You order an item online and it takes way more time to arrive than it should. Plus, a few items are missing in the package. Frustrated, you take to the vendor's Facebook channel to voice your concerns and expect to be compensated.
And despite repeated prodding, there is complete radio silence at the other end.
The experience didn't feel good did it? You think maybe this business doesn't care about you - how you trusted it to give you a good experience and it shattered this trust instead. So you do what any frustrated individual would - you vow never to order anything from here again and hit the "unlike" button.
For social media strategists, there is a lesson to be learned here. A social media marketing strategy can eventually falter with a few unlikes and negative comments.
As a business owner, social media gives you limited chances to make a good impression. How you take advantage of these chances might make your business or break it.
The proof is in these stats:
• 71% of users who have a positive social media experience with a brand are likely to recommend it - Ambassador
• According to a study, hardly 20% of social media posts hardly generate any emotional reaction on social media - Havas Media
• 42% of Twitter users expect to be expect a business to respond to their inquiries within an hour - Ambassador
As a social media marketer, the best way to improve your social media strategy is to first find why it falters in the first place. Here are some mistakes that you might have overlooked:
1 - Being careless with negative feedback
If you have ever dealt with a salesperson, you wouldn't expect him to become defensive when you have a complaint or be careless about your concerns.
So why would your followers on social media?
Keep in mind, whenever anyone says something negative about you on social media, the rest of your followers can see them. And they will be as interested to see how you respond.
For businesses, this is a nail-biting scenario. But it is totally avoidable. Here is how:
• Put someone competent behind the wheel: Experienced professionals like social media experts will take an unbiased approach to the negativity and know that being careless about it serves no purpose.
For example, they know that being unresponsive to comments like "your service sucks! I want my money back" doesn't really help anyone. A well worded reply on the other hand, helps both your reputation and appeases rising tempers.
To illustrate, your reply should go something like, "We are sorry that you had a bad experience. Can you tell us exactly what happened so we can make amends?" This way, you are more likely to ease frustrated customers.
• Become alert to mentions by using online tools: It's easy to forget about something you don't encounter every day. Comments on social media are the same. You can't track every one of them. No one inboxes them to you and there is no guarantee that followers will tag you.
To keep track of all comments, you can use tools like Google Alerts which notify you when anyone uses your keywords on their social media fields.
2 - Using social media management tools to schedule same posts on all platforms
Social media management tools allow marketers to post the same content on several social media platforms at once. Many businesses use it to schedule posts. And it has worked for them too, freeing up the time they need to focus on other tasks.
But oftentimes, people use these tools as a shortcut to schedule same posts on several platforms. It's a lazy tactic and shows that you don't care how your content is received by audiences.
Keep in mind, what works on Facebook or Twitter won't necessarily work on LinkedIn. Every social media platform was created with specific target audiences in mind. A 140 character tweet, for example, won't sit well with LinkedIn audiences who expect more comprehensive posts.
Use tools to schedule optimized posts
To make the most of social sharing tools, improve your social media strategy first. Take the time to learn about the unique capabilities of each platform. Limit yourself to two or three platforms if that is what it takes. For example, posts that are rich in imagery are more successful on Google+.
Hootsuite and HubSpot are two of the many social media management tools that you can use to automate posts and even see which channels are driving the most engagement. In addition to automated content sharing, these platforms also offer free online social marketing training courses that can help you make the most of each platform like optimizing your posts for different social media channels.
3 - Skimping on social share buttons
Business owners usually reserve their best content for their websites. Content like informative blogs, for example, establish them as experts in their niches.
It also give visitors a chance to stay longer on these websites. Perhaps they would like to look around to see what else is on offer?
Unfortunately, you could feature content that everyone would love to share - but if visitors don't have any way to share it, it isn't going to get the exposure you are looking for.
To make this work for you:
• Make your social sharing work on mobile: Statistics show that over 15% of tweet mentions are from the tweet buttons that are embedded on your site. This also proves to show that people share a lot on mobile devices.
• Tools to create social share buttons for WordPress: You can use online tools to create customized social share buttons for different audiences.
When selecting appropriate plugins, a good rule of thumb is to select those that allow you more freedom in the type of social share buttons you can create for different platforms.
For example, to improve engagement with mobile audiences you can tell your developers to download WordPress plugin tools like Simple Share Buttons Adder to create customized share buttons for your web or mobile audience and add them to all of your social media posts. Another plugin tool is Addthis.
• Have a social budget: If anything is worth doing, it's worth doing right. Tools like Simple Share Button Adder are free to download and use. But if you really want to make your share buttons shine, it's best to have a budget for it and use it to purchase their pro or premium packages. These offer more customization options and retail for around $10 to $100 dollars.
• Select shareable content wisely: If you want to take advantage of social media, your content must be something that people would want to share. Image rich posts, for example, are shared a lot more than text-based content.
To illustrate, consider infographics. Studies show that infographics are shared and "liked" on social media 3 times more than any other type of content.
Use tools to keep yourself alert to negative comments and rely on professional help. Avoid taking the lazy way out by ditching the auto posting strategy. Pay attention to the type of content you post, how your followers share content on your social platforms of choice and optimize it for mobile to expand your reach.
It's a mistake to regard social as a quick and easy solution to market your brand. It takes time, effort and patience. Learning about the mistakes and pitfalls can help you avoid them.