One of the most important and beneficial steps you can take to gain exposure and market well is to use social media. Facebook, Instagram and other outlets are smart ways to increase your reach, but there are times when social media use could actually cause significant harm and complications for a company. Committing certain social media mistakes can lead to damage to the reputation of a company, loss of customers and the need to do major damage control. Fortunately, costly missteps are easy to avoid when you are aware of pitfalls and know how to step around them.
Companies often pay the price when they choose to attack other businesses, commenters, followers and others. Going into attack mode is rarely prudent. When involved in a social medial dispute or when there is the need to speak up, do so in a way that is informative and professional, not malicious or aggressive. You can walk the tightrope between defending your interests and saying something you may regret by choosing your words carefully and refusing to engage in name-calling.
It is also a mistake to post things that are inappropriate or could be perceived as insensitive to others. If you have doubts about the way another person may perceive your words, it’s probably best not to post. It is surprising how many companies and social media influencers say unwise, offensive or inappropriate things, only to have to walk back on their statements, apologize for their words and try to make amends.
Common social media mistakes also include failing to understand who you are trying to reach. When you do not know your target audience, your posts may be all over the place but fail to land anywhere. Narrow down your goals for your business’s use of social media, and develop your strategy around who you actually want to reach. With a little consideration and planning, you can avoid social media mistakes and carve out a strong following and presence on various platforms you choose to use.
By Meagan Kerlin for Vertu Marketing LLC