Most of us are aware of the Ps & Qs of social media when it comes to our own personal use whether we choose to abide by them or not, but using social media for business is a whole different ball game. It's easy to make a misstep here and there despite our best intentions or those of our staff. At times we get lost in the content and maybe we even feel comfortable enough with followers to let our guards down a bit, and that's when accidents can happen. Here's a quick reminder on a few small social media mistakes that can create big problems.
#1 - DON'T QUIT
The first thing to know about running a business account is that it's a marathon, not a sprint. On a personal account, posting a picture of your kids in the park or some yummy looking tacos from your favorite Mexican place could get you lots of regular engagement from family and friends. This isn't the case when you're posting for customers with a marketing strategy in mind. You have to be prepared for some trial and error. Also, remember that social media is more about simply posting. You have to dedicate time to engaging with followers and other accounts if you want to see your own engagement start to grow.
#2 - DON'T GIVE AWAY ANY COMPANY SECRETS
When we get into a rhythm and start connecting with followers on our social media accounts, it's easy to get a little TOO comfortable and sometimes disclose info that should really ONLY be inside info. Agencies and agents should be very clear about information that is strictly proprietary and not meant for public knowledge. Talking about business partners, secrets specific to your agency or one of your agents, or your company's growth strategies is a BIG NO-NO.
#3 - DON'T GET LIPPY
Part of running business accounts is remembering that they're BUSINESS accounts. You wouldn't want to post anything that you wouldn't say or speak about in person with a client. You want to make sure your business is always represented in the best light, so steer clear of bad language, overly controversial topics and gratuitous self-promotion. Also, make sure you're using lingo that your audience understands. Too much insider talk can alienate followers who have no idea what you're talking about.
#4 - DON'T LET NEGATIVITY FESTER
Social media is loaded with "trolls" or people who have no issue with leaving negative comments on your posts or negative posts on your pages. Be sure that you or someone in your staff is in charge of always keeping an eye on follower engagement and posts that you may be tagged in so you aren't being pulled into something that you don't want to be a part of. Be prepared to deal with a negative comment calmly and offline, if possible. If it starts to get out of hand, don't be afraid to remove it. Your accounts are your space and, ultimately, you and your staff get to decide what lives there.
Social media is a must for your business. There's no way around it at this point. But there are lots of ways to make sure you're using it properly and to your advantage. Follow these tips for avoiding commonly made mistakes and you should be well on your way to successful social media marketing for your agency.
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