As a small business, social media is your secret weapon for marketing. It’s essential to use social media to reach new customers and connect with existing ones. Whether you’re just getting started or already running a highly successful campaign, there’s always room for improvement. In this article, I’ll explore the top social media mistakes small businesses make and how to fix them, including our own tips on improving your social media marketing strategy.
Not Posting Regularly Enough
One of the most common social media mistakes small businesses make is not posting regularly enough. This can be for a variety of reasons, from lack of time to simply forgetting. If you’re not posting regularly, your audience will quickly lose interest and move on to other brands that are more active on social media.
The fix: Set aside some time each week to plan and schedule your social media posts. If you can, designate someone on your team to be responsible for social media and make sure they have the time and resources they need to succeed. At minimum create and implement a content calendar to help keep you organized and your posts scheduled!
Some popular social media planners include Hootsuite, Later, and Buffer all with free to paid plans.
Posting Too Much
On the opposite end, some businesses post a little too much. This can be overwhelming for your followers and turn them off from your brand. It’s important to strike a balance between posting too little and too much.
The fix: Take a step back and analyze how often you’re posting on each social media platform. If you’re a home service contractor, insurance agent or Realtor posting multiple times a day on any platform, try scaling back to once a day or a couple of times a week. Experiment with different posting frequencies and see what works best for your audience. Remember that each industry is different, so what frequency is too much in one niche is perfectly fine in another.
Not Posting Relevant Content
Another common mistake is posting content that isn’t relevant to your audience or industry. This can happen if you’re trying to be too general in your social media marketing or if you’re not sure who your target audience is. As a result, your posts will fall flat and fail to engage your audience.
The fix: Take some time to research your target audience and what kinds of content they’re interested in. Once you know who you’re talking to, you can start creating content that resonates with them.
If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, try looking at what other businesses in your industry are doing on social media. Use social listening tools to track relevant keywords and see what kind of content is being shared the most. Then, adapt and improve upon it for your own audience.
Not Engaging with Your Followers
Another mistake small businesses make on social media is failing to engage with their followers. This means more than just responding to comments and @ mentions (although that’s important, too). It also means liking, sharing, and commenting on other people’s content.
The fix: Spend some time each day engaging with your followers and other people in your industry. Like and comment on their posts, share their content, and start conversations. Not only will this help you build relationships, but it will also make your brand more visible to new potential customers.
There are many tools that can help you organize and consolidate all your social media profile into one dashboard. These listening tools can single handedly change the game if you’re trying to increase your engagement across all social media platforms.
Sprout Social, Salesforce’s Service Cloud, and Reputation are the best at this. On a budget? Try Hootsuite.
Not Measuring Your Results
Measuring your results is essential. This is important for any marketing campaign, but it’s especially important on social media. With so much noise, it can be easy to get lost and not know if your efforts are actually paying off.
The fix: Use social media analytics tools to track your progress and measure your results. These tools will help you see how many people are engaging with your content, what kind of impact you’re making, and where you can improve.
Without measuring your results, it’s impossible to know if your social media marketing is actually working.
Many platforms will have these tools built in, but addition services like Sprout Social, Buffer Analyze, Hootsuite, and Social Report, can give you deeper insights about your customer base and what resonates with them.
Not Having a Strategy
One of the biggest mistakes small businesses make on social media is not having a strategy. They might post randomly or without any purpose, which can lead to wasted time and effort.
The fix: Having a social media plan in place will guarantee that your efforts are more successful and are working to assist your company’s broader objectives. When you’re coming up with a strategy, it’s critical to keep in mind these goals so that you can create material that supports them.
Additionally, figure out what your social media goals are, what you want to get out of it, and make sure to track them with analytic software (mentioned above) to ensure that your work is paying off. When developing a plan, remember who your target audience is and create content that speaks to them that aligns with your goals.
It is essential to take some time to develop a strategy since it’s easy to get lost in the sea of social media and fail to accomplish anything without it.
Not using social media to its full potential
Social media is a powerful marketing tool, but many small businesses don’t use it to its full potential. They might not take advantage of all the features available, or they might not use them to reach their target audience.
The fix: Make sure you’re using all the features available on each social media platform. For example, on Facebook, you can use groups, events, and Messenger to reach more people. On Twitter, you can use hashtags and lists to organize your followers. And on Instagram, you can use Stories, Live Video, and IGTV to engage with your audience.
Take some time to learn about all the features of each social media platform and how you can use them to reach your target audience. Then, start using them to your advantage.
Not Promoting Your Content
Not promoting your content can be a big mistake, especially if you’re a small business with limited resources. If you’re not promoting your content, it’s unlikely that anyone will see it.
It can feel awkward promoting your content. Some may even think promoting your own content is a lot like bragging or boasting! We did. That is until in one of our masterminds we learned the importance of tooting our own horn.
If you don’t toot your own horn, who will?
The fix: Promote your content on social media and other channels. Use paid advertising, share it with influencers, and post it in relevant groups and forums.
Don’t make the mistake of not promoting your content. Make sure you’re doing everything you can to get it in front of as many people as possible.
Not taking advantage of social media trends
Trends are everywhere and they’re easy to pick up if you use social media in both a private and work setting. Taking advantage of a trend can make your post go viral, especially if it’s curated to your audience. Ignoring trends will make you miss countless free promotion opportunities.
The fix: Use social media trends to your advantage. If you see a trend that’s relevant to your business, jump on it and use it to promote your content. Not only will this help you reach more people, but it will also make your brand more visible and relevant.
If you’re not sure where to start, check out some influencers in your industry and see what they’re doing to get eyes on their posts. Use can also use free websites like Google Trends, TweetDeck, and BrandMentions to track trends.
Ignoring negative feedback
It’s inevitable that you’ll receive some negative feedback at some point. And while it’s not pleasant, it’s important to take it in stride and use it as an opportunity to improve your business.
The fix: Don’t ignore negative feedback. Respond to it in a constructive way and use it to make your business better. Negative feedback can be painful, but it’s important to listen to it and use it to improve your business.
Bonus tip: Remaining in your comfort zone can kill your social media marketing efforts
If you’re not comfortable with change, you’ll never be able to take advantage of new opportunities or reach your full potential.
The fix: Be open to change and willing to try new things. Social media is constantly changing, so you need to be too.
These are just a few of the most common mistakes small businesses make on social media. By avoiding these mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to social media success.
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Linda Musselwhite is an author, speaker and co-owner of Musselwhite Marketing (est 2009). Linda’s previous positions as Human Resources Administrator. Combined with extraordinary customer service makes her the obvious choice of day to day operations for Musselwhite Marketing.
Connect with Linda on LinkedIn.