Facebook and other social media are powerful tools for effective marketing communications. But are you getting the results you’d like from your organization’s Facebook page? Be sure you’re not making these five common mistakes.
1. Too much selling. Are you providing a nonstop stream of boring sales messages? Or — are you providing interesting and informative content people want to read, such as helpful tips and news related to your product or service?
2. Not keeping up with site changes. Facebook in particular is notorious for changing features on their site, sometimes with little notice. Page layout, administrative features and analytics are but three of the major areas Facebook has recently changed for brand pages. Are you putting in the research time it takes to keep up with current and future changes, and are you taking advantage of new features as they become available?
3. Forgetting that social media is a visual medium. Are you posting enough photos, graphics and videos? Are your page’s profile image and cover photo inviting, attractive, memorable and appropriate to your brand?
4. Not interacting with your readers. Do you respond — and in a timely manner — to page posts and inquiries by your readers? Do you thank people for their comments? Facebook and other social media have become major vehicles for customer service.
5. Not promoting your page. If you’re not getting the number of followers you’d like, perhaps you’re not effectively promoting your page. Be sure to include links to your page on your email signature, website, ads, business cards, brochures and newsletters. You might also consider purchasing Facebook ads and its related product, paid promotional stories, which can be targeted to the demographic you seek.
While I’m using Facebook as the example in this article, these principles also apply to Twitter, Google+ and other social networks in general. Also, I should point out this list is simplified and far from exhaustive.
The overarching theme here, essentially, is time. Facebook and other social media may be free to use, but for this medium to truly be effective for your organization you do need to make an ongoing investment in time — learning, interacting, promoting.
If you don’t have the available time or expertise to do this, it may make sense for your organization to hire or outsource social media to a professional.