Eight Social Media Marketing Mistakes To Avoid

Cecilia Nysing

Stacey E. Burke: 20-year lawyer and legal marketing expert whose company consults for law firms across all practice areas.

Social media continues to be a vibrant, engaging series of digital platforms designed to inform, engage, meet and connect. As most networks continue to grow their number of daily active users, newbies—and even experienced users—can be guilty of making some common social media marketing mistakes. Below, find a list of eight common mistakes you should avoid and why.

1. Caption Fails

The social media caption, or the words you type alongside or underneath your image or video content, is extremely important to the success of a social post. If you write a caption that’s too long, a user has to click to expand it, and many won’t. If you put your hyperlink toward the bottom of a long caption, it will reduce or even eliminate link clicks, a highly important key performance indicator. Hashtags are another strategic option where many users make huge mistakes. Do not make up your own hashtags. It serves no purpose. Hashtags exist to make your content searchable by topic, so research and use appropriate hashtags in each caption, but don’t overdo it. Also, hashtags are not helpful on all social networks, so only use them where appropriate. For example, on Facebook, I’ve found that they are largely worthless.

2. Bad Imagery

An image is the first thing a user will notice about a social media post. Make it interesting and ensure it is related to the subject matter of the content you are sharing. For example, don’t use a cartoon or juvenile-looking stock photo for a serious post about wrongful death. Do use infographics, videos and photography of real customers or clients if you have their permission and are legally able to do so. People are much more likely to pause, pay attention to and engage with content that has a human interest element or something intriguing in the imagery to catch their attention.

3. Valuing Visible Metrics Over Clicks

Many professionals who are new to using social media wonder why their tweets, updates or posts aren’t getting a lot of engagement. Someone even posited on Twitter asking how accounts with large followings don’t have a lot of individual tweet engagement. My answer to him (and to you) is simple: link clicks. While many users won’t have anything to say about your content and some won’t want to comment on it under their own name for privacy reasons, if they click on the link through to your website, blog, media coverage or whatever type of content you are sharing, that metric is really far more valuable than a bunch of random people clicking a heart icon on Twitter.

4. Posting Without A Strategy

Social media channels come with freely available metrics, so why not look and see what times of day and days of the week your content performs the best and schedule your posts at those times? Use the available metrics and drill down into the data to make your posting most effective. For instance, if your following skews male and you want to attract more female followers, write content that appeals to them, share it and promote it to women only in the industry or geographic location that makes sense for the post. The bottom line is: Don’t just post whenever you want, as often as you want, about whatever you want. Be strategic so you aren’t just sharing content that disappears into the vast void of social media.

5. Not Including Social Media Icons On Your Website

I still see this mistake more often than I can believe, from the smallest business to the largest. If you have a meaningfully built out and active social media presence on one or more channels, you should absolutely include links to those channels on your website in multiple locations so users can find the channels easily and follow you. Pro tip: Make sure that when a user clicks on the social media icons on your website, they open in a new tab or window.

6. Self-Promotion Only

If you only share content that promotes yourself or your business, it’s going to get boring really quickly. Mix it up by sharing content from relevant news sources, community events of interest, helpful tips from government agencies and more. If all your business is doing is sharing your own content on social media, you’re doing it wrong.

7. No Community Management

Social media is all about being social, so if you just auto-feed (which I don’t recommend) your content out to all of your networks and never check to see what happens as a result, you’re not being social. Community management is the process by which managers check the notifications for each channel and interact in some manner, including responding to comments, deleting and banning negative users, responding to user reviews, inviting those who engage with your content to follow your channel and more.

8. Fail To Advertise

Organic reach on social media is really no longer a viable strategy, especially on Facebook. Only a very small percentage of your followers even see your content these days, so putting even a small amount of money behind every post so you can target it to your followers and/or the appropriate target demographic will always make a huge difference in engagement and in increasing your following.


Forbes Business Council is the foremost growth and networking organization for business owners and leaders. Do I qualify?


https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2022/06/13/eight-social-media-marketing-mistakes-to-avoid/

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