Tag Archives: Social Media

4 Significant Advantages You Have Over Big Brand Social Media

Social Media AdvantagesSocial media marketing often gets media attention and viral activity when big brands create a big budget video designed to attract attention and be shared. Consumers often connect with humor or emotion contained within such videos, share them and the next thing you see is the media and news sites writing about how awesome or effective the campaign was and what you need to learn from the situation for your brand. Sound familiar?

Big brands are also singled out when they commit an epic fail within social media marketing. Writers and the media love to jump on the bandwagon for these situations and turn another company’s misfortune into traffic, viewers and subscribers.

In both cases, there are often few connections between these fortune 500 companies and your business or personal brand. Nothing they do within social media can seriously be translated over to what YOU should be doing. In fact, it is my belief that most major brands are largely clueless about social media marketing, engagement, relationships, selfless value and their audience. And you know what? They don’t have to.

Large brands have spent millions and probably more like billions on branding, major media advertising and exposure over the last 15 years prior to the heydays of social media. Their purpose and focus for being in the social graph is more liken to being forced into it or solely to further their other advertising efforts, rather than a corporate culture shift that compels them.

Let’s be very clear here. I am not speaking about EVERY major brand out there, but certainly MOST. Don’t believe me? Just mention your favorite major brand on Twitter, or comment on a post on their Facebook fanpage and prepare for the ignored silence you will receive. For most it is about branding and additional impressions, not relationships, conversations and connecting with their audience.

Having said this, there are several distinct advantages that small and medium-sized business (SMB) marketers and brands have over large behemoth corporations that you may not consider. Understanding these advantages and leveraging them within your social media management is paramount to winning in your space. Let’s outline a few of these advantages.

“there are several distinct advantages that (SMB) marketers/brands have over large behemoth corporations”  Tweet:

4 Significant Advantages You Have Over Big Brand Social Media

Decision Making – One massive advantage you have as an SMB is a lake of corporate bureaucracy. You have the freedom to make decisions and execute on them without committees, corporate politics and meetings. You can perceive needs, identify opportunities and respond to them as you see fit.

Nimble – In business there is something to be said about having speed. Speed to market and the ability to shift, change and pivot are distinct advantages online. Having the freedom to make decisions and the ability to quickly act upon those decisions is incredibly valuable to a social business. Market changes, trends and the latest news provide opportunities to the nimble brand within social media. Your ability to act upon these information pipes faster than the larger brands should be an important part of your social media strategy.

Relevant Value – As we defined above, large brands often make their social media marketing an extension of their media advertising and branding efforts. YOU have the ability to transcend branding and elevate your efforts to the human level. You are able to share relevant, selfless content with your audience that big brands don’t. You’re able to comment on your target audiences posts and open communication channels that build real and lasting relationships.

Understanding this point and executing it properly, provides your SMB with numerous opportunities to out maneuver big brands and gain traction far more rapidly than they ever could.

Mistakes – Finally, you can make mistakes with your social media marketing efforts with far less impact to your brand. You’re not a massive publicly traded company with executives that are far more afraid of what could go wrong within social media, than how to make it effective. You can make mistakes, own them, apologise and move forward without a massive media or social graph backlash that requires thousands of dollars, public relations repairs and time to heal from the impact. You can press your social efforts ahead without fear of making a brand-killing mistake. Talk about freedom!!!

As you finish reading this blog post and go back to your day, I would like to challenge you to consider these advantages. Ask yourself if you are actually leveraging them in your favor. At the end of the day, you have many opportunities to be more effective than these big brands. Maybe not in raw numbers, but certainly with more speed and as a percentage.

Stop trying to emulate what big brands do in social media and instead focus on being human, engaging and with selfless value. At the end of the day THIS is where you can outperform your biggest competitors.

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Filed under Brand, Content, Fanpage, Followers, Marketing, Relationship, Social Media, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, Strategy, Twitter

Three Important Components Of Content Marketing

Important Components for Effective Content Marketing Content creation and content marketing has become a crucial element to any digital marketing effort. The transition from big brand only tactic to common place for all online marketers has and will continually expand. Using content for search engine placement and optimization, social network exposure and traffic is quickly becoming a must have component in any online marketing strategy.

While there are certainly many components to effective content marketing, here are three buckets that really require attention and preparation.

Content Creation -

In order to conduct content marketing effectively, you have to create content for your target audience that has relevant value.

  1. Who – Do you know who your target audience is? Be very clear about exactly who you are trying to reach with the content you create.
  2. What – Do you know the challenges your target audience is facing and/or the type of content that drives their interests online? Create compelling content that addresses their challenges and connects to their interests. Create content that speaks to them, not always about you.
  3. When – How consistently and frequently are you creating content?

“Create content that speaks to them, not always about you.”  Tweet:

Promotion/Distribution -

It’s one thing to create content, it’s wholly something different to promote it and get traffic to it.

  1. Channels – Know the online channels where your audience spends most of their time. Be highly active in those channels with consistent, relevant, selfless content that is not yours. By providing relevant, curated content consistently, you will earn the right to promote your created content.
  2. Community – The more consistently and frequently you create content, the larger and faster your community will grow. That includes your social following, subscribers to your blog and organic search reach.
  3. Tools – If you are active in all the right channels, providing selfless value to your audience and therefore built a large and loyal community, you need to ensure that you have an effective tool stack that helps you distribute your content to friends, followers and advocates.

Our tool stack incorporates Hootsuite, Bundle Post, Bundlet, Triberr and our email newsletter system. You want to be sure that the tool stack you are using is highly efficient and effective. Be sure that the tools allow you to promote your new content when it’s published, but can also manage that content for addition postings into social media easily and with strategy. You’ll definitely want the ability to seamlessly track when you shared the content last and schedule it repeatedly moving forward to ensure the optimum reach, traffic and exposure long-term. Social Content Management Is Important!!

Conversion -

Experienced content marketers know why they are creating the content they produce. They understand their objectives, processes and they track it to ensure the goals are being achieved. If they are not, they make changes to the process and do it again. Are you doing this?

  1. Objective – Do you know the goal and objective for your content? Have you planned, developed and tested what happens to the traffic your drive to your content?
  2. Process – Do you have a well thought out process and supporting mechanics to convert the traffic to your content into leads, customers, inquiries or subscribers?
  3. Tracking – Are you tracking the traffic to your content and measuring important metrics to determine what is working and what isn’t?

Although content marketing and content creation do not rise to the level of rocket science, they are both highly specialized components of today’s digital marketing requirements.

What are additional components that you utilize within your online marketing efforts?

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Filed under Community, Content, content creation, Curation, Hootsuite, Marketing, Social content management, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, social media tool, Tools

The Top 50 RSS Feeds In @BundlePost

Now that Bundle Post is handling millions of curated, marketing and other social media posts on a monthly basis, trends within our massive database are starting to appear. One of the trends we are tracking is which of the millions of RSS feeds added to the system by individual users are the most popular.

The Top 50 RSS feeds used for social mediaThe Bundle Post RSS engine allows users to add any RSS feed into their Bundle Post account, where we automatically ingest, database and manage the content multiple times per day. This content aggregation and management process dedups posts for every feed, tracks which you have shared on social and enables you to flag content you want the system to keep so you can share again. You can easily schedule, hashtag and manage social media marketing and curation posts in just minutes every 3-5 days.

With thousands of users, millions of RSS feeds and subsequent social media posts, we are now able to easily list the most frequently added feeds and most popular content sources within the system.

*It’s important to note that if you have installed the Bundle Post Chrome extension, you can easily add any of the following RSS feeds into your own Bundle Post account with a few clicks.

The Top 50 RSS Feeds In Bundle Post:

1) Bundle Posthttp://bundlepost.wordpress.com/feed/ – Not a big shock that our users are taking advantage of our blog content. We are honored!

2) Bundle Post YouTube Channelhttp://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/api/users/BundlePost/uploads

3) Social Media Examinerhttp://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/feed/

4) Social Media Todayhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/socialmediatoday_allposts

5) Mashablehttp://feeds.mashable.com/Mashable

6) Entrepreneur - http://feeds.feedburner.com/entrepreneur/latest

7) SteamFeedhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/steamfeedcom

8) Copybloggerhttp://feeds.copyblogger.com/Copyblogger

9) Marketinglandhttp://feeds.marketingland.com/mktingland

10) Inchttp://feeds.inc.com/home/updates

11) Small Business Trendshttp://feeds2.feedburner.com/SmallBusinessTrends

12) Jeff Bullashttp://feeds.feedburner.com/JeffbullassBlog

13) Duct Tape Marketinghttp://www.ducttapemarketing.com/blog/feed/

14) Hubspot Marketinghttp://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/rss.xml

15) Business 2 Communityhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/B2C_Social

16) Tech Crunchhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/TechCrunch/

17) Danny Brownhttp://feeds.feedblitz.com/DannyBrown

18) Hubspot (all Blogs)http://blog.hubspot.com/rss.xml

19) Fast Companyhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/fastcompany/headlines

20) Wiredhttp://feeds.wired.com/wired/index

21) MarketingProfs (all blogs)http://rss.marketingprofs.com/marketingprofs/allinone

22) Search Engine Landhttp://feeds.searchengineland.com/searchengineland

23) The MOZ Bloghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/mozblog

24) Search Engine Watchhttp://searchenginewatch.com/rss

25) Social Freshhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/SocialFresh

26) Content Marketing Institutehttp://contentmarketinginstitute.com/feed/

27) Pro Bloggerhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/ProbloggerHelpingBloggersEarnMoney

28) Life Hackerhttp://feeds.gawker.com/lifehacker/full

29) Kim Garsthttp://kimgarst.com/feed/

30) Razor Socialhttp://www.razorsocial.com/feed/

31) Marketo Marketing Bloghttp://feeds.feedburner.com/modernb2bmarketing

32) The Next Webhttp://feeds2.feedburner.com/thenextweb

33) Heidi Cohenhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/HeidiCohen

34) Harvard Businesshttp://feeds.harvardbusiness.org/harvardbusiness/

35) VentureBeathttp://feeds.venturebeat.com/Venturebeat

36) PR Daily – http://www.prdaily.com/Rss.aspx?sn=RSSHome

37) Jenn’s Trendshttp://jennstrends.com/feed/

38) eMarketerhttp://feeds.emarketer.com/Articles.xml

39) Brian Solishttp://feeds.feedburner.com/BrianSolis

40) 99Uhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/The99Percent

41) Tech Crunch (Social)http://feeds.feedburner.com/TechCrunch/social

42) Curattihttp://curatti.com/feed/

43) Houzzhttp://feeds.feedburner.com/houzz

44) Forbeshttp://www.forbes.com/entrepreneurs/feed/

45) Digital Trends – http://www.digitaltrends.com/feed/

46) Mediabistrohttp://www.mediabistro.com/alltwitter/feed

47) Inkling Media – http://feeds.feedburner.com/InklingMedia

48) ConversionXL – http://feeds.feedburner.com/ConversionXL

49) Intuit – http://feeds.feedburner.com/IntuitBlog

50) The John Maxwell Co – http://www.johnmaxwell.com/rss/

What about YOUR content? If you’d like to add your RSS Feed into the Bundle Post Index, click here.

If you’d like to spend 80% less time scheduling, hashtagging and managing curated and marketing social media posts, start your Free 3o Day Trial of Bundle Post Today!

Want to schedule a live demo of Bundle Post in action? Give us a shout on Twitter – @BundlePost

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Filed under Blog, Bundle Post, Bundlet, Chrome Extension, Content, Curation, RSS Feed, Social content management, Social Media, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, social media tool, Tools, Twitter

Hashtag Automation Gets An Efficiency Upgrade

The Bundle Post development team has been hard at work on a copious amount of back-end systems upgrades. Many of the things we have been working on are not things you can actually see, but server enhancements and scalability upgrades that are the underlying foundation for the larger feature additions that are in development. There are so many groundbreaking social media management capabilities coming down the pipe in the next several months, but we have to wait to share all that. However, we did roll out a few enhancements to the automated hashtagging functions within the system that we are sure you’re going to appreciate.

Automatically hashtag social media postsFor those of you that are unaware, part of the Bundle Post 20 patent pending claims is our Automated Hashtagging System. This feature enables you to identify exact keywords, phrases and company names that you would like the system to locate in the text of curated and marketing posts, then automatically convert those into replaced hashtags or @mentions you desire. Not only can you schedule 100 content curation and social media posts rapidly with total control over what is scheduled, but you can also hashtag those 100 social media posts in about one second! 

Another use for the Bundle Post Hashtag function is to automatically turn company names into their @ Twitter names. You can simple tell the system what exactly to find (example Bundle Post) and instead of replace the company name in the text of the post with a specific hashtag, you can tell the system to replace it with the Twitter name (@BundlePost). So anytime “Bundle Post” appears in the text of a post within the system, it will be modified to display @BundlePost. Pretty cool huh? Yes, we know. :-)

Here’s what the system looks like -

Social media automation, curation and hashtags

With the background explained, lets discuss the enhancements to the hashtag system that is now live for all users.

Bundle Post Auto Hashtag Function Upgrade:

1) Sorting View – Previously when you opened and viewed a Hashtag folder in Bundle Post, the keyword list for that folder were displayed in recent order, putting the most recently added keyword and replacement hashtag at the top. We found this very difficult to easily find keywords and replacement hashtags contained in the folders. Now – when you view a hashtag folder or open a folder to hashtag your scheduled posts, they are all displayed alphabetically. making it easy to find/view specific keywords in your list.

Automated Hashtag Tool

2) Hashtag Order – We have made the actual hashtag system more intelligent to ensure that single word finds aren’t preempted by phrases when you run hashtags in the system. Previously the system would hashtag your scheduled posts in the same sequence in which you added the hashtags into that folder, similar to the old sorting view we described above. What that meant was that if you had a keyword/hashtag for the single word “Social” before the phrase “Social Media” in your hashtag folder, the system would find and hashtag the word “social to #social” then not be able to find the exact phrase “social(space)media”, leaving your posts looking like this: #Social Media is awesome.

The new functionality ensures that whatever sequence you have added keywords or phrases to your hashtag folders, the system will always hashtag phrases with multiple words in them first, then hashtag single words after that. The new intelligent function tracts all of your hashtags listed and determines how many words you have in each Find field and uses that information to intelligently automate the hashtagging of your scheduled posts.

What you will potentially find is that keywords that were not being hashtagged even though you had them listed in your folder are now being discovered properly by the system. You will also be able to more easily manage the keywords and hashtags within Bundle Post to ensure your posts are always hashtagged and done so properly.

The Bundle Post social media marketing, content curation and content management tool is a completely unique approach that gives you complete control of your posts and gives you the time to engage and get results. All of the automation resides in the back office, so nothing is auto posted to your newsfeeds.

We would love to hear your thoughts on the new hashtag functions, so comment below on how you’re using the Bundle Post hashtag system.

*BONUS System upgrades live -> You will also notice that we have incorporated a lot of JavaScript functionality into the user interface across the entire system that has largely removed the need for your browser to refresh. We will continue to incorporate more of this higher level functionality and improve the overall user experience, speed and capabilities.

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Filed under automation, Bundle Post, Content, content creation, Curation, Hashtag, Social content management, Social Media, social media automation, Social Media Content, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, social media tool

7 Traits That Define A Company’s Business Culture As Social

What defines a Social Business CultureThis last week I was involved in a few conversations that surrounded businesses that are on social media, more specifically those that either are executing it well and those that are just there. It got me thinking about the millions of brands, both large and small that have a social presence, yet clearly do not have a corporate culture of social within their organization. As I pondered this, I also thought about our organization that not only lives in social, but was born out of a social media agency and used this as our guide.

Since many large brands are now in social media and easily garner large audiences due to their prolific branding and massive advertising budgets over many decades, it is important to point out that MOST have anything but a corporate social culture. In fact many of the larger brands we all know around the world have some of the worst social media marketing execution. I am not talking about just the epic fails we read about from these massive corporations, but even their daily social media activities are a slap in the face toward what any experienced social media professional knows about this space.

For this and many other reasons, I personally avoid large brands online. I stay clear of their noise, self-promotion and other social marketing efforts. If I based my shopping on their lacklustre social media marketing and poor engagement, I would never be able to bring myself to visit many stores. But I digress.

Rather than detail all the failings of brands within social media, we decided it might be far more helpful for many small and medium brands to develop a list of traits that are displayed by brands that have created and fostered a corporate culture of social within their business. We got feedback from our awesome community as well and are including their thoughts on some of the traits.

Though this is not an exhaustive list, we believe it embodies the large bucket items that define what a social business is.

7 Traits That Define A Company’s Business Culture As Social

1) Priority Top Down – Bar far, the most important trait that establishes social into a business culture is top down leadership. When the executive team at the top make a clear commitment to social media, done properly, it becomes clear to everyone inside as well as outside that organization. Without embracing social as a corporate priority, social media departments are clearly handcuffed and it shows. Empowering teams around social from the very top of your business not only unleashes the other traits in this post to be free to execute, it mandates the traits into every member of the company.

Tangent – Just last week on a call with our CTO (Chief Technology Officer) going over our development priorities, we were discussing something an existing Bundle Post user brought up that they really needed. Our CTO said “Well that is a current customer that has a strong need, so I think that should be a priority.” Adjustments were made to the priority list accordingly because our entire leadership has a social focus.

When the leaders of an organization have a commitment to and then drive a social culture, nothing but good will result.

Tiffany Keuhl

Keri Jaehnig

Ben Risinger

2) Consistent Communication – A social business culture isn’t just ON social media, they continually communicate internally their social priorities, what those priorities mean and how they are expected to be executed.

Timothy Hughes

Nancy Kenney

Tabatha B

3) Transparency – A social business doesn’t hide their mistakes internally or externally, instead they admit to them quickly and take steps to correct them. They don’t pretend to be perfect and portray a sense of reality of their business that is human and approachable.

Brian Vickery

Bryan Kramer

4) Responsiveness – It’s true that people want to know they are being heard, but even more importantly, they want a response. Social media is social AND media combined. When a brand has a presence but doesn’t respond to the good, bad or otherwise, people feel that they are not heard. Even worse they are made to feel they and their issues don’t matter to the brand. When a brand is responsive to their customers and prospects on social media, and do it in a timely manner, the opposite impression is made. Brands that truly understand this and have a social culture in their organization build life long customers.

SherylBionic

5) Sincerity / Authenticity – It’s one thing to go through the motions, it’s another thing to actually care. When a company has fostered a culture of social in their organization, every team member has sincerity and authenticity in what they do. Customers are never left wondering if the brand cares. It shows through the way the brand conducts their social media efforts.

richtatum
RebeccaC

6) Empathy – Social businesses teach empathy within their organization. It is a priority that all levels of the organization understand the plight of their customers before and after the sale. This means that the business educates its teams on the pain points their customers have, how their products and services ease those pains, but most importantly the importance of the customer later in the relationship. Not just the ongoing revenue opportunities down the road, but the utter importance of handling that customer properly when they have a problem.

chloe

7) Customer Priority – The social business doesn’t necessarily believe that customer is always right, but the customer is definitely a priority in the business culture and it shows.

What we find so interesting about these traits is that they are the same traits that any successful business should deploy. What I mean by that is, if the social media element was removed, the leadership, customer centric empathy within all of these traits are what great businesses have been doing for decades. Instill them in your social business culture as well and the effectiveness of your social media marketing efforts will breed loyalty, revenue and sales growth beyond your expectations!

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Filed under Engagement, Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing

Part 2 – 18 Amateur Social Media Marketing Mistakes To Avoid

More Amateur social media mistakes to avoidIn Part 1 of our series on Amateur Social Media Marketing fails, we covered some of the more common mistakes we see on a daily basis. We are continuing our series with an additional nine mistakes that you really should avoid.

Again, we want to reiterate that this post is specifically for those that are using social media for marketing. We also want to restate that there are no steadfast rules to social media marketing, just best practices.

Everything in this post is designed to educate you on things that you may want to avoid and provide you with the details as to why.

 

Here are the 9 additional amateur social media fails:

10) Inviting Followers to Connect Somewhere Else - Someone walks into your store and someone on your staff tells them, “hey, it would be great if you went to our OTHER location on 5th street.”  How well do you think that will go over with your customer? If you wouldn’t do it real life, don’t do it in social media.

Your new connection has connected with you where THEY wanted to. Make the connection valuable and interesting enough for them to WANT to visit your other connection points.

11) Not Following Others - You’re so cool that you don’t care about anyone else but yourself? #FAIL When I see a social account that has thousands of followers/friends, yet follows very few of them back, I run!

There are typically only three reasons that they do this:

a) They’ve purchased friends/followers/likes to appear important.

b) They think they are really important and it’s all about them. (they don’t care about anyone else)

c) They have no clue about social media marketing -or- relationships.

12) Mass Event Invites - So you have a new event and you want everyone to be there so you click to invite people on your friends list. STOP! It is more than acceptable to invite people to your event that you have a relationship with and/or are in the city/state of the event you are promoting, but mass inviting your entire “friends” list is a huge fail.

Would you send invitations to everyone in your address book to a local Christmas party you are holding at your home?  If you answered yes, we really need to talk…

13) Cold Facebook Page Invites - Nearly identical fail to number twelve is mass inviting people to you or your clients Facebook page. If we had a dollar for every time we had been invited to like a page for a company that is thousands of miles away from us, about a product or topic we have no interest in, or from a person that has never engaged with us in any way, we would be driving a Bentley.

Build relationships first and earn the right to pitch what you do, your other social properties and events, etc. – And for the love of everything that is Holy, target your invites to people who are geographically or demographically appropriate! (*takes deep breath)

14) Cold Group/Community Invites - Groups and communities are great for some people and niche topics, but remember that many others don’t think so. Before you invite someone to your group or community, be sure they want to be in it. Recognize that the notifications and noise that many groups generate are much more than individuals want every day. It’s not about YOU!

Build relationships with people you would like in your group and ask them if they’d like to join. Randomly inviting people to your group is such bad form and annoying to most. You’re showing your newbie again.

15) Falling Asleep - Ok, not literally, but figuratively. The best way to kill your social media engagement is to not respond when mentioned. On the same note, the slower you DO respond, the less effective you are going to be.

16) TrueTwit Validation - Probably one of the biggest Twitter newbie fails is TrueTwit. Imagine starting out a relationship with a new connection telling them that you don’t trust them and you are also too lazy to look at their bio to determine if they’re real or not. THAT’s what you are doing by using the TrueTwit app.

Read more on the fail that is TrueTwit click here

17) Klout Focused - So you got Klout game? So what… We suggest that you spend far less time focusing on your Klout score (which can easily be gamed and has no relevance to your social media marketing skill, ability or results) and focus your time on actually getting real results.

Because you have a number that makes you feel important, does not change your pocketbook. Focus on real results and the things that you should be doing to get them.

18) Cluster Posting - Since social media marketing is not your “real focus” and you’re awful busy, posting 22 pictures in a row on Instagram every morning, 14 Twitter posts that same hour and 8 Facebook posts that afternoon makes sense. At least you got your required number of posts done today, right? Not so fast.

Cluster posting as we like to call it is kind of like the person at the dinner party that never shuts up, takes over every conversation and makes everything about them. Don’t be that person. Spread your posts out across the entire day, every day. Do it consciously, with intent. You’ll lose less connections, frustrate fewer people and most importantly get way better results!

Wrapping It Up

You really need to understand the why surrounding what you are doing in your social media marketing, not just the what. Understand the effect your activity has on your connections and the things you should really avoid doing. If you are just doing something because you saw someone else do it can be a recipe for disaster.

Did you miss Part 1? Read it Here

What stood out to you in this series? Is there anything you disagree with?

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Filed under Engagement, FAIL, Followers, influence, Marketing, Relationship, Results, Social Media, Social Media Marketing, Social Selling, Strategy, Twitter, Uncategorized

18 Amateur Social Media Marketing Mistakes To Avoid – Part 1

Social media marketing isn’t rocket science, however there are an incredible amount of details, nuances and procedures that not only take time to understand, they’re changing on a daily basis. If you’re using social media for marketing, you are constantly bombarded with tools, activities and methods from thousands of people. Without knowing, we often replicate what we see others doing without regard for that persons experience, methodology or effectiveness.

This post is designed for anyone attempting to use social media for marketing. If you are a happy social networker that could care less about the marketing elements of this space, this is definitely not the post for you.

Amateur social media mistakes to avoidThough there are no specific “rules” to social media marketing, there are best practices, methods or procedures that are considered to be proper etiquette or conversely, actions that are just plain amateur. You are free to use social networks in any way you choose, but you need to understand that the activities you employ and the conduct you display says an awful lot about you, your experience, professionalism and real understanding of what social media marketing is.

One of the most frustrating things about some of these mistakes is that many that claim to be social media experts, consultants and coaches make them every single day. It never ceases to amaze us how when the inexperienced are leading the less experienced, a large population of ineffective marketers result.

In an effort to avoid furthering ineffective activity, we have put together a short list of amatuer mistakes that we see on a daily basis. Following are the first nine, which represent some of the most common newbie mistakes we see all too frequently.

Are you making any of these amateur social media fails?

1) Automated DM Pitch - We just met (connected) and you’re already trying to take us to bed? Date a little before doing beginner things like this.

2) Spam Tagging - Don’t tag people in posts that pitch your stuff or link them to your blog post. Just like in the real world, you need to EARN the right to share your stuff.

3) Group Tagging - I know you’re busy, but there’s nothing at all personal about tagging 12 people in a post to thank them all at once for sharing your post. This not only won’t build a relationship with any of them, it won’t make them want to share your stuff much longer if they’re simply grouped up with a bunch of others.

4) Keyword Spam Tagging - This is one of the biggest social media marketing fails of all. Searching for a specific keyword/phrase used in posts on a social network, then based on the keyword, tagging the account in your sales message.

Social media requires relationships and conversations. If you don’t know someone who is using a keyword or hashtag or have not yet built a relationship with them, it’s no different from sending cold spam emails. Don’t do it!

(BTW – we ALWAYS report and block for spam like this)

5) Automated Engagement/Responders - Social automation is required to be effective and efficient. However, automating “engagement-like” messages to your stream is simply amateur and everyone can tell it’s automated. It’s like being in the first century and screaming into a crowd that you have leprosy. Nobody wants to be around you.

6) Automated “Newspaper” Posts - Lazy much? Automating these useless things to your stream and tagging people in them provides what value?

Posting that something someone tweeted was so good you added it to your “rebel page”? Really? Why would I want it there and not shared or RT’d on the platform in which I posted it. If you think you’re doing anyone a favor, you should think again.

7) Automated “Top Influencer” Posts - This one seems to be used most by folks that have no strategy and really put little effort into their social media marketing. Tagging people who you never engage with in order to claim how cool, influential or engaging they are isn’t very helpful to anyone. In fact, everyone knows it’s automated and you never engage or do much else on social media anyway. We don’t recommend it.

8) Cryptic Bio - Imagine going to a live networking event and you meet someone for the first time. You ask them what they do and they avoid the question or give you a lot of cryptic gibberish. Trust is immediately in question and you will tend not to engage in a conversation with them much further.

Be clear and tell people who you are and what you do. This builds initial trust and will increase social selling opportunities that come to you automatically.

9) No Name In Bio - People connect with people, not small brands and logo’s they’ve never heard of. Now we know you are very proud of your company and want it to be huge like Starbucks or Pepsi, but you’re not yet. So treat your Twitter profile as if you are attending a live networking event. You wouldn’t put “ABC Company” on your name tag, would you? Tell people your name so they can connect with a human. Do it right and they’ll want to know what ABC Company does.

We continued with Part 2 of our post and you can Read Part 2 now. In the meantime, consider these 9 best practices and upgrade your executional efforts to things that will actually get real results.

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Filed under Engagement, FAIL, Followers, influence, Marketing, Relationship, Results, Social Media, Social Media Marketing, Social Selling, Strategy, Twitter