At least once a week, the hashtags “canceled” and “___isoverparty” are trending on Twitter. The power social media has is very evident here, and a simple online marketing mistake can cost you your company. It is tough to bounce back once you are canceled,or once you get a bad reputation. I will share with you some of the most common online marketing mistakes to avoid, according to my experience and some of the top marketing agencies in Los Angeles.
1. Ignoring or Neglecting Your Customers
One of the critical parts of building a successful business or brand is the customers. Your primary aim for online marketing should be to achieve customer satisfaction, and if your customers aren’t happy, then you are getting nowhere. Marketing agencies in Los Angeles report that 80% of all customers use social media to reach out to companies. So essentially, social media is a vital part of online marketing and brand image. A lack of response leads the customer to believe that they are not essential, and most will turn away from using what you advertise after being ignored. Social media pages of airlines are usually an excellent example of online marketing. Below, this customer may have even tweeted this as a joke, but the “JetBlue Airways” twitter response is sure to have made them feel heard and appreciated. It’s things like this that get people to stay loyal and always come back to you. This is also something that is sure to get around, as people love sharing their experiences with companies, whether it be to praise them or to warn others to stay away. One bad customer experience can be fatal to a smaller brand, so be sure to avoid this common online marketing mistake.
2. Being Too Pushy
It is essential that you are not too pushy with sales. A common online marketing mistake is that people often consider social media as an advertising medium when it should be a platform to engage customers while also promoting your brand and increasing awareness. People follow a page to stay updated, so you should provide them with engaging and intriguing content to keep them coming back. If all your posts are urging customers to make a purchase or are directly promoting your product, customers will be annoyed and turn away. Not to mention, too many sales posts portray a lack of originality and professionalism. Social media is based on building relationships, and if your page fails to do that, then your followers will surely leave.
But by following this rule, you must also make sure that you do not overwhelm followers with too much unrelated content. It is great to post memes and funny posts every few posts, but if you don’t promote your products, enough followers will unfollow, deeming your page purposeless. A small tip is to use the 80/20 rule if you’re unsure what to post. 80% of posts should be of some value to the audience, and 20% should be direct promotional activity. Once you start to be more active, you will get the hang of it and realize what your audience prefers to see.
3. Being Too Formal/Informal
Just because another business is “popping off” because of the brand’s funny or sarcastic personality, doesn’t mean you will too. What may work for another brand will not always work for you. You shouldn’t be striving to be one specific adjective, such as funny. Instead, you should focus on being open and friendly while maintaining your brand personality. Try to create and keep a steady online personality, so people will always know what to expect. In order to create a brand personality, you must thoroughly understand your target audience. A witty personality may attract millennials but will usually be off-putting to older customers. Being too casual with customers may also make you seem unprofessional.
At the same time, it is crucial to remember that social media is popular because it is friendly and casual. Everyone knows there’s a person behind a brand social media and not a robot, so that is how you should come across. Using traditional media terms such as “Sir/Madam” or “To whomever it may concern” will make you seem dated and lacking. It’s essential to keep the customer feel comfortable but still give them the impression that they are speaking to someone who is a professional who knows what they’re doing. A small tip used by marketing agencies in Los Angeles is when responding to someone online is to look at their page and see what their name is listed as, and respond with “Dear Name.” This makes it more personal yet also keeps it professional. Whichever personality approach you choose, consistency is key. It is most important that you stick to one brand mindset and develop it without drastically changing it.
4. Having too much Presence
More is not always better. Being an active presence on all social media platforms is not only going to be time-consuming and difficult but also purposeless. It is much wiser to spend your time perfecting your brand personality on two or three social media platforms than it is to provide mediocre content on many. Deciding which platform to use requires knowledge of your content and target audience. Imagine what your average customer looks like, their habits, and their daily activities. Take the time to build marketing personas, which is a sketch of a segment of your audience and should include some basic details such as age, gender, salary, location, and education. Using these personas, you should be able to find research regarding which social media platform they tend to use the most. You should also consider the type of content you are going to be putting out. For example, if your content is an image- and graphics-based, then you should consider using Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. A small tip from Los Angeles marketing agencies is always to attach images, even if your content depends on the text. Pictures always catch the reader’s eye first and attract them to the content. If your content is text-based, such as offering professional advice, then considering using Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
But, keeping all this in mind, it is also important to maintain a presence on the big three of social media, which are Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Even if you aren’t actively posting on these pages, you should still keep it updated, and it should have all the links to your more active social media pages. These “big three” are what usually come up when a brand is searched on Google, so try to lead a new customer to your more active pages through all your more dormant ones.
5. Not Tracking your Progress
To get the most you can out of online marketing, you should always analyze the results, and this includes the negative and the positive. This will help you in many aspects. You will understand if you’re reaching your target audience or not. You might be surprised at the customers you reach with your content, and it may be the polar opposite of your expected target audience. If you can’t choose what social media platform to use most, then try keeping a few pages on different platforms active and assess the analytics. If two of your pages are getting more attention, then it is time to leave the rest and amp up the content on these platforms. Online marketing can be a tricky area at the beginning, so it is crucial that you analyze your results and make changes to your strategy every week or so. It is also important to look at the big picture. For example, lots of likes mean nothing if you aren’t getting any comment, or your engagement blade is staying low. If, after some time, your account is growing, but your revenue isn’t, then it is time to alter your online marketing strategy.
6. Not Accepting Negative Feedback
Social media is all about interactions. It is a back-and-forth conversation between a brand and a customer. Reading and responding to negative comments and criticism will give you more insight into what the customers think of you. It will show you where you can improve, and what will bring in more customers. If you respond to a customer voicing their negative opinion about an aspect of your product, it will make the customer feel heard and appreciated, ensuring that they stay loyal even after an unpleasant experience. Before the age of social media marketing, a brand would’ve spent lots of money on conducting market research with surveys and questionnaires in order to gather customer opinions. But now brands receive free reviews in the form of comments and tweets, so you should always seize this opportunity. It can also severely harm your brand if you don’t. Jeffree Star, a famous beauty Youtuber, and owner of his own cosmetic brand has recently been under fire of accusations from fans. Apparently, Jeffree Star blocks everyone who voices an unfavorable opinion or complaint about the cosmetic products. This also includes fans who have supported him for years yet aren’t satisfied with a single product; they are also immediately blocked. Jeffree even goes as far as to harshly respond to those complaining about hair in their products, which lead to him losing many fans and gaining a horrible reputation.
7. Online Marketing: Posting Inconsistently
This is a huge online marketing mistake that includes a few aspects within itself. Here are some of those.
Posting Similar Content
Posting alike content constantly will leave people with the impression that the brand is boring, and there isn’t much creativity there. You should always maintain a consistent personality, but that doesn’t mean posting similar content all the time. Instead of posting links or random quotes all the time, take the time to analyze your target audience and stay in tune with it. Posting similar content, you are sure to lose your whole following in a very short amount of time. Your page should portray a message, should advertise your products while also being fresh and exciting, and should keep your followers engaged.
If you find yourself stuck or running out of ideas, then spend some time studying pages of competitors, and compare them to yours. Pick out what their best qualities are and use it to your advantage while also giving it a personal twist.
Posting Too Much
Everyone hates those irritating brands that keep putting out content on their social media platforms, to the point where it fills up the customers’ timelines. Posting too much at once is a terrible idea, and will lead to you losing all your followers. Customers do not want to go on social media and just see posts from one brand constantly. If you keep posting, a customer will most likely unfollow or overlook all your posts. Wherein posting similar content will make a customer simply overlook the posts, posting too much will seriously annoy the customer, and this will likely stick in their mind, and they will avoid making any purchases from you.
Not Posting Enough
Updating once in a while is NOT going to do the trick. In a constantly developing world, you need to stay on your toes and watch out. If you aren’t putting content on a customer’s timeline, then that means that the slot is taken up by your competitors. There are so many brands and pages out there that if you don’t constantly remind the customer of your brand, they will most likely forget. It will also make your page seem careless and unprofessional. According to many marketing agencies from Los Angeles, if a customer goes onto a page to see that the latest post is older than two days, then they will most likely not follow.
What to avoid in Online Marketing
To avoid all the above-mentioned problems, I would recommend creating a content calendar and sticking to it. This calendar should include the types of posts, captions, dates, and times. Once your engagement grows, and you realize you’re on the right track, then you can be less strict with yourself.
Online marketing is a tough area to master, but you must understand that it holds opportunities and growth possibilities that you will not find anywhere else. By avoiding these common mistakes and staying on track you are sure to see improvement for your brand.