Social Mistakes can ruin your day. Or your life. Or your business. You can make a total fool of yourself in a one second post that will haunt you forever. You can also sit in your cozy little basement room at Grandma’s ignorant of the tittering laughter that accompanies your every post or comment.
Classic Social Mistakes that you’ve probably heard of include using trending tweet tags to slip your advertising message into the million or so baby or death announcements associated with it. Scheduling automatic tweets that reference outside people places or events you have no control over. Pinning your entire product catalog in Pinterest, and a slew of others I’m sure you’ve probably already read about and heeded well.
Be very cautious when you’re obviously promoting a product
I’d like to point out a few of the really subtle dumbnesses, er, social mistakes I see all the time on Facebook.
Top Social Mistakes on Facebook:
Me-Me-Me: all your posts, all day, every day, are about you. Yeah, you’re cool enough to have figured out how to make a Facebook page. We got it, and were you aware how easy it is to unsubscribe?
You need to engage your audience. Make them think you know something about something besides your own glorious visage in the mirror. You need to post stuff that might be remotely affiliated with you, but doesn’t directly involve you. Guide services can post photos of other climbers climbing, weather reports, pretty cloud pictures, news stories from other countries – just interesting stuff for your fans to kill time and figure you have a broad perspective on things.
Just uncheck the boxes to see nothing at all in your timeline – they’ll never know
Sniper: every time someone posts anything about anything, comment as though you own them. This is like the Chinese Fortune Cookie ” .. in bed” gag. I should also call this the “that’s not what she said” social mistake.
This is a great away to annoy a lot of people in a hurry. In case you don’t understand, here’s a purely hypothetical example of one of these social mistakes and the type of doo it can result in.
Bob: I just got my first hole in one today!
BadCompany: That’s probably because you were wearing your BadCompany Velcro Metatarsal Sling.
Bob: Um, no, I practiced a lot.
BadCompany: There’s nothing like a BadCompany Velcro Metatarsal Sling on the green.
Bob: I don’t even have that POS sling, I only followed you to win a freaking t-shirt
BadCompany: if you wear the BadCompany Velcro Metatarsal Sling, you’ll stop being so cranky
Oblivious. Yeah. Please, let people just have fun and don’t troll their posts. Like stuff, compliment people, grieve when they do, celebrate when they do, and don’t try to manipulate it into a shining marketing moment. It’s their moment, let them have it.
Don’t set anything on autopilot – makes you look not only dumb, but lazy
Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell: yeah, you’re a big important company, or rock star celebrity. You can ignore all your messages, emails, comments, and other attempts at close and personal contact. You earned your right to be above the riff-raff, right?
Sadly, ignoring everyone while posting links to your stuff to buy, and pics of your stuff or your entourage, is not engagement. Really, look it up – engagement is not one-way. This is one of the social mistakes that can actually be most costly in the long run. You can’t check your messages once a year. You can’t ignore people who may be trying to give you money. It’s not profitable. You don’t have to agree with everyone, and even a simple “Thank you for your comments and support” will do wonders for your image.
If you can’t deal with these simple little suggestions, consider outsourcing your social marketing. Hiring a community manager is a viable option, allowing you to focus on what you do best to make
money and doing the best you can to support your fan base. If you’d like to learn more about social etiquette – one of the best books I can recommend to avoid social mistakes would be “UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging” a total classic in the art of engagement, though it’s Twitter specific. Another recommended book, though only available for pre-order is Gary Vaynerchuck’s “The Thank You Economy” which has been the topic of talks at several high-visibility social media conferences.
Fun with the Sochi Mascots at SVO in Moscow
Do yourself, your company, and your social network a huge favor, and learn how to be responsible in your communities. I’ve written a very simple guide to Pinterest: Do-it-yourself Social Marketing: Pinterest with a simple plan to promote your business subtly without triggering anyone’s anti-marketing filters.
Drop me a line or comment if you have any thoughts you’d like to share. Thanks
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