It’s true that each entrepreneur’s journey to success is unique. There’s no formula. There’s no true “right” or “wrong” way to make it happen. How it happens has to suit you as an individual.
It’s also true that bad habits can easily be picked up along the way, and the sooner you banish them from your routine, the better. Here are 20 bad social media habits to avoid:
1. Haphazard Blogging.
While there isn’t an exact formula to follow when it comes to updating your blog, you need to decide on one that works for you.
Some say minimum once a week, some say minimum once a month, some say don’t blog unless you have something important to say. Whatever you decide, stick to it so you don’t let your audience down.
2. Auto-Posting Everything. Everywhere.
Using a service like Ping.fm as your only means of updating your social media accounts will lose you respect faster than your last update was posted.
Clearly you’re using it as a way to save time, and it shows. It also shows that you care more about saving time than offering quality, custom content to your audience. They’ll in turn find someone who will put them first.
3. Posting No Original Content.
Retweets and shares are totally fine, but make sure you have your own unique thoughts dispersed throughout your feeds as well. It’s the only way to make a real connection with your followers.
4. No Clear Branding.
Your Facebook page has one name, your Twitter account another. Use the same images, logos, and descriptions on all of your social media accounts so your brand is memorable and distinct.
5. No Clear Niche.
If you’re building a blog about “stuff,” how can you expect people to stick around unless you’re concrete about what they should stick around for?
6. No Call-To-Action. Anywhere.
Of course, if you’re blogging about nothing in particular then it’s impossible to create a call-to-action enticing enough for your following to grow.
Be clear. Be concrete. Be clickable.
TMI = Too Much Information. There’s being authentic, then there’s acting as if you’re running a reality television show, which can come off as unprofessional. Leave something to the imagination.
8. You’re Everywhere. But In a Creepy Way.
There’s a difference between building a brand by being available and being obsessive. Replying to a comment five seconds later. Liking every, single Facebook status. Retweeting every chance you get. You get the idea. Stop it.
9. Being So Agreeable You Lose Your Voice.
In other words, when one of your followers says their favorite color is blue and you say, “Me too!” and another says theirs is black and you say, “Me too!”… Pick a color, and stick to it.
10. No Plan/Editorial Calendar.
In order to create a quality brand, you need a quality plan. Map out what you’re going to write about, chat about, and share so you can subtly incorporate your soft sell content into the mix without it screaming “Look at me! Look at me!”
11. One-Hit Wonder.
There are so many different ways to communicate about your brand – blogging, vlogging, podcasts, and now, Vining – don’t become a one-hit wonder. Vary your use of each medium to cater to your followers’ personal preferences.
12. You Take More Than You Give.
You’re always asking people to share and retweet your information, yet you rarely do the same in return. Eventually this will catch up with you. Your feeds will become the equivalent of a tumbleweed rolling by.
Someone follows you on Twitter, and within seconds they receive an automated direct message that says something like, “Thanks for following! Enter-lame-sales-pitch-here.” (And within seconds, they unfollow you.)
14. Not Being Yourself.
Write how you speak. Let your personality shine through your brand’s look, color scheme, images, and of course through your posts and social media comments. Always engage like you’re having coffee with a friend.
15. Slow Responses to Followers.
As your following grows, it will obviously become more difficult and time-consuming to keep in touch with everyone who leaves a comment or e-mails you. Incorporate doing so into your schedule, and if it’s only once a week let your following know how often you’re set to reply.
16. Getting Sucked Into Drama.
There’s always going to be someone with a miserable screw loose, ready and waiting to pick a fight. If there’s one time not to engage, it’s this one. It’s a waste of time, energy, and could easily damage your reputation.
17. Pulling An Eeyore.
When things are bothering you, it’s healthy to vent about them, but not necessarily to your audience. They visit your brand to seek inspiration for their own goals and aspirations. A black cloud over everything you share isn’t the best way to connect (unless you actually are Eeyore, then it’s cute).
18. Tagging People To Get Attention.
Tagging people in photos and posts just to get their attention is flat out wrong (and rude). It makes you look like Stuart from MAD TV.
19. Constantly Ranting.
Being passionate is one thing, but when your followers start asking if you have Tourette Syndrome, you might want to dial it back a tad.
20. Being Anti-Social.
You might be thinking, “Say wha?!” but seriously, it happens. There are plenty of feeds that only push advertisements and have no sense of interaction to prove it. I know you know better, but just in case, please don’t do this. Ever.
While it’s important to read up on the latest social media advice and tricks of the trade, you ultimately need to create your own system to accomplish your goals.
Your brand is based around your unique qualities and products, and so should your social media strategy.
What bad social media habits do you struggle with? Are there more you’d add to this round-up?
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