3 Social Media Pitfalls To Avoid

At its core, social media is about making connections. Meaningful connections that add value and purpose. With that said, social media is the most important communication channel for any brand, big or small. Take an audit of your social channels, and consider the following pitfalls to avoid.

  1. Stock photography. Just stay away from it. Your fans follow you because you have a story. A unique point-of-view that no one else can tell. Stock photography, however, is as generic as it gets, and it dilutes your brand message. Invest in your narrative by taking your own photos. Stock photos are meant to be generic enough for anyone to use, and that same image you bought could be used by another brand.

  2. Promoting (too much). We’ve all seen it… the brand that screams and shouts, ‘buy from us.’ Of course, we all have a goal to drive revenue, but there’s an appropriate time in the sales funnel to sell. Many brands forget that you need to start with awareness and story-telling before you ask someone to buy. I’ve seen so many brands who use every social channel to blast sales, coupons and direct response posts… they lack soul. It’s okay to sell, but think about the cadence of promotional posts. Remember, people won’t remember your sale, but they’ll remember your story.

  3. Talking (without listening). The first thing to note is that as a brand, you only need to speak if you have something to say. Don’t feel that you have to post every single day. Handcuffing yourself to a set number of posts each week will make your message seem too forced. Instead, listen. It’s okay to be an observer: listen to what your fans are saying to you, to other brands, and to friends. Look at competitors to see how they speak and interact with fans.IL-ABZou-u1nepOpbI8yhhCjO8ZwgigKtwiOTGG3wvM,tTkVwNSUZaZdzm9VRajELDYkM8-KMSIKu0O_jmoZztE

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And now, for a key piece of advice. Look to your favorite brands for inspiration: Take cues from their social media presence to build your own brand voice.  Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Burberry For a behind the scenes look with this iconic brand, follow them on Instagram. This account will literally take you everywhere the brand goes: world travels, fashion shows, workshops and fittings. The imagery feels like it’s shot just for Instagram, providing each follower with an insider’s access.

  • AYR This newcomer keeps their Instagram account fresh by consistently featuring influencers in their product. This tactic shows that tastemakers in key fashion circles have an affinity for AYR. When influencers are telling your story for you, it lends more credibility.

  • Nordstrom What I like about their Facebook page is that it acts as a product curator. The page curates brands and products from Nordstrom.com, but in a way that doesn’t force a hard sell. Instead, the retailer typically pairs an organic image with a link where fans can learn more.

  • Tory Burch Each season, Tory Burch creates a new board for every collection, using the board as a digital catalog. Product images employ rich pins which dynamically provide price and inventory information. If the user clicks on the pin, they are directed to the site to purchase.”

Much of the above may seem like common sense, but we all need the occasional reminder. So when you’re building your next content calendar, remember to use custom images, tell your story more than you sell, and listen as much as you speak.

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How do you engage with your customers? What channel of social media do you prefer?