You Might Be Using Social Media the Wrong Way If …

Anyone can sign up for a social media account, but it doesn't mean you are capable of using it for business.

Anyone can sign up for a social media account and understand its general premise. Does that make you (or a member of your team) capable of using it for business? Like anything in business, social media (done right) requires extensive experience and understanding of people, some technology and — most importantly — marketing.

Primarily, many social media users fail in one of two areas: understanding that social media fits into the larger part of a company’s overall marketing goals, and the ability to see correlations between activities on social media and quantifiable ROI.

You — or your social media marketing ‘pro’ — might be using social media the wrong way if:


  • You don’t measure ROI.

    Utilize basic tools, like Facebook analytics, to understand audience interests. Notice which content generates more likes, clicks, and reach. Then, use tools like Google Analytics to see how the traffic is converting on your website. If you want to get a bit more robust, try simple, yet powerful, analytics tools like Simplymeasured.com to stay connected with your audience and keep them interested.

  • You call yourself a ‘guru’.

    Keep your titles professional, people. Using a term like ‘guru’ usually screams that you’re a refugee from another industry and don’t really know what you’re doing. Anybody who has been in the marketing industry wants to create a professional appearance. Let others call you a guru if they’d like.

  • You’re not collaborating.

    Social media marketing is most efficient and effective when it’s coordinated with your company’s branding, email marketing, advertising, and other various marketing efforts. For instance, your online marketing efforts can help drive social media community growth by linking back to your company’s social networks. Alternatively, you can gain potential leads that convert into sales by driving traffic back to the website through content marketing. If you create original content and leverage other marketing efforts, you will become a social media rock star.

  • You’re not identifying key influencers or competitors.

    Social media is a great platform for identifying potential allies and competitors. Keep an eye on competitors to see what they’re up to. Add them to a private list on Twitter and don’t follow them, because then they’ll know. Use tools like Followerwonk.com to identify key influencers driving the conversations in your industry. Interact with influencers and involve them in various social media programs. Soon you’ll have people adding you to their secret Twitter lists.

  • You use a tweet-by-tweet strategy.

    It’s easy to sign up for a social media account. The real magic happens when you have a strategy. To create a one, you must learn what your audience needs, through analytics, and implement a process that drives measurable ROI. With this strategy, you can plan social media initiatives (like Facebook contests). Ensure they are successful by planning and implementing flawlessly. If you’re running a social media program, but you don’t know what you’re going to accomplish, you are doing it wrong.

  • You don’t build relationships or listen.

    Social media is all about relationships — that’s why it’s called “social” media.  It will improve engagement, encourage brand advocacy, and keep customers happy. To build key relationships, listen to your fans’ needs. They will often do some of the work for you, but you need to treat them right. Some businesses talk too much on social media. This comes across as spam and fans tune out. If a proverbial tree (your content) falls in the woods (news feed) but nobody cares, did it really happen?

This article has been edited and condensed.

Andy Karuza is the CEO of Brandbuddee.com and a long-time social media consultant with experience in Enterprise, Startup and local small business. Also an active nightlife, fashion, entrepreneur and charity community member. Connect with @AndyKaruza on Twitter.


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