Marketers take social as a given these days and yet we all tend to make our share of “critical” mistakes often. There are multiple ways in which the crime is committed.
Here are 4 reasons why your social media efforts are failing:
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1) Stereotyping- Pinterest is only for women: Maybe it is the fact that men tend to project that Pinterest is photos and thus only a woman oriented network. But the stereotyping and generalizations usually makes no sense. Plenty of websites (from business topics to news to career) drive a lot of their traffic via Pinterest. There’s no reason to believe it won’t work even before you try and analyze it. But many people tend to ignore facts over their personal biases
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2) Cynicism- Twitter doesn’t work in Germany (or abc): Of course there’s truth and sensibility in choosing the most relevant networks for your business or site. But apart from traffic & clicks, a large part of a content plan is to build brand recall. Twitter enables brand recall, and is allowing us to, for instance build connections & relationships, because (believe it or not!) many other cultures *are* active on Twitter. For an international company, this is critical. While analyzing which networks work best, it is important to see beyond traffic. Although, organic traffic needs long time investment & building time- it’s not something that comes up in a day- irrespective of the network.
3) Paid Experience- the only way Facebook works is when you pay: Unless you are God. No. Facebook works when you give the community what they are looking for. Paid adverts and campaigns do help get you the community in the first place (in terms of likes and fans) but they rarely facilitate engagement. Engagement comes by providing the most relevant, contextual content.
4) Perfectionism- you can’t make mistakes- You will. And the way to deal with them is learning for the future, not hiding them, and accepting them. Once we made a small error when we wrote down the ‘date’ in our meta text different from what the data referred to. We posted it on Facebook & noticed the error. Of course to avoid the error, we had to somehow change it. While one way could have been to ignore it (and cause confusion in the reader group), or repost (and not confirm the change), we reposted with the small error message. This may seem so normal and yet, honestly at that time we were quite unsure. Because as a company you are somehow not expected to make errors. But companies work with real people too. And real people can make mistakes. We have a well written social media & content plan. In spite of that, we can make mistakes. And we are humbled by them.
3 ways to act when your social media efforts are failing
1) Test, fail, try again– do not believe in mere stereotyping or previous experiences. Use data to challenge what you feel.
2) If you are making errors accept them and rectify them- I didn’t mention it above, but the feeling of accepting a mistake is far more humbling, human and somehow ‘feels right’. Our small correction led to no shitstorm or lack of reach- in fact only a funny comment that we were happy to answer. We are happy to be human
3) Engagement does not come from Hashtags or automation: It comes from being present, and sharing the most relevant content.
Hopefully, our human instincts can help us remain real and human. Companies of the future and on social will need to be human to remain relevant.
Originally published here
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