May 2013

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Stop Sabotaging your Social Media

5 Bad Habits to watch when conducting Social Media Campaigns

Manny Mandrusiak

Manny Mandrusiak
Managing Creative Consultant,
4 Bravo Marketing

Contributing Editor

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I am sure that everyone can remember being in a grammar class and told to use correct sentence structure and not to pick up bad writing habits.  Working with social media can also open the door for many bad habits and shortcuts that can have a negative impact on your marketing efforts.  The bad habits that this article talks about are common mistakes that anyone who uses social media can say that they have been guilty of at one time or another.  Present company included.  We live in a busy world, and sometimes business moves at lightning speed.  Often times little things like neglecting proper procedures for social media campaigns fall by the wayside and cause the best campaigns to fall short.

I have compiled five bad habits that can have a negative impact on the effectiveness of any marketing campaign that includes a social media component.

  1. Ensure to post in the proper sequence - When using social media to help promote a product, or new company news, always remember that your company website is the hub. Everything that gets posted should always link back to that hub.  Try this simple posting schedule to attract more traffic to the hub with your next campaign:

Too often when there is new corporate news to push out to the world marketers want to push it out to every means that they have at their disposal all at once.  A simple plan like the one above avoids the “shotgun effect” and enables each post to build on the one previous.  It also provides more traffic to the main website and will increase a website’s Google ranking.

  1. Stop selling on a personal Facebook page – Everyone has those friends in their personal network who continually posts about their business.  This turns people off simply because people use social networks to connect with people.  It is a great thing to be passionate about a business but I personally don’t want to look through my feed and constantly see posts that I need to invest in RRSPs or lower my mortgage rate.  A better strategy would be to post like a person and not as a business.  Post some pictures, or ask some questions, maybe an intriguing tip that will engage me.  Anything that presents a service or product in a way that does not look like an ad means that people are more likely to read it.
  1. Watch the Hashtags – Ever get one of those tweets that looks like it was written in some long forgotten ancient language? Hashtagging every word in a Tweet makes it look totally unreadable and like you are desperate for Twitter attention.  Keep the use of hashtags limited and only use them to relate to relevant events.
  1. contemporary Think before you Retweet –I must confess that I am guilty of this myself.  I recently went to a lecture on social media and retweeting was a major topic.  I was using retweeting to attract new followers when I did not have any new content, but I forgot the first rule of social media – people want to connect with people.  At the lecture I was reminded that followers want to hear from a person who has real thoughts and emotions.  The result of the lecture was that I learned if I have to retweet a tweet that I found extremely interesting then I need to add my comments to it.  It makes a great deal of sense to add a personal touch to a retweet and it keeps things real.
  1. Don’t become robotic – There are many tools on the web today that will enable users to preprogram social media streams.  While in concept it is a great idea to save time by automating posts, but it can make a company look extremely robotic and insensitive. Marketers need to be able to take advantage of timely events.  A software company located in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada can take advantage of the Vancouver Canucks making it into the playoffs by showing its support for the local team through social media.  This humanizes the company in the eyes of followers and establishes that the software company is proud to be local.  On the flipside companies need to be aware of the content of posts when tragic events occur.

Well there are my top five bad habits to watch when conducting social media campaigns.  They are small things that may seem trivial but in an information full market like the one we have today, every chance of getting your post or tweet read before your competitor is a good one.  I have found that working with social media is a continually educating process.  There is always something new to learn, and a new campaign to test.  It is exciting and it is one of the best ways that we can connect with our customers.  Happy posting and watch the hashtags!


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