Toxic Things You Do on Social Media That Are Killing Your Sales
Marketers everywhere swear to how they are going to increase investment in social media in 2015. New studies are released every other day that talk about how social media is such a critical tool in every marketer’s toolkit. Courses abound online – both free and paid – that claim to turn you into a social media wizard in a matter of minutes (or so it seems!). In short, social media makes the world go round for most marketers today.
With this perspective, I am now going to assume that you have a social media presence for your business already or are planning to launch one in the near future. While you may have managed your personal social media accounts with amazing flair for years, marketing your business on social media is a completely different ball game altogether. What works on personal social media accounts can sometimes terribly backfire for a brand.
Here’s a sampling of some of the most unpardonable faux pas that brands commit on social media – stuff you should run a mile from, right away!
1. Getting aggressive with customers
Social media is a place where you bond with your fans and followers, become friends with them, NOT get into fights with them. Yes, it’s very easy for users to vent their anger or frustration with your brand on social media. However, replying back in the same vein to a customer, however abusive they may get is a terrible, terrible idea.
Your job as the brand custodian is to pacify angry customers, soothe any ruffled feathers and maintain your brand impression with the rest of your fans. A shouting match with an irate customer has no place in this mix.
2. Posting irrelevant stuff
Without exception, EVERY SINGLE piece of advice regarding social media marketing anywhere on the web talks about posting content that is interesting and relevant to your audience. If your fans don’t care about what you post; they’ll lose interest in your brand, engagement rates dip, top of mind recall falls, brand usage falls. Don’t get trapped into this domino effect of evaporating attention spans and dropping sales figures. Avoid irrelevant content like the plague.
3. Posting the same things over and over again
What’s worse than posting irrelevant content on your social media pages? Posting irrelevant content over and over again!
Nobody likes a bore. Try actively to NOT be one on your social media. You may argue that there’s only so much new content that you can create about your brand every day. Agreed. If you really cannot create fresh content, then curate interesting content that other brands have created and repost it with their permission. Another option is to run contests or ask questions to your fans on days when you’re running a tad low on original content. Anything but reposting the same content repeatedly. If in spite of all this, you still insist on reusing your old content, make sure you repurpose it – change its format, change the tone, change the platform it’s posted on – basically breathe new life into it and then repost it on social media.
4. The Dead Social Media Page
Many newbie business owners are carried away by their enthusiasm and end up creating accounts for their brand across multiple social media platforms. Many businesses manage to stay on top of their social media presence and keep their accounts active and their fans engaged. However, there’s a substantial portion of businesses that get so caught up with everyday stuff to focus on four or five different social media platforms. The result? The dead social media page.
Avoid this misstep by initiating your brand’s social media presence first on platforms that are most relevant to your target audience. Once you start with one platform and start building traction on it, then you can move on to other platforms that interest your users e.g. if you are a women centric brand, you could begin by focusing on Pinterest and then slowly expand to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn – in that order.
5. Being too ‘salesy’
How can focusing on sales in your social media posts adversely affect your sales? Isn’t that a paradox? Well, it is and for good reason. As, because social media is not a place where your fans come to shop. It’s a place where they come to connect with friends and family. If they follow you, then that’s an added bonus, not the prime purpose of them being on social media.
Avoid putting off your users with posts that constantly peddle your products and push some offer or another. It’s the most surefire way of making your fans lose interest in your brand for good.
6. Not responding to comments/queries
Don’t mistake social media for a soapbox to air your views. Far from being a soapbox, it is a platform for two-way dialogue between your brand and its users. So the next time the urge to keep bombarding fans’ timelines with just your communication comes over you; stop. Take a deep breath and instead check out the comments that users have left on your posts.
Reply to them individually and make them realize that you care about them. Answer queries regarding your products, tackle customer service requests and close any pending issues as soon as you possibly can. Social customer care has arrived, make sure you’re riding the wave.
7. Not dedicating at least an hour per day to social media
Social media is an extremely powerful tool that has the potential to offer you eyeballs, clicks, conversions and sales. However, all of this do not come by simply creating a social media account and sitting pretty. Like everything else, you need to put in the work to reap the rewards from social media. The savviest businesses have dedicated teams / individuals handling their social media accounts. If your budgets don’t permit you that luxury, at least make sure that you and your team devote at least one hour every single day on:
- Listening to conversations about your brand on social media
- Responding to customer queries and comments
- Creating, curating and posting content
- Tracking, measuring and analyzing the impact that social media has on your website traffic and conversions
Over to You
So these were my top picks on social media habits that can directly impact your sales. Does your experience involve any other such toxic habits? Share your thoughts, we’d love to hear from you!