11 Mistakes and Ways Why Your Social Media Fails

UPDATE: 31 May 2013

Social networking in different social platforms can be funny, but also time-consuming and sometimes disappointing. May be you thought that setting accounts with Twitter or Facebook or Pinterest – put the name of your preferred social site here – is the magic bullet for all your problems.

Sending your offers or articles to them and presto! the sales / traffic skyrocketed. Really?
I’m seeing again and again that not everybody has clear social media concepts and the correspondent results aren’t what you want.


Typical questions related to social media I find often:

  • Why would you use social media?
  • How do you know if social media is for you?

Questions, questions: Let’s see a simple answer.

In your offline life, unless you live in a lonely island, fishing and hunting to survive, you need to contact other people, for work, pleasure or just being for your friends, and then you’re doing social media offline, you’re networking. The life online is the same, the only difference are the social platforms.


11 Mistakes & Ways Why Your Social Media Fails


There are bad practices, for ignorance, for not understanding social behaviors or because somebody told you that you need to have presence at social channels, but you’ve no idea why.

First thing is doing it correctly and you’ll see the social benefits.

Today the social benefits apply to everyone, customers, companies, bloggers and the like.

For example, for bloggers here are some bonuses with your social networking.

  1.   Proper social networking strategies can improve your blog as a brand plus your expertise with your peers.
  2. Link building is a good consequence boosting your rankings in search engines.
  3. Appropriated comments can build traffic and can make solid relationships.
  4. Your way of blogging can influence, in a good form, over other bloggers


Social Media Best Practices and Which Ones You Must Avoid:


# 1 Null Real and Human Social Presence

You don’t use Twitter, Facebook or call them what you want.

I can’t believe how many bloggers don’t use them at all or yes they’ve a Twitter or Facebook account, but, only and just only, to send their own posts to them, and some cases, automatically.

Is this social networking? Nope – this is called broadcasting and for certain, your readers don’t like. Sorry, but your blog / brand will suck.
Zero interaction with other bloggers isn’t social networking. For this stuff you’ve the RSS readers to subscribe to your favorite blogs.


# 2 Never Reply to Comments on Your Blog

Let’s face it: There are bloggers that never reply to a comment at their blogs – it doesn’t matter the quantity of them.

Someone took the time to read and expressed her/his feeling about your article, and you zero! nada!

I’m not talking about spammy comments, so why don’t you answer some of them?

I know if you receive hundreds is harder one by one. But with an interesting comment you can do it. Also to some question or doubt your reader can have.

If we go to the opposite site, you receive a few, why don’t you do it? You need to build a community around your blog and engaging with your readers is a good way to accomplish it.


# 3 Never Comment at Other Blogs

You read an article that shocked you, or inspire you on that blog, but no, you don’t comment.

This is very common; stats said that the majority of people leave blogs without commenting. May be you don’t have time, but you can bookmark it and do it on other occasion or with other next posts.

It’s impossible to be commenting in everyplace but you can put aside a fraction of your time of your day to make it. Social networking with other bloggers is vital and visiting plus commenting is a good start.

Even “big fishes” of the blogosphere you see commenting at other blogs sporadically and really they are extremely busy!


# 4 Never Put All Your Social-Eggs in One Basket

Remember social platforms like Myspace? And Bebo? And Amplify, Posterous, Clipboard?

Myspace had tons of active members and now is very far of a glorious epoque remaining basically to music lovers and bands, astronomically exceeded for Facebook with more than 1000 millions of users.

Bebo can be sold by AOL and nobody knows what will happen with it.
They have passed just only few years and some social channels disappeared or a nearer to.

Can you put all your social networking efforts and presence in one place, nope! Remember Myspace and Bebo.

This is the reason why you’d be networking in diverse social networks, and don’t forget that your own blog is always your home and not Twitter or Facebook or Google Plus..to name just a few.


# 5 Never Do Social Sharing of Articles from Other Bloggers

Again, social networking is interacting with other bloggers, commenting and sharing their posts with your favorite social sites, when you’ve the chance. But no, you’re selfish and the only blog available and important is yours.

Sure when you notice that other bloggers are ignoring you, perhaps is too late and you lost your readers.


# 6 Ask For Votes but You Never Return

This is a huge pet peeve which I see often in social bookmaking sites like StumbleUpon.

Hey vote for my article! Hey plz RT my post! But after you voted, rtweeted or even commented, this blogger acts like, I don’t know you…till I need your vote again. Come on!

I can’t I take you seriously as blogger less as a person, no matter if you belong to the top A list,  B, or C of the blogosphere. We’re all bloggers and you can’t play with the time of others.


# 7 Never Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Want more traffic, meet new people? Yes, so visit other blogging-niches!

Oftentimes food bloggers should read and comment on bloggers about blogging. Blogging’s bloggers should read and comment in marketing, SEO or business ones and vice versa. You get the idea, the blogosphere is the world.

You can meet new interesting people, new concepts and all are benefits. Are you doing it?


# 8 Ignore Mentions of Your followers at Twitter or tagging at Facebook

Unless you’ve more than 100.000 Twitter followers and several thousands of Facebook‘s friends, if you receive something interesting of a follower, why are you ignoring it?

I understand, if you’ve hundreds by day, isn’t impossible, but if not, why? And the worst, you ask for a RT or ask your followers to see some ad/article how it looks on your blog and when you get the feedback from them….I didn’t know you! Hey at least they deserve a little thanks, don’t they?


# 9 Send Internal Messages but You Don’t Want any Feedback in Return

You ask something via DM (direct message) at Twitter and you unfollow immediately to not receive any answer.
This is not the first time that I’ve received this type of internal message but when I reply it – I can’t.

StumbleUpon is other example. I can set up my StumbleUpon account for “everyone”, all can send me messages, but again, several times when I reply to a message received, my answer is rejected because she/he doesn’t accept anything on return. Selfish behavior, isn’t it?


# 10 Never Use Your Real Name Anywhere

In your real life is your name “real state guru”? Neither your friends call you in that way.

Nobody can take seriously if you comment with these similar names. Blogging are relationships not some keywords and you can piss off the owner of the blog where you’re commenting, truly in a bad way!


# 11 Never Spam Forums or Other Bloggers with Spammy Comments

This is a common practice, you said: “Great post” and to worsen the things, you put an extra link in the comment area, apart of the corresponding to the url field.

Consequences are of a high probability that the spam filter will catch your comment and send it to spam folder. Or manually, the blogger will do it.

For certain, the blog’s owner won’t want to hear from you again! The same situation applies in forums, where you can be banned permanently.


Now It’s Your Turn…

Which bad social practices would you like to add? Are you doing some of them? Have you been “touched” with those behaviors?

Image by b_d_solis

84 Responses to 11 Mistakes and Ways Why Your Social Media Fails

  1. Funny thing – to arrived here while “freebrowsing” from a great (and freshly discovered) Mitz’s site tips4pc.com. Why did it catch my eye? Because, although professionally and in general terms I understand the power of positive, robust Social Media activity, personally I am actually a bit..tired(?) of all the different channels, pingbacks, tweets, likes, +1s, Vines etc. etc. And I am barely in my 30s! (Or DOES that actually make me a dinosaur in SM terms?;) So I read the post, jumped right over to comments and now wanted ask you Gera, if possible: do you think that I would have stumbled upon your very useful post and tips if I was only using social media (i.e. if Mitz did not feature a link to your site on one of her posts)? How “ghetto’ed” SM really is?

    • Karolina great you find me via Mitz tips4pc.com, and I’m with you, SM can drain all your time, perhaps I’m a T-Rex..

      SEO is vital, but is changing every day and more and more SM is affecting SERPs. So for SEO marketers, the motto is nowadays being social too, to improve your rankings.
      It’s evident when you see queries-results with your Google circles included, before the traditional SEO results.
      Social media is here, and blogging, social media marketing and content marketing, between others, is another way to make search engine optimization.

      Thanks for coming by!

  2. I know, “do what you gotta do”. And so we march on..:) It really does make me wonder though – all this time spent on SM, while Google doesn’t really pay attention unless something goes viral. I vaguely recall a Mark Cutts video or tweet from a conference in which he mentions they are only interested in Big Numbers. Plus: a) they do not full trust in/access to Facebook signals (rival company), while b) Twitter is too unreliable (still crashes quite often and is ridden with automated spam accounts)..
    I think ultimately SM creates a silly inequality: large companies with huge budgets (which already clearly do well) simply crush small organizations with their marketing muscle.

    Sorry about the rant. Guess nothing is perfect.:)

    • Yep Karolina SM with something viral is ideal, nevertheless with a lot of shares it can become interesting. If I don’t remember wrong a study from Kissmetrics revealed that more than 50 genuine tweets, Google take notice. The next steps were hundreds of tweets, not simple to accomplish.
      Agree, Facebook signals are null for Google. This is the reason why, when I’ve time, I prefer Google plus for that task.

      Big fish eat little fish, always (companies too), but with some smart-online-marketing small local companies have developed successful campaigns, e.g. with good Facebook pages and interacting with their clients – that fact increased sales. Therefore not a SEO-point but concrete results, more sales for the company. It’s easy, of course not; there are pros and cons like in everything.

      No problem about rants, love them 🙂

      Many thanks for your feedback!

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