By Kiesha Easley at Social Media Today:
Are you new to the social media world? Does the plethora of platforms and options make your head spin?
Maybe you just don’t know where to start, what to do, or what not to do.
This list will help you understand the frequently made mistakes of social media maintenance. If you can avoid these mistakes, you can save your time, money, and frustration.
*Note: If social media is something really new to you, then I suggest you start by reading these two articles: (7 Big Benefits of Social Media Beyond Traffic and Social Media: 5 Must-Have Tools for Bloggers).
1. Concentrating on one or too many social media platforms
Although the Facebook has become synonymous with social media, it is not the only network used for website promotion. To get more website traffic and more search engine results, you need to expand to other platforms. Google+ is your next best choice if you are short on time.
On the other hand, while you shouldn’t only concentrate on Facebook, maintaining too many platforms at the same time is very demanding. Many people who make this mistake quit entirely, because they find the social media results unrewarding. So start with a couple of networks and then expand to more when your blog grows organically. When this happens, you also won’t need to put in as much effort to maintain your networks.
2. Not optimizing your SEO
Besides the traffic benefits gained from social media networking, there are also some hidden SEO (search engine optimization) benefits. You can SEO your social media profile, boosting your presence in search engine results.
Simply treat your social media profile like you would treat your blog. Special attention should be given to the titles, URLs, and descriptions. Try to make what you say and share authentic.
3. Not using social media buttons
A secret to social media success is the iconic social media button. They should be embedded onto your website or blog in an easy-to-spot location.
I recommend you PURM:
- Place the Facebook “like” and Google+ “Add to Circles” buttons in the sidebar, above the fold.
- Use and position large social media buttons above the fold and in visible areas.
- Remember that readers may be using tablets to view your pages. They should, as easily as computer-users, be able to share your content. (Another reason to use large buttons)
- Make the Pinterest button available and configured correctly when you use an image.
4. Sharing content shouldn’t only from your blog
Unless you are Seth Godin or Danny Sullivan, the content you share shouldn’t only be from your blog. If you network and share content from other blogs or websites, you will actually get noticed more and get more followers.
Try also to follow the leaders in your niche; share their content continuously and interact with them by posting quality comments or mentioning them in your posts.
5. Following people incorrectly
All membership websites and blogs have rules, and social media networks are no exception. Don’t start adding and removing tons of people every day. I would say that adding 10 to 20 people a day on each social network is enough to grow your profile steadily and keep you under the radar at the same time.
If you are too aggressive, then you may get penalized. Facebook may not allow you to add new friends for 30 days; Twitter may suspend your account; Google+ may give you a notice. These penalties will only slow you down.
Many new users are excellent at following new people but not following back their already-loyal followers. If you don’t do them, then people will stop following you. This is why you see fluctuations in your followers count.
6. Not knowing the difference between a personal and business profile
Almost all social media networks, with the exception of Twitter, treat personal and business profiles differently. Facebook has the Facebook Business page, Google+ has the Google+ for business, and Pinterest recently introduced Pinterest for Business.
Your Facebook and Google+ personal accounts own your respective business accounts. First create your personal account; then your business account. Use your business profile to promote posts only from your website; use your personal profile to promote posts from other websites.
7. Going on either autopilot or manual mode
There are many tools that automate social media tasks, but this is not entirely recommended. Personal contact should be used where it’s needed. Social networking is not only about connecting but also about engaging. To find new customers and more followers, engage with them both offline and online.
On the other hand, you cannot do everything by yourself. If you are active on more than one network, you will need a lot of time to make posts, write comments, and engage with your followers. You should use a tool for some of those tasks.
8. Neglecting the fact that people may “Like” or “+1” your post without reading or visiting your blog
I have noticed that many times, when I post a URL from my blog onto Facebook, there is a large number of Facebook likes but not many visits to the article page. It is then important to use good thumbnails, catchy titles, and attractive descriptions. Also try to post when many people are online. These tips can make your post go viral.
Thumbnails are especially important. Many studies have shown that posts that use nice thumbnails will get more likes, tweets, pins, etc. So every time you want to post, make sure to accompany the post with an attractive thumbnail.
9. Not Advertising
Let’s say that you have 2000 fans on your Facebook business page. When you post something new, it will only be seen by approximately 200 people, or 10 percent of your fans. The easiest way to fix this issue is to advertise.
It’s good to know that if you want to get more fans, likes, tweets, followers, and 1+s, then you should utilize the platforms’ advertising options. Facebook has Facebook ads, Twitter haspromoted accounts and tweets(only available in the US), and Google+ has Adwords express platform. They are easy to use, they don’t cost much, and the results are very rewarding.
There is a common misconception that you are buying likes or tweets if you advertise. But really, you are just giving your posts a better chance of being seen. The likes and tweets still depend on the quality of your content.
10. Not using hash tags
A hashtag is the easiest way to follow a discussion on any platform. For example, during the NBA finals you can search “#nbafinals” on Twitter, Google+, or Facebook to stay informed about the latest stories.
To use hashtags, just type “#” before your keyword. For example the tweet for this post would look like:
Top 10 social media mistakes to avoid #socialmedia #socialmediamistakes
Social media is a very important component to the digital marketing campaign. It is an absolute must for every blogger or entrepreneur who wants to stay afloat in the competitive, online world.
Now that you have educated yourself with the ins and outs of social media networking, go out and get busy!