Social Media Marketing: The Pitfalls

A phone with icons for several social media apps

You may have friends who rave about the importance of a particular social media app for marketing your business. I urge you to tread carefully here and choose the service that best meets the needs of your business. Once you choose one, it is crucial to use it effectively.

Some social media platforms, like Instagram, are image-oriented. Videos and images get much better reception in terms of likes and shares than simple text. If your business is something that is reflected well on video or in photos then sites like these are great to use for promotion. However, other businesses that are less photogenic may benefit more from social media apps where posts are text-oriented, like Twitter.

With all social media sites, you need to post interesting content often to benefit from your networking efforts. With very limited exceptions, simply having a “page” or “account” that you post some things on once in a while, isn’t enough. Your effort is entirely wasted and your posts are unlikely to be seen even by those who made the effort to “like” or “follow” your page. For those who are not keen on social media, this will add a lot of potentially unexpected extra work and you may still need to pay to “promote” your posts anyway.

Really it’s all in the name, social networking is for networking, which is always a great marketing tool. Networking is not the same thing as placing an ad in a newspaper or billboard. It is about connecting with and engaging people. This works best with effort.

Is it worth the extra work? It certainly can be, if it is done well. The few success stories that are out there are the reason many are drawn to social media marketing.

Depending on your business type, you may find that investing some money into other modes of advertising can get you farther faster and involve less overtime hours.