Doesn’t the gal in my post image look super sad? I was pretty sure it was because she wasn’t getting the results she wanted from her social media efforts… and she is bummed. So that’s why I picked that photo. Anyway.
I know that you all hustle really hard with your social media efforts. You put in a ton of time to say the right things in your updates and captions, to find the right photos, respond to comments, and interact with others. Still, even though you are doing a lot of social media RIGHT, there could be a few things that are overshadowing all of your good efforts. Here I have outlined six of the most common mistakes people make that prevent them from blowing up the news feed.
Ugh. This one is a killer. Probably more than people realize. I wish I had some fancy statistics to put here, but I don’t. Just trust me. You can not build an engaged, adoring social media community on any platform when you don’t show up consistently. When you post every day, you will see new followers and watch engagement kick up a notch each day. When you don’t, you won’t see it, and be more likely to throw in the towel. Most people give up too soon and think that social media “doesn’t work,” when in reality, they just needed to give it a little more time. Posting every day builds momentum!When you don't post consistently, you are more likely to quit because you don't see momentum. #socialmedia Click To Tweet
Being Too Salesy
If I had a dollar for every, “check out my page,” “buy today,” or “leave me your email to buy” I’ve seen… well, I wouldn’t need to write this blog post and have my own business! When you walk down the street, would you want people jumping out at you shouting, “buy this now!” No, you wouldn’t… but we do it all the time on social media! We jump in front of people and tell them to “just buy it” without building a relationship with them. Let me tell you… social media may be free, but it’s freaking noisy. There are so many businesses on social media, all trying to do the same thing… sell more stuff. We can all sell more stuff by actually “selling” less.
Not Being Valuable or Helpful
Similar to being too “salesy” above, but it’s just as bad to be all about yourself. “This is me, this is me doing this, this is me doing that…”
Basically if your social media account wasn’t your own, and it was the account of a total stranger, would you enjoy reading or looking at it? Does it add any value to someone’s life? There are so many ways to add value. We follow people and companies for all different reasons, including:
- To be entertained
- To learn something
- To be inspired
- To get help
- To appear smarter or superior to our peers
- The list goes on…
But do you help your customer with any of those things?
Low Quality Content
You might have the best idea or product in the world, but if you don’t put much effort in to your content (content = the stuff you produce like blog posts, social media posts, podcasts, etc.) you are going to be in your own way. Content can be “low quality” for a variety of reasons… crummy images, poor grammar, articles or blog posts that aren’t well researched or don’t really offer value, etc. Make sure you are putting effort in to everything that you send out… and if you don’t have time to make it your best, don’t post it until you do have the time to make it your best.
I’m not a photography or graphic design expert, but there is a ton of free information out there if you just take the time to search it out. When in doubt, keep things clean and simple. Stick to a palette of a couple of colors and fonts. With Instagram, use the same filters over and over. When sharing links that aren’t your own, make sure that the site you are sending people to is something you are proud to share.
Not Actively Seeking New Followers
The old, “build it and they will come” adage simply isn’t true here. It’s too noisy out there in our online world. Sure, if you are an early adopter and you are the FIRST someone on a platform, you may be able to build a huge audience just because you are one of a kind… but generally, it’s not going to happen.
Once you’ve committed to showing up on social media every day and sharing valuable, high-quality content, you need to actively pursue new followers. On Instagram, this means using 30 targeted hashtags on each post, and liking/commenting/interacting with your potential customer every day.
Not Valuing the Audience You Have
Finally, if you don’t love the people you DO have, you aren’t building an active and engaged community. Respond to comments, visit their feeds to like and comment, and be sure to tell them over and over again that you appreciate their support. When your fans can feel your love, they are much more likely to tell someone else about you. When you ask them to tag their friends or share your post, they’ll do it!
In order to really experience sustained success on social media, you need a strategy! But a “strategy” doesn’t have to be scary and complicated. See below to download my social media quick start guide which will walk you through 7-steps to creating a solid social media foundation for your business!
I’m not asking anyone to publicly admit their mistakes here, but are you guilty of any of these? What would you add to the list?
Molly Marshall teaches small business owners and online entrepreneurs how to systematically and simply grow a profitable online presence through social media. Get your FREE 2018 Instagram Strategy Guide now!
2018 Instagram Strategy Guide
What will you do different in 2018 that will help you stand out, build your brand and increase your authority on Instagram? The answers are in this free, 11-page guide.