business online. Using social media platforms to communicate is a great format, but only when done properly. We’ve interviewed many authors on social media marketing and I compiled a list of the common social media mistakes most entrepreneurs make so you know what to avoid.
1. Living In The Past
Perhaps you were extremely accomplished in your previous ventures or maybe you have a very strong pedigree. There is nothing wrong with being proud of the accomplishments of your past, but most of your social media followers will not care to hear about them on a daily basis. When you share too much about your past achievements, it is a huge turn off to those who do not already know your work.
Just like anything else in life, talking about your past achievements is best done in moderation. There are instances where your past experiences will come in handy and when they are germane to the discussion, there is nothing wrong with bringing them up.
However, social media users are savvier than ever. They will see through any attempts to call attention to yourself by being boastful and may decide not to use your products or services because of your arrogant social media presence. Even worse, this affects your company’s word of mouth in a negative manner.
2. Becoming Mired In Negativity
Social media is great, because it gives potential consumers a chance to get to know you on a more personal level. This can be a bad thing if you are a person who allows themselves to get swept up in negativity. We all have bad days and personal beefs, but social media is no place to air your sour grapes or complain about the hard times in your life.
Consumers use social media as a means for escaping the drudgery of day to day living, so the last thing they want to be confronted with are the harsh realities of your life. Airing your personal frustrations about the problems that you are having with other people or whining about how hard you life is will lose you social media followers and create bad word of mouth.
Put yourself in the shoes of the consumer. Would you want to buy a product from someone who used their social media profile as a place to vent and complain? The answer is usually no in most instances. Before you fire off your negative social media post, take a moment to consider what your customer base will think of it.
3. Not Enough Attention Paid To Consumers
Social media is a great outlet to speak intelligently, but it is even more important for you to use it as a place to listen. By using social media to garner consumer feedback, you have the opportunity to collect information that is specifically designed to help you. If a consumer has a complaint, you can rectify it immediately and ensure that you do not lose their business.
You can also use social media to engage with customers on a more personal level, getting to know them better. While it is great to let consumers learn more about you, learning more about them allows them to feel more valued. Speaking to them about matters more important than your latest sales and promotions is pivotal.
4. Failing To Use Analytic Tools
The plethora of tools and usages that social media provides for its users can be overwhelming, causing an entrepreneur to lose sight of the ones that are most important. Social media comes equipped with analytic tools that are geared towards measuring the impact of your social media marketing push.
These tools often come free or can be purchased at exceedingly reasonable prices. The tools will show you which of your posts have become most popular and let you know if any of your materials have shown the ability to go viral.
Posts can also be scheduled when you are too busy to get to a computer or smartphone. With so many options available to you, an entrepreneur would be a fool not to at least explore some of them. No matter what goal you are trying to accomplish, there is an analytic tool designed to help.
5. Spreading Yourself Too Thin
One of the best parts of social media is its ability to offer you a means of promoting several different products at once. An entrepreneur can easily leverage social media’s reach to gain as many new customers as possible. There are so many possibilities and there are a million thoughts that are probably crossing your mind about how to pursue them. Enhancing your business prospects comes first and foremost.
Be careful about getting caught up in the madness of trying to promote several different products and services at once. Over promotion can fatigue the audience and cause them to pass by your posts when they are using social media. Training your focus on just one venture allows the audience to get to know the product better. It also decreases the the number of distractions.
As a business mentor for MentorMojo, virality expert Emerson Spartz gives some more effective social media marketing tips in detail here:
Recommended books to help avoid social media mistakes:
The Art of Social Media by Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick
Digital Bacon by Alex Rodriguez
Trendology by Chris Kerns
Do It! Marketing by David Newman
A World Gone Social by Ted Coine and Mark Babbitt