Building a social following is a difficult process, and can also be a bit of a rollercoaster - right when you think you're hitting your stride, you often start losing followers. So we wanted to bring some things to your attention that you may be doing wrong, or could improve upon to stop the bleeding.
1. You're oversaturating your own market
There isn't a hard and fast science to when and how often you should post but there definitely is such a thing as social fatigue. Here are some examples of what you could be doing to oversaturate your market:
- You're posting too often;
- Your content is tired or on repeat;
- You're hitting the hard promotion or sale way too often;
- Your content isn't focused.
What to do
Watch your analytics and see what type of content is the biggest hit with your audience and find out your brand's peak hours for posting. Alternate your hard sales with some soft sales to avoid being as obvious. Get creative. Dive into different forms of content like video, podcasts, infographics, etc. and hit different types of people who like to consume content in different ways. Focus your content on weekly, monthly, quarterly themes and goals, with breaks to avoid persistent hard sales and social fatigue.
2. You're coming off as aloof
Think of social media as (wait for it) being social. You're not going to make friends if you don't contribute to the relationships. In real life, you lose friends. In social media, you lose followers. Here's what you may be doing to come off as aloof:
- You're not engaging with comments, retweets, answering direct questions, thanking people interacting with your posts, etc;
- You're not following your most active followers back;
- You're not linking to others;
- You're not reaching out to influencers.
- You're stretched too thin on social media platforms.
What to do
Create a database of your influencers and be sure to curate those relationships from time to time by linking to some of their work, liking their work, comments, etc. Set daily reminders to engage at least 5 times a day to ensure you're always making this a priority. Above all: make efforts to appear human and approachable!
On being stretched too thin: perhaps you get a bit excited and wanted to sign up for every platform under the sun in order to expand your audience as quickly as possible. That's understandable! But you need to realize that if you're not nurturing those audiences on each platform, you will lose them. If this is ringing too true, delete dead accounts and focus your efforts on your most successful platforms.
3. You're ignoring the technical bits
Have you been avoiding investing in a scheduling platform? Analytics service? Here are some of the technical bits you may be ignoring that could lead to you losing followers or at least not reaching new ones:
- You're not hashtagging;
- You're avoiding analyzing your metrics;
- You're ignoring the backend of platforms;
It can be tedious, but there's nothing for it: hashtags matter. It's a way of reaching a wider audience. If it's an aesthetic thing that's bothering you - especially on an aesthetic platform like Instagram - then consider the recent trend of putting your hashtags in a comment where they collapse.
You need to invest in a service for social that provides metrics and analytics. This is really the only way you can truly get a proper measurement and assessment of your audience. And the better you know and understand your audience, the better your social strategy will become.
You need to become familiar and timely with your understanding of a platform's algorithms and changes and what that means for you. This can help you be timely in pivoting your social strategies in order to ensure your content doesn't lack reach in the onslaught of your audience's feeds. Your content deserves to be seen.
You've got this. Three steps and you'll see the loss of followers slow, and then stop.