If you are like most small business owners the idea of generating exciting content, uploading fascinating facts and spending time collaborating with business partners and new clients sounds great. So, you set up a social media site (probably Facebook) and instead, encountered a totally different reality. Non-engaged or irate clients, a steady stream of questions being asked again (and again and again), feedback from the same half dozen or so overly vocal attention seeking followers and the occasional message from your mother. Not exactly what you had in mind was it? As a social media management firm, we are here to tell you something…that’s not how it is supposed to be…and if you think YOU are bored…imagine how your clients feel! Keep reading to discover the top 10 reasons your social media site sucks and how to fix it!
1. It’s no longer new.
Once upon a time, social media was new and exciting. Few business brands were using it and even fewer local service providers. Clients thought it was a great way to connect with brands they cared about and business providers returned the favor by responding to inquiries in a timely fashion. That has now changed. Social media isn’t as novel as it once was…in fact, it’s becoming downright dull. The excitement has been replaced with expectation and very few business owners are living up to client expectations.
2. It’s tiresome…
and tiring. Let’s face it. As a small business owner you wear a lot of different hats. Accountant, marketing, problem solver, HR, and much more. Taking time to interact with clients in a fun, friendly and informative way…well, it’s hard work. And time consuming. And it shows! Readers can sniff out tedium like a bloodhound on the trail of a convict. Don’t try to convince them you are excited by the upcoming promotion if you have posted the exact same offer three times before. Ditto for that stock response you keep using in response to inquiries. Make it real or make room for someone to do it right.
3. Same Old Same Old.
We’ve said it before and we will say it again; no matter how tempting it is to share the same information that others are sharing…resist the urge. Clients want unique information and insight. Before sharing that article, photo or joke ask yourself how popular the information really is…if it’s highly popular, you are simply sharing the same old stale content. If it’s totally unpopular ask yourself why. If it’s brand new, go ahead and share. If it’s not, think twice.
Sooner or later nearly every new form of technology…including the use of social media marketing…reaches a point of saturation. Sites like Facebook are well on their way. Basically the vast majority of users interested in adopting the technology already have done so. From now on, only incremental increases will take place as the typical life cycle stage applies to new users.
Oh boy…this is a deadly one and one that every social media consulting agency encounters time and time again. Do not post the same content on each and every social media site! It discourages users from signing-up for different points of contact. For example, mix it up now and then. Offer Twitter users different promotions than those for Facebook friends. Get people to join Google groups through other special incentives. In short, share but don’t duplicate the exact same information.
7. Failure to Optimize.
So, you have a social media site (or hopefully sites…plural), a great landing page, blog and website. Is each properly optimized to take advantage of different devices? Very few things annoy clients more than a site which isn’t properly optimized for their own device…or browser. Make no mistake about it, mobile is different than a desktop. Tablets are different from both others. Browsers still matter…in fact, they matter more than ever. Don’t just assume clients will change browsers to see or interact with your content…they won’t! Always test site changes on different browsers and different versions of each browser. For example, it’s not sufficient to test Internet Explorer…you must test all versions of Explorer that are likely to be in use. Optimize for iOS, browser and device!
If redundancy and duplication are deadly sins, it is only natural to assume that isolation is equally annoying to friends and followers…and it is. The isolated use of a single social media presence is no longer optional; people want choices. Twitter for short updates, Facebook for generalized sharing, Pinterest for visuals, LnkedIn for business, Google+ for great content…you get the idea. Give people the choice of how they want to connect then provide the best information possible via each venue.
9. No response.
If you build it they may come but if you never take time to respond…they won’t stay! That is the hard lesson being learned by millions of small business owners that insist upon going it alone. Rather than driving business, potential clients are increasingly insulted by a failure to follow through on communication. It’s one of the top complaints of clients across the nation!
10. Stopped Growing.
Every social media sites is dependent upon one basic thing; people. As a social media consulting firm, one of the challenges of keeping things fresh is to attract a balance between loyal followers and some “new blood”. It’s important to keep growing. Social media stagnation takes many forms but in the end, eventually the same people always seem to share a certain opinion. Some dominate the discussion, others make the same old complaints and still others are delightfully dull in their praise. Keep things fresh by invigorating the site with new people and opinions!