Don’t fall into these traps if you want your brand to succeed on social media, warns Leigh-Chantelle, who has built her Viva La Vegan Google Plus community to over 100,000 followers.
1. Unrealistic expectations
People have too high or unrealistic expectations of what social media can do for them. You think that if you share something it’s going go viral immediately, but that just doesn’t happen anymore.
Also, a lot of people think social media is free, because it used to be. Five years ago you used to get a lot of interaction by not paying for advertising online by just sharing content on your Facebook page in particular.
But now only five or maximum 10 per cent of people who follow you on your Facebook page will actually see what you post.
If you’ve spent the past four years trying to get 10,000 likes on Facebook, you need to keep in mind that you have to pay to be seen on social media now, particularly Facebook and I’m sure other platforms will follow suit.
2. Buying Facebook likes and Twitter followers
Organically it takes time to build likes and followers, so it’s tempting to buy them to make your page look popular.
But just as you have to put in the work to write a good book, make your business successful, make your relationships successful, you also have to put in the work to make your social media channels successful.
Buying fans may make you look good to start with. You could have 20,000 in a week. But
then they’ll start to drop off quite a lot. So if you buy 20,000 fans, it doesn’t mean you’re going to have 20,000 fans still there in a month’s time, particularly if other platforms follow Instagram’s lead and purge fake accounts or those set up specifically to like thousands of pages. It’s not a good look for you if you suddenly lose thousands of likes or followers.
3. Broadcasting poor quality content with no interaction
Keep in mind, social media is about being social. It’s creating the interaction with other people. Focus on this more than on how many followers you have, because even if you have a high number of followers, if you are getting little to no engagement, it doesn’t look good for your brand.
Don’t just broadcast your content without interacting with other people’s content, or not replying to comments on your own posts.
With so many people who simply post and run, social media platforms have become overrun with content that doesn’t matter. Before posting something, ask yourself: Is it really beneficial to anyone? Will people get something out of it? If so, pay to have it boosted.
Create your own content, whether that means taking your own photos of your products, creating your own infographics, writing your own articles.
The more you create high-quality content that can’t be found elsewhere and you’re sharing this regularly – at least once a week – then people will come to you because you are seen as someone who knows what they’re talking about in your industry.
Over time people will trust you and come to you for the things they can’t get anywhere else. They will share your content and bring more fans and followers to you.
Social media is all about cultivating relationships. Those brands who consistently put in the effort to create excellent content and interact genuinely with their followers will see the most success in the long run.