There are plenty of tips for how to build a respectable social media following for your brand, but there are just as many tips on things to avoid. Ways to drive away a following, or to kill a social media profile before it’s even had a chance to gain an audience, are plentiful. Social media can be a great boon to a fledgling business, but it can also be a death knell. Here are five things to NOT do if you want to build a loyal following on social media.
Have an Inconsistent Brand Message
If you’re a small business trying to amplify your social media presence, you’ll probably create profiles on a variety of platforms; LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. You can quickly confuse potential customers by having inconsistent messaging and tone across your profiles. One rookie mistake is to use different graphics or logos across different platforms and your website; just create one great logo (which you can do for free here) and plaster it everywhere.
Provide a Bad User Experience
You don’t need a perfect website, but you do need to have a well-built website that can provide a good user experience to your customers. Your social media marketing program should have as one of its main objectives to drive customers to your digital storefront, but if it’s glitchy, doesn’t load, or is a clunky website, you’re going to lose potential customers quickly.
BugHerd is one web service that will check your website for bugs and glitches before you roll it out to the public. If you’re struggling with building a good website, try it out to get feedback on your site and user experience in minutes. Don’t send your following to bad links ever again!
In today’s era of super-charged politics, you may be wondering if this is good advice. Many major brands have been making very political statements, and it doesn’t seem to have much of an effect on their bottom line. If you’re a small business owner, though, you can’t afford to take the risk associated with posting political content. Having a vision, company beliefs, and transparent goals is important, but putting blatantly political material on your social media pages can land you in hot water quickly, with either (or worst case, both) sides. Why alienate half of your target market?
Forget About Video
People watch a lot of videos on the internet. It’s one of the most effective advertising and marketing tools available, and you’d be amiss to leave it out of your social media marketing plan. Don’t saturate your page with bad videos, but put out quality content on a regular basis to keep your followers engaged with your brand. Humor is always appreciated, and you have to remember to play the long game; building a social media following is all about having a consistent long-term reputation for quality content.
Spend Too Much Time on It
You’re a small business owner, which means you’re very busy. Managing multiple social media platforms can be a hassle, and you can easily spend too much time and energy on building a following, to the detriment of other aspects of your business. There are free or inexpensive apps out there for helping small businesses manage social media, or you could hire a freelancer to help you manage your marketing. Tie your time to the ROI of your activities, and if something isn’t building your following or adding to your bottom line, cut it out.
Bringing It Together
Managing your social media is something you can easily sink too much time into, and making a mistake could be costly (though it may not be the end of the world). If you want a bustling social media presence with plenty of engaged followers, avoid these mistakes.