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Social Media Marketing Mistakes

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I've written a lot lately on social media marketing and how to use it in your marketing strategy, but I must admit, lately, I've become annoyed. There are so many companies, and when I say companies, I mean both the large companies as well as the soloprenuer out there that are beginning to think social media marketing is about getting rich quick, or it's the quick fix to small marketing budgets that will pull them through the recession with little or no effort.

Stop it! Social media is about interaction, and if I've said this once, I've said it at least a hundred times: social media is about interacting! When you interact, you create relationships; when you create these relationships, you create opportunities to share your products and services. This doesn't happen overnight. It takes time, consistency, and a genuine interest in the creation and nurturing of those relationships. If you aren't willing to do that, then hire a consultant that will do it for you; and if you aren't willing to do that, then don't do it at all.

There is not a standard list of rights and wrongs when it comes to social media, but there is one thing that is constant: no matter what industry you are in, do it badly and you will destroy your reputation within the social media realm. You can save your reputation by minding your manners.

Social Media Marketing No-Nos

  1. It's not all about you, interact.  Get to know others; don't just try to sell and promote your products. It won't work.

  2. Spamming is not ok, ever. It's true that spamming is becoming a problem in the social media networks, and we are being required to weed through it, just like we do in our email inboxes. Don't spam followers; if they didn't ask for it, don't send it. It's that simple! Permission marketing is key.

  3. Inconsistency will lead to failure. You must be consistent when it comes to using social media. Participating once a month or once a week just won't get the results you desire.

  4. Don't be a social media snob. Obviously social marketing is about being social; be willing to learn from others, and this isn't just about others in your industry.

  5. Want followers?  You will have to be a follower. Just like you can't open a storefront and think that customers will just show up, you cannot sign up and start off in social media thinking everyone is just going to come and follow you. You must be a follower. Social marketing isn't about flying solo, participate.
It's important to realize that social media marketing does work, but as with any marketing strategy, there are the core pieces of that strategy that you must implement. You must find the right social media marketing vehicles that will work for you and your industry, as well as design the campaigns that will present you with the results that you desire. It is a low to no-cost marketing option, but you will need to invest your time. If you are not willing to do that, consider selecting another marketing option or outsourcing your social media marketing with a company that can help you create and implement your social media marketing strategy. If you decide to outsource, just be sure to select a company or a consultant that has an idea of what they are doing.
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