Social media opens up a wealth of opportunities for any business, but it is also potentially treacherous territory if you are not prepared or don’t know what you are doing. Using your social media channels effectively is essential to manage any online reputation which, according to Business Insider:
Is used by a wide range of people and companies, from mom-and-pop shops trying to get good reviews on Yelp to celebrities, politicians, lawyers, and even tech giants like Samsung.
There are plenty of tips and lots of advice for what you should be doing but what about those big mistakes that can undo a lot of your hard work and eat away at your digital marketing budget?
Not Understanding Your Target Audience Properly
The right messaging is crucial to online reputation management. Constantly sending out self promotional material to fans and followers on a social network will not get the desired effect. Not responding to feedback and complaints in time or not monitoring what is being said, how it is being said and who said it, would also get you into trouble.
There is no excuse for not understanding your demographics, no matter how many you have. The insights and metrics available through the social media networks are far superior to what can be obtained through Google and its various products. The personal details and insights users share on social channels mean more metrics and more targeted communications for your business.
Underusing Social Media Channels: LinkedIn Showcase Pages
On LinkedIn showcase pages the content is highly targeted and personalized for the specific audience you are talking to. Upon publication of your content, metrics and analytics are available so you can monitor the progress of any page. If you are not making use of this enhanced feature, you could get left behind. HubSpot tells us:
Showcase Pages are niche pages off of a company page. They allow a company to promote specific products or market to a specific buyer persona. LinkedIn users can follow singular Showcase Pages without following the business or their other Showcase Pages. This allows businesses to promote for and cater to the audience specific to the page.
Underestimating Facebook: Staying Out Of Date With New Research
Are you one of the businesses that isn’t sure if Facebook is the right channel for you? Do you run an e-commerce store? Did you know the majority of Internet users prefer to log into a website using their Facebook credentials? Social Media Examiner informs us:
If you have a website that requires users to register, you should understand the concept of password fatigue. 92 percent of shoppers abandon a website rather than go through the process of recovering a lost or forgotten password. But if a website has a social login option, 65 percent of shoppers are more likely to return.
And, if you are really out of date with the latest, it is also worth knowing that Facebook-owned Instagram is now the most rapidly growing site on a global level. The last six months of 2013 saw the active user base increase by 26 percent. More significantly though: there were 90 million active users in January 2013 – but this figure increased to 180 million in January 2014. Instagram’s major appeal lies in the fact that users can share their photos instantly and take advantage of the platform’s post editing capabilities. If you hadn’t accepted it yet, we are really deeply entrenched into the visual cues provided by social networking, and Instagram is now at the helm.
Underusing The Power Of Twitter
You are probably well aware of Facebook’s suitability as a reputation management tool, but have you ever thought about or used Twitter? New data shows that 59.3 percent of customers’ questions are posted on Twitter whereas only 40.7 percent are being asked via Facebook.
It all goes back to knowing and understanding your target audience and where they like to hang out. If your target audience wants to engage more intimately with your brand, Facebook might be the answer. Not being active, or active enough, on this platform could see your customer relations management neglected and users not receiving timely responses.
Doubting Pinterest Can Work For Your Business
With 70 million users, Pinterest is driving lots of referral traffic. How much is lots? Writing for CopyBlogger, Beth Hayden states that:
Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Twitter, StumbleUpon, Reddit, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Google+… combined. And contrary to popular belief, maybe contrary to even your belief, that traffic is converting… because many pinners use the site specifically for product and content discovery.
Whether your site is used for informational purposes or as an e-commerce tool, this is pretty entertaining news for website owners. It is also worth knowing that the primary demographic, doing this shopping and sourcing on Pinterest, is female.
Forgetting That The Customer Is Always Right
Sure social media channels allow us to be honest, sometimes even opinionated about major issues, but ultimately any negative feedback needs to be taken into account. And you might be serious about repairing a damaged relationship with a disgruntled customer, but it actually goes beyond that because a live complaint is not just restricted to the customer who made it. When it’s on a social media platform everyone else can see it. And, they’re judging you, whether you like it or not. regardless of what is said or the manner in which it is delivered, your brand literally has to save face at every opportunity. And a humble apology really can go a long way.
Not Ensuring Your Social Media Pages Are An Extension Of Your Customer Relations Management
If you are a business that values and invests in customer relations it is something of a disappointment if users’ online experiences do not match their offline engagements with your brand. When customers have been able to click their fingers and have their wishes granted in your store or office and they discover they can’t have this online, you can also run into problems.