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The 10 Worst Social Media Marketing Decisions and What to Do Instead

The 10 Worst Social Media Marketing Decisions and What to Do Instead | Social Media TodayHave you seen any social media users make a mistake? Of course you have because we all do. Unfortunately, some of these mistakes can be quite damaging to your image, especially when they are easily avoidable.

This list of 10 bad social media marketing decisions is meant to prepare you for them. It’ll help you find alternate actions to prevent the consequences you could see otherwise.

1. Responding too quickly to controversy

You could make the situation worse. Instead, take the time to think about what you need to say and in the best, calmest way possible. Alternatively, have a PR strategy in place that you can refer to for guidance.

2. Sounding forceful in your content

You could offend your audience. Instead, keep your content tone neutral or positive. Have an editorial guide for all content sharing for consistency and appropriateness.

3. Publishing irrelevant or boring content

Your audience follows you to see content that matches what you’re about. They don’t want to see what you ate for lunch if you’re usually sharing marketing tips. Instead, be relevant and publish only when you have something of value to share. Don’t publish for the sake of meeting a quota.

4. Trying too hard to go viral through controversial content

While viral content can bring lots of attention to your business, trying to force it can have the opposite effect than you intended. Pushing for viral content can lead to bad press and negative attention when it looks forced or offends. Instead, focus your efforts on reaching your target audience, not the social world as a whole. You want the right attention from the right people.

5. Talking about hot topics, such as politics and religion

This can be especially harmful if you’re not in the politics or religion sectors. Instead, be objective about current events and news. If you’re not a politician or news station, don’t bring up politics. If you’re not a church or religious organization, avoid taking a stance on that topic.

6. Focusing exclusively on self-promotion

People who see you sharing only your own content and pushing your products / services might think you’re bragging, narcissistic and pushy. Instead, curate your social content with a mix of your content with that of others in your industry. However, you need to thoroughly check the other content to make sure you agree with what the source is saying. If you share content that goes against your purpose or mission, it’ll look bad, just like too much self-promotion.

7. Being impersonal

People don’t like feeling ignored by robotic accounts. They want to hear back from humans, not only see broadcasting from your account. Instead, participate in real-time discussions, such as Twitter chats and LinkedIn groups, to give your brand a human feel. However, make sure you’re being genuine in your interest.

8. Being generic with your responses to people

This is another form of being impersonal. People prefer to see that you read their message. If you just write the same response over and over, it looks fake and lazy. Instead, personalize each response depending on what was initially said. Show you read what they said by repeating their topic in some way and including their name.

9. Focusing all your real-time activity on influencer interaction

Yes, influencers are great because they can share your content with their large audience. Unfortunately though, influencers are unlikely to be part of your target audience for sales. If you focus only on them, you’re missing out. Instead, communicate with your current and potential customers as well. They are the ones who deserve the majority of your attention because they have either shown interest in your company or could be sales prospects in the future.

10. Automating your content too much

Don’t get caught with the wrong content at the wrong time. You could end up being seen as insensitive, fake or lazy. Instead, reach out to others in real-time by retweeting, sharing, replying and commenting on their activity. Check your automated sharing schedule frequently, and don’t schedule too far in advance.


Now that you know these 10 actions to avoid, are you ready to get your social media marketing on the right track? Don’t let bad decisions get in the way of your social media ROI. Take the time to prepare with optimal content and strategies, and you'll see better results in the end.

Main image via Shutterstock

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