Social networking carries a number of risks; it’s better to be aware of them before starting work.
Mistake #1. Equivocation
You are not your target audience (TA). That is why the posts on your business profile should be well-liked by followers and prospective customers, and not you.
The risk of falling into the classical distortion of “I dislike it, so the target audience does,” is particularly high for small and medium-sized businesses, where executives are fully involved in all processes. They focus not as much on knowledge and experience, as on their beliefs about communication and target audience. Unfortunately, it often turns out that posts by such communities are interesting only to the director and his staff.
Mistake #2. Wrong goals
According to many studies, most medium and small businesses treat social networks as a tool for pushing up sales. Nevertheless, it is not worth doing it as obviously as in other common sales channels like radio, outdoor or print advertising. After all, people visit social networks to communicate and share interesting information, so aggressive and intrusive marketing is out of favor there. Many experts adhere to the opinion that the ratio of entertainment content to the commodity one, branding or selling one should be 80/20.
Despite social media’s ability to work perfectly for sales, here as much as anywhere the rule “everything has a season” applies: knowledge comes first, followed by the trust and sales, all according to the funnel system. That’s not to forget the aftersales experience (work with feedbacks, loyalty). Unfortunately, often lacking in due academic training, the small and medium businesses are eager to sell immediately; when they fail, they give up on the channel, which, given the proper arrangements, would bring them many orders.
The Social Media Examiner’s research also proves that social networks need some time before the sale. The chart below shows the correlation between the “experience” of businesses in social media and their agreement that social networks facilitated them in increasing sales.
Mistake #3. Focusing on one social network
By placing content on one social network, you actually put all your eggs in one basket, and you can get left in the dust. A social media outlet can be blocked at any time, as has happened with LinkedIn in Russia in 2016, or VKontakte and Odnoklassniki in Ukraine in 2017.
The question is, what should a blogger (or advertiser) do in this world? The answer comes from the Russian science-fiction writer and a popular blogger Leonid Kaganov:
“As I have said many times, I can see the only solution in electronic cosmopolitanism (not to be confused with the common one). That is to give up considering yourself a serf (or citizen) of just one online service, and use all the available ones. Are they cutting their throats, trying to win you over to their side? Get over them, all of them, and be at once everywhere.”
Moreover, using automated post scheduling services (PublBox will assist you) to ensure your presence on all popular social media is as easy as a pie.
Mistake #4. Lack of skills, time and attention
Everyone is sure he can edit posts with pictures getting lots of likes just by standing on his head. Except that personal life and work are a bit different. The SMM-specialists are valuable not only for their skills in writing and picking up pictures; smart work with social media is a combination of creativity, marketing, analytics, experience, and correct experiment, and all this under the pressure of budget, and (for small and medium-sized businesses) of time.
The Social Media Examiner’s research for 2015 shows statistics in terms of the time spent by businesses on social media weekly. For sure, it all depends on the adopted strategy and posting frequency, team experience and process automation, but just calculate in advance who will spend these 3-5-10 hours weekly on editing, designing and placing posts, answering comments and inviting new followers, and when will they do it? So, what are some automation tools to reduce these costs?
Do you know what the best posting time to cover the maximum audience is? Do you understand why there are never any comments on your posts, and how to make them appear? How many times a week is it best to post, to avoid losing the attention of readership, and still not bother them? Some answers are offered in our articles.
Mistake #5. Fuckups and responses to them
Lack of skills, among other things, can lead to serious reputational risks, i.e. once is enough to give a wrong answer, to fail to log out of the brand account, to make a mistake in the posted text, and you will have to think about an anti-crisis strategy. Unfortunately, the negative spreads across social media even faster than pets.
Case in point is Blackberry’s SMM staff, which made a couple of mistakes at once: they posted from a competitor’s phone and did not quickly remove their post, drawing ridicule from technical editions.
Mistake #6. Pace
The content on social media is rapidly becoming outdated. A tweet with a link to the best post of the month will be buried in a stream of other tweets for a couple of minutes, and a message on Facebook will sink to the bottom of the news feed in a couple of hours. In addition, you should be alert all the time, promptly answering comments and responding to criticism.
Assess whether you are ready for the pace of social media. For example, during Old Spice’s advertising campaign “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like,” the frontman of which was Isaiah Mustafa, the video gained over 43 million views on YouTube. The interest was enormous, the questions poured down immediately, and Mr. Mustafa answered more than 180 questions from the audience during 3 days.
Moreover, a good newsbreak today can turn into an adverse one tomorrow. Always be mindful of the background events when posting, so not to get into hot water; also, to avoid being on this list of unmindful brands and companies.
As serious as the risks may seem, the advantages of social media can hardly be overestimated. Unfortunately, no matter how wary you are, some risks will remain at the mercy of the “human factor.” In our PublBox service, we have tried to minimize all possible troubles and make working with social media easy and friendly, even for those who are just starting out in this area.
Therefore, if you want to slice and dice SMM tricks and learn how to make your public accounts selling, we suggest you complete our training, after which even recognized professionals will want you for their colleague.