Eight Common Social Media Mistakes

eHow Tech Blog

Social media is like the world’s biggest cocktail party and when people show up, they get nervous and make mistakes, even with the best intentions.  Don’t be the buffoon at the bar annoying everyone with his obnoxious laugh and ridiculous stories!  When it comes to social media success, here’s my list of what not to do.

1. Me me me! It’s rude (and frankly, a turn off) to steamroll people with your ideas while letting everyone else’s fly past you, unacknowledged. Make sure you’re engaging in conversation, and retweeting other people’s ideas as much (if not more) than sharing your own.

2. Be relevant, not redundant. If you simply must repost the latest breaking news story or trending topic, try to add a new perspective so you can trigger some interesting conversation. Otherwise, it’s just a “me-too” post, which just adds to the clutter.

3. The Binge and Purge. Don’t follow piles of people and then delete them all en masse a few days later. It’s a trick people use to gain lots of followers quickly, and it reflects poorly on you. When it comes to audience, quality always trumps quantity, so spend time amassing followers who care about what you have to say, not stockpiling random bodies.

4. OMG, TMI. Trust me when I tell you that no one is interested in your stomach ache, your relationship issues, or how nosey your mother-in-law can be. If you use social media for business, every communication needs to be on-brand and professional.

5. When the going gets tough. If someone writes a derogatory post about your business, don’t argue about it — make it right.  The world is watching, so turning a disgruntled customer into a happy one shows everyone else your character.   On a personal level, remember that if you’re hating on your boss, it’s best not to vent on social media. Tweets live forever, so vent to your friend on the phone instead.

6. Be consistent. For social media initiatives to be effective, you need to be consistent. It’s better to post two or three times daily than to post 25 items and then nothing at all for days. Figure out what works best for you, create a plan, and stick to it.  Apps that pre-schedule tweets, like Hootsuite and Buffer can help.

7. I CAN HAZ SPELLCHECK? There’s really no excuse for spelling and grammatical errors in social. When it doubt, look it up!

8.  Quality over quantity. Before you hit “publish,” think about what you’re about to send. If you aren’t adding value, insight, or a bit of humor… don’t bother. No need to add to the noise. Be a resource, not a nuisance.

What social media mistakes do you think are the most comical or egregious?  Share them with me here.

Photo Credit: iStockphoto

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