You did it, you signed your small business up for a Twitter account, a Facebook account, a LinkedIn account. But nothing’s happening. You haven’t gone viral. You’ve barely qualified to get Facebook Insights. Why isn’t social media working?
First of all, going viral isn’t for everyone. In fact, if you consider all the content out there, it’s not for very many of us at all. Keep trying. And in the meantime, consider the following 10 reasons why social media may not be working for you:
- You haven’t given it enough time. Social media success doesn’t happen overnight; you shouldn’t expect that it will. Maybe you are doing everything right; even then, it takes time to see results.
- You don’t spend enough time on it. Speaking of time, social media takes time to do it right. Putting together a content calendar and following through is not something that you do in your spare time. You need to make time to plan it out and execute.
- Your timing is off. You aren’t posting when your audience is active on social media. Humans are creatures of habit; a little research will tell you when the best times to post for your audience are. Do some research to understand the right time to post content.
- You’re afraid to be human (real). Even if you’re a B2B, your customers are people; talk to them like people. “Social” is the keyword here, folks. If you aren’t using an interesting online persona, no one will want to socialize with you. Skip the marketing speak; be real.
- You aren’t posting consistently. Someone decides to follow you on Twitter only to realize you haven’t tweeted in four months. Why follow? Same with Facebook. Maybe they do follow you but forgot about you. Keep active to stay top of mind. Consistent content is also critical for good rankings, SEO and the likelihood that others will continue to see your posts.
- It’s all about you. The beauty of social media is that is allows for conversations between many. Think of your content with the 80/20 rule in mind. 80% of the time, make it about what you can give to your audience. What need can you solve for them? What are their pain points and how can you offer (free) tips and advice? Use the other 20% to promote your business, cause or organization in a way that your audience will appreciate. It’s not about the hard sell.
- Creativity is lacking. Is it always the same old status update? Mix it up with photos, videos, infographics, links.
- You aren’t creating original content. You need to give fans and followers something they can’t get anywhere else. Curating content is great, but you still need to be creating compelling, original content to keep your followers and fans hooked.
- You aren’t cross-promoting your channels. Maybe they love you on Twitter but have no idea you’re on Facebook and LinkedIn. Spread the word about where you’re at, and make sure when they get there they like what they see.
- You don’t have a strategy. This is a big one. For social media to be effective, you need to have a strategy. You need to know what you are trying to accomplish and how. You need strategic, measurable goals. Without a strategy, how would you even know if you are succeeding?
Social media success is a lot like exercise. Anyone can do it, but doing it poorly won’t yield stellar results. Doing social media well takes time, commitment and realistic goals. Start with a few of the items and assess your current social media efforts. Then work your way through and see what changes you can make in order to really drive home your key messages and provide awesome content for your audiences. Great investment up front will yield great results.