Social media can seem like a complete minefield. There are so many platforms available and an ocean of algorithms to contend with, it’s hard to know where to start. But, when worked with correctly, it can also be a powerful marketing tool and is often the place of discovery for many brands. So what are some of the most common mistakes people make and how can you avoid them? Let’s take a look at 5 social media myths.
1. You need to be on every social media platform
There are so many big social media platforms to choose between, brands often think it’s easier and more lucrative to open an account on all of them.
This is absolutely not necessary!
There are so many platforms because there are so many different types of audiences. Instagram is very much used by Millennials whereas Snapchat is used by Gen Z. LinkedIn is highly focused towards B2B marketing whereas Pinterest is certainly most beneficial for B2C. Each one is different, and if you open an account on a platform that isn’t aimed at your target audience it’s truly a waste of your time and resources.
It’s much more beneficial to focus on one or two social media platforms to start with. You’ll be able to spend your time more efficiently on each one rather than stretching yourself too thin. Always choose quality over quantity.
2. You need to post every single day
Whilst it’s important to actually remember to post so your audience knows you’re still in business (people will make their own assumptions), it’s not integral to do it every day.
Ideally, brands should post once a day. This has proven to be the most beneficial with social media algorithms, but even at least 3 times a week would be enough. People know that we have lives – they don’t care if you post every day – but some regularity reassures the social media bots that you are an active member of their community.
What’s probably more important is that you interact with your followers on your posts. Reply to their comments, ask them questions. That’s the bit that the algorithms like – conversations. Those interactions are what is going to boost your post organically so your content is seen by a bigger audience.
One thing to note – don’t bother posting more than once a day. Not only do audiences not like to be bombarded, but the algorithms will go against you and hide your posts. Don’t waste your time.
3. There’s an optimum time to post
There isn’t one. Simple as that.
What you can do is trial posting at a variety of times in your first few months to see the results. You may see some trends come out of it, but bear in mind that these results can differ week to week. Studying the insights available on the social media platforms will give you information about who your audience is, their age range, location and what times they’re seeing your posts, but social media is a funny thing. One day you may post at 9am and get a surge in reach, then you do the same the next day and it peters out.
What we can tell you is that social platforms love organic, fresh material. Of course scheduling posts is a handy tool, and there are plenty of suites that can help you with that, but platforms know the difference between a scheduled post and one you’ve written there and then. And you can guess which ones they favour…
4. Success comes from having a large number of followers
*Insert angry buzzer noise here*
It’s easy to get hooked up on the numbers but having a large following does not equal success. Having a smaller number of followers that actually engage with your posts and bring in potential sales is better than having thousands who aren’t interested at all. It’s good old quality over quantity again.
You’ll find if you have a sudden surge in followers that a lot of them are bots, which is of no use to you. Brands also often feel the need to go on a following spree to try and up their own followers. Whilst it can work, it’s better to be more focused when following accounts so you get the right audience following you back. Find other brands and people who fit your target audience. It’s worth having a look through your followers each week and having a clean up. That way you keep on top of removing spam accounts and then have a more realistic idea of your reach.
That’s not to say you should poo poo followers who you think would never buy from you. Remember, every person has their own friends, family and followers who you could potentially be recommended to. Just make sure they’re a real person.
5. I can publish the same post on all my social media platforms
Whilst it’s less time consuming to just have the same post for every platform, unfortunately each one is different. They have different layouts, different algorithms, different audiences. Instagram cuts every picture into a square and relishes a good old hashtag. Twitter relies heavily on short copy only, with only a couple of hashtags per tweet. Facebook loves a video but no hashtags. Tiktok needs short snappy videos, relies heavily on trends, plus has a much younger audience who uses it. You get the jist here…
Tailor your posts to each platform. It shows audiences that you take care and pride in your work. This is why using only one or two platforms is particularly encouraged. You won’t overload yourself with too many tasks. It’s better to do a couple of social accounts really well than lots of them being a bit rough around the edges.
Don’t lose faith if you don’t see results straight away. A lot of people think they’ll start getting a boost in sales in just one or two months, and start tailing off and making it less of a priority as time goes on. People forget to post or put their efforts elsewhere where they can see immediate physical results. Social media is for the long haul. It takes time and patience to create a following and find your rhythm, and is as much about brand awareness as simply making sales.
If you need any help with your marketing, feel free to get in touch with one of our team.