Journalists, Public Figures, Broadcasters, Artists, Musicians & Influencers who use it properly have gained a valuable marketable edge that has garnered them bigger contracts & greater opportunities.
(See my previous post: Change Your Name)
Understand that Facebook was originally created for college students to get to know each other. Now it’s one of the premier tools to reaching customers.
Facebook & all forms of Social Media must be considered as advertising, much like TV, Radio, Print, SEO, SEM, Billboards etc. However it is different and some companies & brands are missing the boat.
imho: The 5 Most Common Mistakes Being Made by Companies & Brands Are:
1: Failure to recognize what SOCIAL media is.
Bottom line - It’s media that is SOCIAL. Key word there is ’SOCIAL’.
What are the users (your customers) posting up there? The majority of it is happy times, fun stuff, pictures from parties, something new, renewed connections etc.
Think about the last time you were at a party. You were chatting with some friends and all the sudden somebody barges in and says “I can lower your bills, wanna know how?”
I hope that would probably never happen, but if it did - you’d quickly dismiss them (the proverbial ‘unfollow’)
You also have to realize that Social Media platforms do not care about the advertiser nearly as much as they care about the user. The user is the basis for their source of funding. The more information they can extract from the user, the more they can customize and improve the experience for the user, the better the results it can deliver to the advertiser. This method of thinking is inclusive of the mindset that “If the advertiser has success with the qualified leads we are sending them, then they’ll spend more money with us.” So they do care about the advertiser, but again - not nearly as much as they care about the individual users ongoing experience with the platform.
(Don’t believe me? Why then would you have the option to turn off an advertisers offer to your personal feed? Imagine if you could do that with television or radio? - oh wait, YouTube, Netflix, Pandora, Spotify… the challenge is on for everyone to put out great quality content.)
2: Failure to implement a strategic plan for all social media.
This is inclusive but not limited to:
- Not setting up the official pages and managing them on a daily basis
- Not getting official pages verified
- Not encouraging staff & vendors to utilize the official pages
- Not planning the content: both topic & time to post.
- Not recognizing the unique purposes of each platform - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkdIn, SnapChat, Pinterest, even YouTube are all sensationally different and should be approached differently.
These are all very important and critical steps - one of the most critical is to actually own the page.
It kills me when I hear “Oh yea, “former employee” or “former employee’s child" used to do the social media for us, but they left and we don’t have the passwords or log in.
**Note: Managing a page does not mean posting on an hourly or daily basis. However it does mean your checking on what is resonating with your followers, reading posts, and liking posts that are relevant to your page or cause from your official page.
3: Failure to budget proper amount of time & money.
If you don’t spend the time building the plan and supporting the plan with a budget, then you’ll always be disappointed with the results.
Imagine making a poor quality tv or radio commercial on the fly with no script or plan and posting it to a stations upload site, but there’s no purchased air-time behind it - what happens to that spot?
Or even worse: that same poorly made spot WITH a budget behind it.
If it’s unwatchable or unlistenable, then people (your customers) will quickly dismiss it as well as your company or services. (They can even block your company from ever entering their feed)
4: B.U.I. - Boosting Under the Influence.
You’ve crafted a relevant, excellent quality post. People are starting to engage, respond, share and like. Wow - This feels great! Sure I’ll have another!
It’s been scientifically proven - that people get a dopamine hit or an endorphin rush every time they see that magical Notification, or that thumbs up, or now the “WOW” emoticon.
If you haven’t planned for that "designated driver” - you can very easily get into the drivers seat, push that Boost button from your mobile device and literally launch your funding into thin air!
5: Failure to Recognize The Changes.
All social media platforms are constantly changing. Their algorithms and the way they serve content to it’s users is an ever evolving process that is always subject to change.
Facebook serves up information to users differently now than it did 6 months ago. Twitter has changed to allow 140 Characters of content with photo and video within the past month.
Instagram is rolling out a new way it serves info and pushes posts to the top of the users feed.
Realize that Lack of engagement and lack of interest are the 2 things feared most by social media platforms (ps: advertisers and businesses are the biggest parts of that problem) - Social Media Platforms change constantly in order to improve the user experience - and they don’t even tell you!
"Chewbacca Mom” is only one of the millions of posts that went up on May 19, 2016. It was because of personal connections that Candace Payne already had (her friends) that it was initially shared amongst her friends.
It then went national & international because of the content:
pure joy, breath-taking exhilaration and infectious laughter.
Millions (including myself) absolutely loved it because it was genuine!
Understand and give credit where it is due: Kohl's response was perfect!
It was also calculated and planned. Kohl's Social Media Plan and infrastructure was not created and implemented on May 19, 20 or 21, 2016. It has been years in the making backed up by a significant time and money investment and boy did it pay off huge! (Great Job Kohl's!)
PLAN - Businesses, no matter what size, must have a strategic plan and it's critical to stick to that plan!
::It’s imperative to pre-set your target audience demographics and save that profile in the business manager. Take the time to learn about the audience that is responding and what the common factors are between those people. Regularly reviewing the results from posts is an excellent practice. It will teach you about your customer, both the current and the potential.
ON-GOING TRAINING - It’s important that at least 1 member of your team (and really it should be every member including the directs) should be invested in and encouraged to keep up with on-going training.
::Podcasts are an excellent source for this kind of ‘continuing education’. There are a number that I listen too including Marketing Over Coffee, Duct Tape Marketing, and Social Media Marketing (from Social Media Examiner). Paid subscriptions are worth their weight in gold as well (always check reviews). I am a subscriber to a paid-service called The Social Media Marketing Society. It’s is an incredible value, loaded with content, how-to’s, tutorials, forums, and presently at the time of this post: You can’t join it. BUT - you can sign up to be notified the next time it’s open for new members.
HIRE A COACH -or- TRAINER - Many businesses are doing this via independent consultants or contractors with per-diem or on-going retainer agreements.
::Before hiring them, get to know them. Be sure who you contract has an excellent track record and check their references. This is not to be confused with a content generating company. There are a plenty of those out there that do excellent work, but let’s face it: the best content is going to come from directly you and your staff. A Coach -or- Trainer will help you to optimize the great content and posts you're presenting to your followers with consideration of timing, messaging, tagging and targeting.
Remember: This takes time.
If you have no social media plan at this point, or completely absent on social media platforms, it will take some time for you to build up that credibility and establish your position within the ever-changing social media universe, but it will certainly be worth it in the long run - providing you have a strategy and great content!