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4 Common Mistakes Made by Small Businesses on Social Media

So, you have finally given up your hard-wearing battle against the digital age and made a social account for your business. The profile picture is up, you have four followers (all within the immediate family, your 14-year-old didn’t accept), and you are ready to blaze away as you picture yourself swimming in a tub full of cash amidst skyrocketing sales.

While it can bring success, social media may take a little more time and effort than you think. Here are some blunders you should steer clear of.

Forgetting the “social” in social media

There is nothing worse than a business that posts and engages with the life and soul of a broken shovel. When users engage with you online, it’s important to act like a human and treat them like one. This might seem easy when the positive vibes are flowing, but how you deal with negative comments and reviews can make or break your brand image. Check out our rundown of your legal considerations when it comes to social media.


Lack of direction

As this is somewhat of a grey area that depends on your goals, having a strategy on paper is something that many forget to consider. Try to keep a rough, reasonably consistent schedule and keep a healthy percentage of your posts relevant; while it’s okay to include some light-hearted content, don’t go posting videos of cats dressed like cowboys ten times a day. On the other hand, only promote your products or services with genuine, engaging content that isn’t an obvious and shameless plug.


Crowded houses and ghost towns

There is a delicate balance to achieve when it comes to quantity of content on social platforms. Too often we see businesses spewing forth crudely phrased posts that clog their page. On the other hand, pages that haven’t been updated in two months feel like a graveyard and can affect brand image. Stretching too thin may be part of the issue—while there are many different platforms to use, try to start off with one or two that are most popular with your target audience and build a campaign from there.


Poor quality and stagnation

Closely related to the previous point, forgetting to ‘keep it fresh’ is another mistake when engaging on social media. Consider the phrase engaging—appealing, drawing attention—and then step into the shoes of your followers. Why should they care about what you post? What separates you from competitors? If all you do is promote a service you offer 100 days in a row in posts riddled with spelling errors, chances are everyone will lose interest. Keep it interesting by changing it up with photos and videos, posing questions to your followers, discussing developments in the industry and anything else refreshing. It can also be helpful to ask a friend, co-worker or family member to lend a second to proof your content—even the most gifted writers need a second set of eyes to spot mistakes in their own work.


By Andrew Miller

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