While social media offers incredible opportunities for businesses to engage with customers and build their brand, not all companies have been successful in deriving complete value from their social media efforts. The problem is usually with the way Social Media Marketing is handled. Rather than following a well thought of and strategic approach to social media, most brands jump into social networks just because others are doing it.
Marketers need to avoid these common pitfalls in embracing social media for marketing.
- No plan of action – Social Media Marketing needs solid research coupled with a practical plan in place. Most marketers fail to realize that though social networks is a fun place but the business behind is serious. They fail to ask themselves – What are their goals, who will be the target audience, how do we plan our content, does our social strategy align with our business objectives, who is going to manage social media etc. If the marketers do not have answers to the above questions and still on social media for advertising their products or services, it’s a major pitfall to watch out for.
- Acquiring mass followers and not targeted followers – While it’s good to have good social media following, marketers need to be very focused on engaging genuine audience who will be interested in your service or product. Those who engage millions of fans without a valuable output have stumbled over a pitfall.
- Focusing on product and not customer – Like conventional marketing, social media marketing also should focus on customers, their interests, making relationships, engagements and not purely selling products. One way broadcast about your product is a clear pitfall marketers should avoid.
- Not researching the competitors enough – It’s good to know what the competitors are doing, however, just being on social media just because your competitors are without researching what are they on social media, what sort of content are they posting and who their followers are, is a pitfall to watch out for.
- Not posting the right content – Marketers sometimes post standard content on all the social media platforms without understanding that the content on , say Facebook, might not be relevant to Twitter. The end result is uninterested audience with no progress on your social media marketing campaigns.
- Too casual or too much involvement – Both of these are a great recipe for social media marketing failure. Good promotion require right advertising to the right people at the right time. Too much of anything or offering nothing at all can ruin your business. Being concise and original is the key.
- Ignoring analytics – The world of social media is dynamic which means you continually need to optimize your SMM strategies. Continuously measuring progress, analyzing what works and what doesn’t, making adjustments as per analysis is the right way. Keeping social media marketing and analytics separate will be a pitfall marketers need to avoid.
- Not having a metric system in place – Generating ROI is definitely the end objective of any marketing campaign, however, the social media campaigns should be measurable using the right metric system so that decisions like allocating resources etc. can be reached at easily.
Apart from the pitfalls mentioned above, other major mistakes that marketers do are – not committing enough resources to make the campaign work, politically or socially insensitive posts, not promoting social media initiatives properly and forgetting the metrics.