Social media marketing and social networking are superb marketing tools....if they're used right. Use them wrong and they're a major waste of time.
If you're one of those people who say "Tried it. Social media doesn't work for my business," here are sixteen reasons why you might not be seeing success:
- You don't have a plan.
Social media is marketing, and successful marketing requires a plan. Scattershot tweeting or posting is a waste of time and effort.
- You don't have a goal (you would if you had a plan)
What do you want to accomplish with your posts and tweets? Visibility for your business? Roll out of a new product? Drive traffic to your website? Establish yourself as an expert? Get people to your workshops? You need to know what you want to achieve before you start. How else do you know what to talk about?
- You don't have a target audience that you want to engage (yep, you would if you had a plan!).
Pretty tough to know what to post if you don't know what your followers are interested in.
- You're all about self-promotion.
This is about as effective as thinking networking is all about telling everyone why they should buy from you. If the bulk of your posts include "I" or "me", fix them. Fast! Hire an agency for instagram followers growth!
- You don't get the "social" part of social media/networking.
Being social requires some sort of sharing and connecting. Commenting on other people's posts, retweeting, sharing posts that you find interesting, sharing posts that might help someone else, responding when a friend asks a question. If you're not doing that, you're doing "solo" media. Lots of luck with that!
- You're not following anyone.
I don't go along with the "follow everyone who follows you" theory, but I do know that I learn a lot from following the right people (those who tweet about what I'm interested in or fun quirky things). So I'm always looking for interesting people to follow. And I periodically go through my new followers to see if I want to follow them in return.
- You're boring people.
If your posts aren't of interest to your followers, why should they follow you? Or recommend that others follow you? Your network will stagnate.
Make your posts and tweets Interesting, timely and relevant.
If your goal is to gain visibility as a real estate expert, talk about real estate issues and news. Trends you're seeing (or reading about). Helpful tips for prospective buyers. Things that new homeowners need to know. Posts that will get real estate reporters to follow you.
And don't be afraid to throw in the occasional quirky post just to make it fun. Posts that make people smile get shared.
- You're inconsistent.
It's not necessary to tweet it doesn't hurt. I've read some tip sheets that say 4x /day is optimum but that's assuming you have something of value to tweet about.
Watch the people who have lots of followers, and see what they tweet about and how often. Same goes for Facebook. Don't post and then disappear for a month. Your followers will do the same.
And don't forget that your ranking in Google is affected by Twitter and Facebook. The more you tweet and post, the more Google finds you and the higher you appear in search.
- You over post and tweet endlessly.
Ever opened your Twitter feed only to find eight tweets in a row from one person? Then you know what I mean. Try and space your tweets out during the day. Don't inundate your followers. You'll lose them.
You've turned social media over to an intern or an employee who doesn't "get" marketing or understand what you do. Bad move.
You're outsourcing social media to someone who doesn't understand what your company does and what you want to achieve. Equally bad move, not to mention a waste of money.
You forgot about keywords. One of the coolest things about Facebook and Twitter is that your posts and tweets get picked up by Google. This not only gives you more visibility but moves your rankings up.
You should be using keywords since new followers will use them to find you. This means using them in your profiles as well as your posts.
- You're using an auto responder to thank people for following you.
I don't think I'm alone in saying that this is using Twitter to spam. If I'm following you, I'm doing so because I think you'll tweet about things that interest me. Cluttering up my feeds with messages that say "thanks for following me" or "have a good day" are nice and all but hold no value. They're automatically generated so it's not like you're sending them to connect with me. It's just one more tweet to delete.
- You're pretending to connect but you're really all about selling.
I had this happen to me the other day. After receiving a nice invite to connect (to which I responded and mentioned what a nice message it was), I got a generic sales pitch the next day. And my new follower got blocked.
- You're not being authentic.
Authenticity and transparency are two of the key attributes for a solid social media/social networking connection. Try and portray yourself as someone you're not, and you'll get called on it.
- You're not big on sharing.
Since that's pretty much what social networking is all about, if you 're not into sharing, you shouldn't be here.
By no means is this a complete list, but it's a good starting point.
If you're doing any of the above, you're sabotaging your social media efforts. Start over and do it right. Or don't do it at all. You'll free up a ton of time.