Your Social Media Marketing Is A Train Wreck

Pretty strong title, even coming from me, but I have some frustration this morning that has been building for some time. This morning it kind of came to a head.

If you don’t know this, I want to be very clear… Social media marketing is not a direct marketing or push marketing platform. Done properly, social media marketing is about relationships. Connecting and engaging with your target market that results in trust and digital friendships.

I frequently get the social media newbie situations where only out of inexperience, requests are made for follows, article sharing or just plain sales pitches upon connecting. This I understand and expect, so I try to be very patient and helpful with these folks. I attempt to improve their understanding of social media so they do not damage themselves too badly, or for too long.

I also have a few folks that are not social media professionals, but use social media for marketing, that DM me frequently. The primary engagement they have with me is DM’ing requests for me to tweet out one of their blog posts. I try to help people and want to share stuff that is valuable to my audience, however I am not your spam engine. One person does this almost weekly, even though I have explained to them multiple times that I will not be doing it and why. It would be different if attempts were made to build a relationship and have conversations with me, but they just don’t seem to get that quite yet.

Now this is where my patience runs out. Inexcusable Social Media Marketing Train Wrecks, I have very little patience for. To me, this is the social media marketing or consulting company that do the above, when they should clearly know better. Are you serious?

Your blog is about how social media marketing works properly, and you talk about social media relationships on your website and how your firm develops them for your clients. Most of what I see you saying is somewhat accurate, yet you do not practice it with your own accounts and weekly mention me and others to push your latest post for us to send out for you. What??

It’s been months since you engaged with me on Twitter. You aren’t engaging with anyone on Facebook and are just constantly posting stuff with no conversation and interaction. I have given you feedback on your incredibly lengthy blog posts and the way overly used, meaningless images you insert into every single post, and you ignore me. Stop the madness! Your Social Media Marketing Is A Train Wreck! My only hope is that you are unable to sign anymore clients whose brand you would likely also destroy.

Check yourself social media people. Practice what you preach!

*Maybe I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, but I feel many marketers need to understand this and how damaging it can be to their brand. Before you hire a social media agency, review the company’s social account feeds and more importantly the executive’s personal social account feeds. If they aren’t doing it themselves, they will not be able to do it for you!


27 thoughts on “Your Social Media Marketing Is A Train Wreck

  1. Hey Robert,

    This happens on many social media platforms, not only twitter but twitter has been king for a while due to the simplistic way of just getting a free account and people practically can start spamming users from day one.

    That’s why many others say that twitter is lost already but I think it is not.

    As long as there are still users that actually ENGAGE other users and maintain interaction, or in other words, use twitter what it was meant for in the first place, I don’t see any problems with it.

    It is fast, it is reliable, it is simple and a single tweet can have a massive snowball effect so the viral aspect is maintained as well.

    I agree with you that people are just ruining it for the rest of us but that like you said, only shows the lack of professionalism.

    Anyone with a decent knowledge of proper social media should be able to be aware of this and also recognize these social media “experts”.

    Very cool article my friend and no, you didn’t wake up on the wrong side of the bed, people who use twitter correctly feel exactly the same about this.

    Take care and have a great day! ;-)


    1. Oh you are so correct. It does happen on all platforms and not just Twitter. This repeat offender just got to me today and finally let off steam. Thanx for the support Sergio!

  2. You tell them Rob!

    I have some empathy in my game where people believe the computers should drive themselves… I would hate to take a car journey with them…

    Three more sleeps and Santa is here, eat, drink and be Merry… A chance to remove the dangerous drivers from our minds.



  3. I deal with customers on an almost daily basis who think that social media is going to bring them instant sales. These people are usually the ones we decide not to work with because there is no way of managing their expectations. I spend almost as much time in my job educating folks on the proper ways to utilize social media as I do actually managing the campaigns. I chalk it up to the fact that is a fairly new endeavor for most businesses and just hope that people will become more educated as time goes on. Otherwise there is no hope!

    Merry Christmas to all!

  4. I try to explain that this isn’t like a direct mail piece because a 2% response rate is going to cost you more than just postage. The goal is to build a great customer relationships right out in the open where it can bring real value to your company. To do that you have to work hard and give a crap about your business. Sadly, I find the second one is not guaranteed.

    1. You are do right Ethan. Some just like old ways that require less care. Fortunately, this industry is long-term and ultimately those less than caring ideals and business owners will be out of both! :-)

  5. Great post Robert. Part of me says Ouch! Now I’m scrutinizing all my own approaches.The key I think that really needs to be understood by marketers is not to take this approach because it helps marketing but to do this because you really care about those who are your customers. When the motive ir right everything falls into place.

    1. Exactly! You would never call acquaintances and do this sort of thing, yet so many do it social media. First you need to build a relationship, then they WANT you to ask them for help and/or are willing to help without being asked because you know each other and have a friendship. If you wouldn’t do it IRL, don’t in SM. :-)

  6. I got all excited reading this because I have a blog post draft focusing on very similar issues waiting to be finished. My frustrations are different than yours because I don’t have the followers you do on either my biz account (CaptivateQC) or personal (katiiisays) so I don’t get a lot of people outright asking me to share their stuff. But I’m trying to learn from those (like you) with experience and success doing what I want to do so when I see “social media marketers” forgetting the social part and just sending out self-promotional Tweets. A few in particular auto send out links to their “latest blog post…” but have the same three blog posts claiming to be the latest that are tweeted 3 or 4 times every day. I’m all for sharing your content but sharing the same posts with the same tweets EVERY day?!?! How is that benefiting your followers or your clients?
    Ok, so I’m off my soapbox. Thanks for the post, I enjoyed hearing your perspective as someone who’s successfully doing what I want to be doing.

  7. Reblogged this on The Red Elm and commented:
    Thanks @JazMans on Twitter for pointing someone to this post. I’m about ready to block said person. My favorite lesson to EMs when teaching them about social media is, “It’s not all about you!”

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