Top 12 Social Media Marketing Mistakes To Avoid

Social media has great potential for businesses that want to boost their reach, leads, and traffic. But when it is not being used properly, social media could actually damage the reputation of your brand.

When social media has so much to offer, it is crucial that you are proficient enough to know how to get the most out of it.

12 Common Social media Marketing mistakes To Avoid 

1. Trying to be present on all social media network at once

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According to recent research, most companies tend to rely on 3-4 social networks for branding:

  1. Facebook
  2. Twitter
  3. LinkedIn
  4. YouTube
  5. Instagram

If we look for more social media channels, we see over 500 million users on Instagram and over 100 million active users on Pinterest.

For sites that rely heavily on graphics and images, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest are ideal.

But if your site is about giving professional advice, then Twitter and LinkedIn are your best bets.

The networks that you spend the most time on should be able to yield the highest ROIs for the target.

Solution: Use one or two social networks at a time. Instead of using all social networks like LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter at the same time, try to focus on one or two networks.

Simply analyze where your audience spends most of their time and build your social profile there.

Once you are able to build your first social media profile’s authority and generate a sizable audience, only then you should try other social networks.

2. Not taking negative feedback seriously

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Negative feedback is common. You should never ignore it.

It’s an opportunity to know where your customers want you to get better. How you respond about your brand says a lot!

A few brands operate under the idea that they can easily remove negative comments. Others think that ignoring them is the right way to go. Instead of avoiding them, you should use these situations as opportunities.

Learn from them and respond to all negative comments. Use them to showcase your commitment towards customer service.

If not dealt with properly, this may be one of the biggest social media mistakes that can cost your brand in a big way.

Solution: Make sure to pay attention to all negative feedback. Even though positive comments make you feel good, you must also take note of these negative comments.

Now, I don’t mean you should give into nonsensical ideas, but pay attention to what people want you to change and whether that change can help the brand improve.

3. Posting similar content

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Posting similar content all the time could give people the impression that you are boring and that the brand doesn’t have much creativity to offer.

Instead of just posting one link after the other and some random quotes, you should try to stay in tune with the audience.

When you are hung up on posting similar content, followers will lose interest.

Solution: Post content that is creative and exciting. If you want, you can hire a creative team so that unique content is posted on a regular basis. This will keep your followers engaged and interested in reading your posts.

If you are running out of ideas, spend a few hours analyzing 5 competitors of yours and understand their SMM strategy. Simply pick out some tricks from them and re-define your social strategy.

But make sure to keep your content creative and engaging.

4. Posting too much in one go

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Are you one of those irritating and immature brands who keeps blasting content on their social media channels one after another?

Posting too much at one time is a horrible idea. People are more likely to unfollow you or simply overlook all of the posts you share.

Businesses need to use scheduling tools like SocialPilot to make sure there is a proper time frame between tweets and posts. When it comes to Facebook, marketers may visit their “insights” to see what time most of their fans are online.

Solution: Maintain a content calendar, and post a maximum of 4-5 tweets a day and 2-3 Facebook posts a day. Also, make sure to keep testing the post timings, number of updates posted, and be sure to have some content variety (text post, image post, video post, etc.).

5. Not measuring results

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In order to optimize the results, businesses should always analyze their social media marketing efforts. It doesn’t matter if the results are positive or negative.

What matters more is that you check, analyze, and understand the performance. This is crucial for a proper marketing campaign.

But always remember that it is not about getting more followers, likes, and comments.

You can be growing the account every month, but if the effort doesn’t translate into lead generation and revenue, then you probably need to alter your social media marketing strategy.

Solution: Once a week, sit down with your team and assess your plan thoroughly. Speak to those who can analyze business and marketing properly and can help your brand get even better with time.

Analyzing will help you optimize and improve your existing campaigns and you’ll get useful creative ideas to further your social media marketing strategy.

6. Adding the URL inside the description box 

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Who does that?

Never add the URL inside the description box. 

I notice many brands across the web doing such silly mistakes. I don’t know who’s managing their social media strategy…

The link that you have posted in the description box is redundant and should be removed immediately. Instead, just keep a simple and catchy description. The bare link should never take up the place of a proper description.

Solution: You need to add something catchy so that more people show interest in your site. In addition, URL shorteners like Bit.ly or Goo.gl can help you track all the click-backs.

7. Using irrelevant hashtags

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A common social media mistake is using too many irrelevant hashtags. If the content has no relation to the hashtag, then simply don’t add the hashtag.

You must always remember that adding hashtags can help more people view your content, so if you don’t use the right ones, you might not get the desired results.

Solution: Look up other sites that post similar content and try to use those hashtags in your posts (only if they make sense). Only then you will be able to engage more people with your brand.

8. Not using images for your social media updates

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Studies have shown that posts with images perform better.

People who read articles always want to see interesting and related images.

Therefore, when you post some content on social media, don’t forget to add a few images along with it. This will help people stay engaged throughout your content.

Solution: Include images while making social media updates. Also, try creating albums on Facebook while sharing images as it helps in getting a better reach.

Make sure the pictures are of good quality and are related to the topic. Also give image credits wherever it’s required.

9. Not updating regularly

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We often make the mistake of thinking that a proper cover photo, killer image, and good details in the About Me section is all we need to keep things going.

If you have been doing this, then you should change this habit immediately. Not updating regularly is a missed opportunity to scale up the results.

The idea here is to tweak a few things in your profile and always keep an eagle’s eye with the thinking and analyzing caps on.

This will help you understand your audience better and you will come to know what your followers like and don’t like.

Solution: You must always update the page, get a proper cover photo, use good images, and share them online. This way, people will know your brand is constantly evolving.

3 Social Media Marketing Mistakes That Could Get You A Lawsuit

Mistake 10. Copyright Infringement

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This is one of the most common offenses on the internet. Copyright infringement is the act of using someone’s work (usually copyrighted) without his/her permission.

So how do you identify when work has been copyrighted?

Well, aside from someone applying for a copyright, if there’s an idea that has been put into a tangible medium, such as a work of art, writing, photography, music, film, etc., the resulting material becomes automatically copyrighted and protected.

The creator of this material is not required to do anything else to get that sweet copyright protection other than to develop the piece.

They don’t have to publish it, register it anywhere (although they can), or put a © badge on it. They also don’t have to exercise much effort into defending the work.

So if you grab an image or a quote online for a tweet or use your favorite song to enhance your YouTube tutorial, you might have to pay a fine.

Here are some examples of businesses that faced legal charges for what may have been non-deliberate infringements:

  • In 2015, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) made a report of how an online travel agency owned by Serpil Sevin was ordered to pay $24,000 to Vincent Khoury Tylor, a landscape photographer based in Hawaii. Sevin had used the photographers’ work without permission, credit, or compensation.
  • According to a report from The Verge in 2014, a YouTube star (Michelle Phan) was sued by Ultra Records for copyright infringement over the music in some of her clips. After repeated warnings that she did not have permission to use this music, she continued, and is now facing statutory damages of $150,000 per each act of infringement.

When a piece of material is copyrighted, it means that only the creator has the right to:

  • Edit or modify it in any form.
  • Distribute it to the public.
  • Repurpose the work to another form.

Finally, the best way to stay away from copyright infringement is by using materials that you have the right to share, or the ones that belong to the public domain.

Also, whenever you use someone else’s work, don’t forget to give him/her credit as the original owner.

Mistake #11. Slander and Libel

Most of us have at some point made defamatory assertions at a time when we’re angry and offended.

A comment is defamatory if it is stated falsely as a fact, spoken to a third party, or if it is destructive to the subject’s reputation.

Slander and libel are two types of defamation. If you write an untrue or damaging statement about someone or group of people, you’re guilty of libel. And when you verbalize those words, you’ve committed slander.

Unfortunately, the internet makes it very easy for people to commit these offenses. Using this report from telegraph.co.uk as an example, “a typist who launched a Twitter rant about an unpaid £150 bill is facing a libel battle that could cost her £100,000.”

According to the report, the typist complained on Twitter because the company was late to pay her, and this ended up getting her a lawsuit.

The fact is that you can accidentally slander someone on social media without even knowing it.

Luckily, you can take some steps to avoid getting into this kind of trouble.

Some of the things you can do:

  • Never make any statement in anger.
  • Be very careful with your chosen hashtags.
  • Properly access your facts before sharing.
  • Be clear with your context.

Bottom line: No matter how angry or tensed you are, keeping silent will do you a lot of good. This is because one careless statement could cost you your business.

Mistake #12. Invasion of Privacy

I know you might be wondering how likely it is that you can invade someone’s privacy through your social media marketing efforts.

Invasion of Privacy
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However, there are many instances where you can commit this offense:

  1. Publicizing of private facts: There’s obviously some information people don’t wish to disclose to the public and would rather keep to themselves. If you expose these facts, you might get sued for invasion of privacy. An example of this is a case of an ESPN reporter, Adam Schefter, who was sued for tweeting the medical records of New York Giant, Jason Pierre-Paul, as reported on the New York Daily News website.
  2. False light publicity: It is illegal to publicize deceptive information about someone; especially if it’s very embarrassing and damaging. (Note: This is akin to slander/libel.)
  3. Misappropriation: It is also unlawful to use people’s names or images to promote your business without their consent – this is called misappropriation. (Note: This is akin to copyright infringement.) For example, some celebrities have sued a lot of companies in the past for using their images, like when Tim Duncan, a retired NBA star, sued a San Antonio real estate agent.
Tim Duncan
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Avoid These Social media marketing Mistakes & Avoid Getting A Lawsuit

All this said, there are legal defenses for everything.:

  • Copyright Infringement – “Fair use”
  • Libel/Slander – “Free speech”
  • Invasion of Privacy – “Freedom of information”

But in order to argue these points, you will still likely need to go through a treacherous legal battle that could cost you a lot of time, money, and potentially damage your brand.

I believe the best way to avoid problems is to not do unto others what you wouldn’t have them do unto you. I know you probably wouldn’t be happy if the world got to know about your medical information, relationship/family problems, financial woes, and sexual history.

So just be kind, and there shouldn’t be any problems.

Finally, be careful of what you do on social media. Even though it’s a handy tool for entrepreneurs and business owners, it can also ruin your business, and even your career, if misused.

So next time you go to make an angry post about someone or something on Twitter, make sure you know the risks involved.

You don’t want to be facing a lawsuit.

Bottom Line: Avoid these social media marketing mistakes

By avoiding such common social media mistakes, one can definitely expect improvement for their brand on social media. For this, you have to use all of your resources in a wise manner and respond to all fans and followers regularly.

Try treating your social media followers the same way you would treat other clients in a physical store. This will help you avoid making any drastic mistakes.

For further reading:

On that note, good luck and do let me know in the comments below 1 social media mistake that you now realize you have been doing and will not be repeating anymore… 🙂

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Authored By
A Passionate Blogger. SEO & Social Media Consultant. Crafting online marketing strategies for National & International Clients. Works at Mavis Edutech. Loves Watching Cricket and going for long car drives.

18 thoughts on “Top 12 Social Media Marketing Mistakes To Avoid”

  1. Hello Vineet, Thanks for sharing these great tips. You have included most of the points I am agreed with. I have also noticed so many people sharing post very frequently and most of the time these are duplicates with lots of hash tags and links, people usually stop following them. We can manage different social media accounts at a time with social media managing tool like hootsuite, what do you say?

    1. Sharing too many posts can annoy anyone, its important to figure out proper time schedule when you want your posts to be published on social media. I prefer posting in between 7pm – 10pm, that’s when my target audience (people interested to learn about internet marketing) are online.

      To manage posting on social media there are various tools, I am using free version of Buffer & it take care of the posting needs.

  2. Hi Vineet, It’s really a great read! Everyone must follow these suggestions to create an effective and successful social media strategy. I have a confusion in point 6 where you said: “Never add the URL inside the description box.” What is the harm in leaving a url if we first put a meaningful description and after that a link to the source? Thanks!

    1. Hi Devendra,

      Thanks for the kind words.

      In point # 6 I mean, while doing on page optimization, you should not add Link in the Meta Description. As we have limited characters, i.e. upto 160 Characters, we should mention the benefits the Product / Service / or that particular Page has on offer. That;’s what the primary purpose of Meta Description is. And you must include a Keyword as well in the Meta Description section, that may help in CTR as well.

      Jut try to write compelling Meta Description & target good CTR.

  3. Great tips vineet. By effective handling of negative and positive social media reviews, we can easily improve our sales.

    1. Hi Alana,

      Yes, Reviews plays very important role these days. Most people look for the reviews before buying your product or services. Its also good to have a section on website or social profiles and asking your happy customers to leave a review. I do this for some of my projects and helps in conversion.

  4. Nowadays it is very important to be connected with social media. It brings you traffic and you reinforce your brand

    1. Absolutely! Its vital to have a strong presence on social media. And, moreover, social media is 1 of the best way to connect with your target audience.

  5. Great Read, that’s gonna sure help many in realizing and improving the faults being done and will enhance social growth. Keep up the good work.

  6. Actually i added urls in description box, Now i realized about that point. Your article is very helpful. Thank you for sharing it

  7. “In order to optimize the results, businesses should always analyze their social media marketing efforts.”. It’s completely truth because there are many businesses which are extremely scare the negative results. Althought, these results can help them to improve their performance but they affair on their results. Besides, i completely agree with your first section that we must concentrate on one or two social network instead of all of social networks, because if we can build 1 or 2 social networks and have a huge fan, and huge quality. It can bring a lot of fan from 1 to 2 social media instead of all of social media.

    Thanks for great post.
    Min

  8. Prasenjeet Kumar

    Great article ! It was getting difficult for me to get visitors from twitter, but after reading your article I know that I have to make a different approach for twitter. A big thanks to this article.

  9. ABHISHEK VERMA

    Hi SML,
    I am using Social Warfare share buttons but it not showing share counts. why?
    I there any solution.

  10. Hi Vineet,

    An informative article. This article has well-explained the mistakes that most of the businesses make in social media marketing. And I am completely agree with you, most of the businesses jump into social media marketing without any proper planning and end up doing most of these mistakes.

    Many businesses fail to interact with their clients and followers by doing all such mistakes. You should know your target audiences. You need to know the preferences of your target audiences. I’m glad that you have covered this topic in such a detailed manner.

    Thanks for sharing it with us.

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