Offering uninterrupted access to the eyes of your target audience – whether they’re at work, on the go or sitting on the sofa in their pants – social media is a marketer’s dream. You have the world in the palm of your hand, a 1984-esque grip on its collective consciousness, except… why isn’t anyone listening?
For something that promises so much, social media can often deliver so little, so what’s going wrong? Well it could be that you’re making one of these basic mistakes with your campaign…
You’re Talking to the Wrong People
The World and his wife are on social media, but only a tiny fraction of the 1.2 billion active Facebook users or 645 million active Twitter users are actually relevant to your business, so you need to make sure that you are targeting your potential customers and no one else.
For example, you may spend £100 on Facebook’s Page Advertising and acquire hundreds of new likes, but unless you target the advertising at the right country and at people who have relevant interests then you’re going to be wasting your money.
The same goes for boosted posts, so before kicking off any social media campaign, make sure that you work out who you need to be targeting before hand to ensure you don’t waste a penny of that advertising spend.
You’re Talking too Much
You may have noticed by paying attention to your own Timeline that Facebook doesn’t show you every update posted by every person or company that you like or follow. This is because they have an algorithm that decides what it thinks you want to see based on past behaviour and interactions – how many times you have clicked a link, liked or shared a post etc.
With this information in mind, it is important that you don’t post dozens of updates a day, as this will more than likely bring the average engagement of your posts down significantly as their quality is diluted. Instead, make sure that you are only posting well thought-out updates that are useful and relevant to your target market.
Limit yourself to NO MORE than three posts per day, and avoid anything banal and generic like “Good morning, how is everyone today?”. Posts like this won’t receive any interest from anybody and only serve to give Facebook the impression that people aren’t that interested in what you have to say.
You Don’t Get Hashtags
A key element of Twitter (and more recently Facebook, though to a lesser extent) is the use of hashtags to categorise your updates and make sure that they find the right people. A simple concept in theory, but in practice understanding how to get the most out of them can seem fiendishly difficult, but given how much content is out there in 2014 it has never been more important to ensure your posts get in front of the right people.
Use your keywords as the basis for your hashtag research but never presume you know what people are searching for on social media – always base your decisions on actual research of possible hashtags and phrases.
Trendsmap.com is a fantastic tool for identifying relevant hashtags based on geographic location – perfect if you’re a company offering a local service.
You can also target influencers within your industry to try and leverage their audiences. Try and avoid anyone who is too high profile though as they will be far less likely to retweet your content than a mid-level influencer. The key thing to remember with ego-baiting is that they have to care about being directly tweeted at – something the more famous industry figures will get all of the time.