Learn 5 subtle but deadly killers of social media marketing that can ruin your brand online – and how to avoid them
It’s not just your logo design that’s essential to branding – the way you present your brand on social media is as well. Social media is only worth doing if you’re doing it right. Every post you make on Facebook, each photo you post on Instagram, and every character you tweet on Twitter is either growing or gnawing away at your brand.
Unfortunately, the damage isn’t usually realized until it’s too late to reverse. By making sure you’re aware of the most common social media branding pitfalls – the silent killers of social media marketing – you can sidestep disaster and help your brand shine on social media.
Errors of any kind
Yes, your post quantity is important, but quality is more important. Everything you write online influences prospects’ perceptions of your brand. In your customer’s mind, errors in posts – from what is said to how it’s said – translate into errors in quality of your product or service.
Edit, spellcheck and proofread everything, especially your tweets, which are tempting to overlook in pursuit of a quick quip. Make each of those 140 characters work for you, not against you, double-checking hashtags for unfortunate alternative readings (click here for a few examples). The last thing you want is a viral #fail.
When it comes to popular acronyms (e.g., “Lol,” “IMO,” etc.), decide upfront if using them works for your brand. They add a layer of friendliness and familiarity, but can also feel informal and unprofessional. What will your audience think?
Ignoring the visual
Sometimes, small businesses get so wrapped up in sounding smart that they overlook the importance of looking smart. Because they evoke emotion in a way text and hyperlinks can’t, images are some of the most shareable, valuable content on the Web (Consider Facebook’s 2013 acquisition of Instagram for $1 billion.)
Your logo design, photos, graphics, and layout speak volumes about you as a company – so take the time to create a professional, cohesive impression. Posted photos should be compelling, but never at the expense of being professional. Make sure that you’re using an appropriately sized version of your logo design on all your social media properties – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Each one requires a different version of your logo mark, sized proportionately. Find our in-depth guide to the proper image sizes for each network at the Related link below.
Consistency is your friend when it comes to social media – in all kinds of ways, including messaging, image, username, tone, frequency, and strategy. It’s not just what you say that matters. It’s how you say it, when you say it, and how often you say it.
Before you post or tweet, ask yourself if the message is on-brand. Does the content support your brand values?
Every photo, caption and hashtag you post is an opportunity to build or bust your brand’s unique story and personality. Before you post or tweet, ask yourself if the message is on-brand. Does the content support your brand values? Is it phrased in a way that consistent with your previous posts/tweets? Is the hashtag truly relevant to your business or are you simply jumping on a passing fad?
Responding to every critical post instantly or indiscriminately is social media suicide. Think twice before responding – if you respond at all – laser-focusing on your overall brand strategy without even a hint of emotion. Be friendly without being defensive, which just makes you come across as petty. Remember, posts can easily be taken out of context, or misinterpreted, so take the time to get it right.
Too much or too little
Excess is rarely a good thing, and online, it’s no exception. Your audience will tune you out if you’re constantly trying to get their attention. Conversely, they’ll forget about you if you don’t remind them regularly. Set a realistic posting schedule that balances quality and frequency – and then stick to it. That way, when it’s time to announce something big, your customers will be listening.