6 Reasons You Might Be Failing At Social Media

Feb242016

6 Reasons You Might Be Failing At Social Media

Over the last decade, social media has quickly risen as a contender against traditional media such as television or radio—competing for the world’s attention. In fact, our time spent online using social media is expected to surpass television sooner than later given the vast adoption of smartphones and tablets in recent years.

Organizations have taken note, and social media has become a part of nearly every organization’s marketing and communications toolkit. But only few have mastered it. The ones left in the dust often ask me why they aren’t getting results on social media. Every organization is different, but it usually comes down to one or more of these reasons:

1. You’ve bitten off more than you can chew

Most marketers get the green light to move forward with social media at their organization and go out and sign up for every platform. You started strong, posting to each a few times but slowly stopped because you just don’t have the resources to keep up.

TIP! Pick one channel and do it really, really well. Post unique content frequently. Answer questions and create conversations. Once you’ve nailed this channel, consider adding more platforms to your arsenal one at a time.

2. You’re not posting often enough

Like most things in life, you get what you give to social media. To see a return on social media, you need to invest the time and resources into posting frequently enough to maintain a consistent presence with your followers.

TIP! Develop an editorial calendar to ensure that you’ve got enough content to maintain a consistent presence on your channel(s). An editorial calendar is a document that outlines the date, channel, content type and content/links for each post for 1-3 months in advance.

3. Your content isn’t unique

Social media is a very saturated landscape. You can’t break through the clutter with content that people have seen before. Simply sharing third-party content or writing paragraph-long posts increase your chances of being overlooked.

TIP! Develop 4-5 key content types that you’ll post on an ongoing basis and dedicate resources to developing creative copy and graphics that people will want to SHARE. Posts with images get 86% more likes, comments and shares than text only posts.

4. You post the same content to every channel

Think of social media like television. You watch MTV if you want to listen to music. You watch the Food network if you want to see cooking shows. The same thing applies to social media. They’re niche platforms that require unique content.

TIP! Think of who your audience is on every platform and develop content around each. For example, promote workplace culture and job opportunities on LinkedIn and share blog posts on Twitter.

5. All you do is talk about yourself

Creating content and just putting it out there isn’t going to work for you. Social media should be bi-directional, not a one-way conversation.

TIP! Use a tool like Hootsuite to search for conversations that relate to you and your business. Jump into a conversation and demonstrate your thought leadership by asking questions and sharing resources.

6. You expect results for free

Social media today is different than it was two years ago. Many social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have scaled back on what they’re willing to give companies for free—namely impressions. Without paid advertising, the typical post is seen by less than 5% of an organization’s followers.

TIP! Invest some of your marketing budget into sponsoring content to boost visibility and engagement. You have to pay for exposure, but social media remains one of the most cost effective and measurable advertising options in the marketplace.

Once you have the basics in place, consider developing a larger digital marketing strategy that looks beyond just social media. This process typically begins with identifying your organizational goals and narrowing your ideal customers or audiences into personas. From there, you can form a strategy that includes recommended channels, growth tactics, voice and tone, community management guidelines, and perhaps the most important component—a plan for measurement beyond counting your followers or likes.

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