It makes me tear my hair out every time (ok, not literally – because then I’d be bald) when I see people making social media faux-pas that hurt their brands. They’re little things that you may not notice, but everyone else does – the Web is watching! Believe it or not, the five following mistakes can shove prospects and even current customers out the door, and I’ll tell you why.
1) No bios. Social media is about making connections, right? How am I supposed to know who you are and how you relate to me if there’s no description of what you do or where you work? I’m huge on networking through social media, and being online is just pointless if you don’t make yourself available to those willing to meet you.
2) Sloppy profile pictures. No picture, a blurry picture or an unprofessional picture are all unacceptable in social media. Though social media is the new wave of communication, in order for it to work it has to have that human aspect. Photos are an essential part of this. I will not be following you if your profile picture is an egg, a possession of yours or a movie star that “sorta kinda” looks like you.
3) Not giving credit or providing attribution. A way to easily lose connections is to share or use content without attribution. It’s easy enough to grab a Twitter handle or tag someone on Facebook, so take the extra seconds to be sure you have it when you repost. It’s also not just about borrowing content – it’s about creating a connection with the person who published that content so they know you’re an advocate. That’s how influencer relationships are built. Get yourself on the radar of that “special someone” online.
4) Deleting posts because of small errors. This is disruptive, especially if others have already retweeted you or linked to your tweet. The friends of friends who click on your content will end up getting a page load error – then what? Leave the mistake (it makes you seem less like a robot auto-tweeting, anyway) and correct it in a post right after. Your community will thank you for it.
5) Crossposting. Newsflash! Posting your tweets to Facebook isn’t amplifying anything. It’s actually annoying people. People who engage primarily on Facebook might not be familiar with hashtags and the likelihood is that when you post your tweets to Facebook, they’re seeing these and question marks are floating above their head. Don’t devalue your community with the same content on each network. Customize content to your audiences for the best effect. Crossposting can be done – but in moderation and with care.
Social media is a delicate balance of content, networking and engagement. Be mindful of the moves you make to avoid confusion and aversion.
What are some other social media mistakes that drive you nuts? Share them with us in the comments section below.
(Photo Credit – Flickr Creative Commons: Bawdy Nan)