I hate to be a Negative Nancy, but one of my earliest blog posts touched on a few of these points, and I think it’s important to address them further. It’s important to talk about it because once we know what’s wrong, we can fix it and improve. Here are the mistakes I see small businsses make frequently when using social media for “marketing” purposes.
Not responding to questions or comments ASAP
I once had a conversation with a business owner who had the audacity to say that people don’t use social media for customer service. That if they have a question, they just pick up the phone. This may have been true a year ago, but not anymore! People are using social media for customer support, and they expect you to as well. 50% (HALF!) of consumers expect to find service and support on Facebook. And 47% (ALMOST HALF!) of consumers expect a response to an online service request in one hour.
So not only do you need to respond to your inquiries, you need to respond fast!
Running Facebook promotions incorrectly (or never)
Or not running promotions at all. Let me just get this out there: If you are going to run a promotion on Facebook, you MUST read the rules first. If you have questions, consult a Facebook expert. If you have legal questions, consult a lawyer. And let me just say (for the record), it’s BETTER to run a promotion through a third-party application. They have features that make it easy for sharing/going viral and keeping the promotion organized.
Now that we have that cleared up, if you are not running promotions, you ought to be. 67% of consumers expect special treatment when they like a brand on Facebook. Don’t reward just anyone; reward your loyal fans, the people who have made your business what it is today. Don’t have loyal fans? Promotions can help build them. But you MUST put some strategy behind your promotion or you’ll just get a bunch of people who aren’t interested in your business (just the prize).
Just posting for posting’s sake
I’m sure you have heard the adage, if you don’t have anything interesting to say, don’t say anything at all. The same concept applies for social media. There are many different things that go into perfecting a Facebook post. Here is a whole separate blog post about posting best practices, because it’s so important! In this blog post I address timing, brand voice, relevance, entertainment value, originality, promotion, and two-way communication.
Following just about anyone on Twitter
Do you really think that 10 year old from Florida tweeting about Justin Bieber is going to become a customer of your New Jersey business? No? Then why did you follow her? Sure, numbers are nice. But relevant prospects are nicer. Target people on Twitter that are local and interested in your industry. Even if that means you only have a couple hundred followers, you have a better shot at getting some business.
These are just a couple things I’ve noticed, what about you?