Stop! Doing These 3 Things on Social Media

You may feel like you are on top of it because you have integrated social media into your marketing and communication. But using outdated tactics may be ruining your impact.

Social media is constantly evolving. Tactics that worked in the past are no longer effective. Worse, they may work against your efforts to engage online.

Stop wasting time and resources on these social media tactics:

Don’t focus on follower numbers.

The quantity of people who follow you is not nearly as important as the quality. You are not in a competition to gain the most followers. Your focus should be on connecting with the right people.

Do follow the people you want to be connected with. Hopefully, they will reciprocate.

Then, spend your energies on providing great content. Couple that with engaging with your followers – liking their comments, sharing their content, answering their questions, etc.

Now you are on the right track to building the right community rather than focusing on numbers.

Don’t automate.

It’s so tempting to set up auto responses. It’s also completely counter to why people connect with you on social media!

Your social community wants and expects personal contact. Automated responses at best don’t give people the connection they crave. At worst, they make them walk away.

Automated, generic messages are a big turn-off. They signal that your only concern is getting people into a pipeline rather than creating a real connection and relationship.

Don’t hashtag and link excessively.

Unfortunately, too many brands still think that the best way to get the most out of a post is to stuff it full of links to their products or services and hashtags.

Link to what you want to sell! Use hashtags to get more eyeballs! Neither is really your best approach. Hashtags and links actually make posts harder to read and understand, completely defeating your reason for posting on social in the first place.

Further, many social platforms are now down-ranking posts that link off that platform, decreasing your organic reach. For example, a Facebook post that has a link to your website, will not be shown to as many people as a post with no link. That’s also works against the whole reason for posting.

Your social approach needs to evolve.

Don’t get complacent on social media. Platforms change rules and algorithms all the time. People’s expectations also change. Your social media strategy needs to keep pace.

Give Search Engines More than Keywords

The techniques to optimize your web pages for search engine optimization (SEO) change all the time.

There’s more to SEO than just dropping keywords into your text. Google and other search engines are constantly seeking ways to deliver the search results users want. The result is ever-changing guidelines for SEO.

Here’s a refresher that you can use to make sure your SEO efforts are on target with today’s rules.

Start with Keywords

It is still important to know your keywords. These are the words and phrases people use to when they want to get to you and the content you have to offer. Use keywords in navigation, titles, text, image alt tags, etc .,where they make sense.

Don’t stuff your pages with keywords just to increase the number of times they are used. A page density of between 1-3% will have an impact.

More Page Factors Influence SEO

There are more factors that impact the rank of your website and pages on search engines. Pay attention to these in addition to keywords:

  • Optimize for mobile search: Google penalizes pages that aren’t optimized well for mobile. Mobile traffic likely accounts for half or more of your web traffic, so you can’t afford to not be seen well on the mobile search and screen.
  • Page meta description and image alt tags: These two tags are not seen on your page, but they are used by search engines. Keep the meta description to less than 160 characters and make sure it says something that will attract visitors. Use at least one relevant keyword in image alt tags.
  • Internal links:  Link to relevant content across your own pages.
  • External links: Link to quality, relevant sites that are not your own. And-ask those sites to link to you.
  • Business basics: Privacy policy, contact us, and terms of service pages signal to search engines that you are a legitimate business and contributes positively to SEO.
  • Quick page loads: If your pages aren’t loading in 4 seconds or less, your search engine rank will suffer. Speed issues can be cause by several factors, from poor coding, to large images, to web hosting restrictions. You may need technical help to get to the root of slowness issues, but it will be worth the investment if SEO is important to you.

5 Tactics to Deal With Decreasing Organic Impact

Organic reach on social media is how well your posts perform without any ad spending. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter all continue to reduce organic reach. That means we need to change our social media strategies. 

Facebook has been reducing organic reach for pages and brands for some time. Users get more content from friends and family and less from company pages.

The same is happening on other social platforms. The approaches that got you plenty of engagement in the past aren’t going to be as effective anymore. Your social media posts aren’t reaching as many people.

It’s time for a new approach. Here are 5 tactics to consider.

Create unique content for each platform.

Don’t post the same thing on different platforms. Your content should be tailored for the platform it appears on. That will make sure you’re using the vocabulary and norms that are expected on those platforms.

Take time to understand what your followers expect on each social channel and meet that need. On Twitter, they likely want breaking news and event information. On Facebook, they want to see the human side of your brand and to connect with your brand story. On LinkedIn, it is all about the business part of your business!

Make sure the content you post is thoughtful and relevant to your audience. The better your content, the more likely people will share it and engage with it. Most importantly, great content will make them want to come back.

On all platforms, text, images and video are effective. But the way that information is presented should differ.

Publish consistently.

Posting regularly keeps you on your users’ radar. Consistent posts make you a part of your users’ experience and expectations. It lets them know you are engaged and relevant, now.

Social algorithms watch who engages with your content. Consistent posts give the robots more data and more reason to share your content.

Accept that you need to pay to play.

Your social strategy needs to include paid efforts. Period.

Social media ads, sponsored content and boosted posts are among the best ways to reach your audience. Paying to promote content that resonates with your target audience will help you boost engagement.

Ads can help you gain insights into your audience and what they want. Each platform has metrics built in that help you understand who is engaging with your (paid) content that goes beyond the metrics for organic posts.

What content makes the best ads? The content that does well organically. If it’s gaining views, shares and impressions without paying, imagine how well it’s going to do with greater visibility.

Experiment with video.

Even if live video becomes less trendy in the future, it’s still worthwhile to find ways to share content beyond static images and words. Try out different content formats like video, live video, and chats to find the way that your followers prefer to be reached.

Feature content from others.

Social media is about being social. That means sharing other people’s content and not just your own. You are not the only place that has information your audience wants. Share (also called “curate”) content that you know interests your audience.

Sharing relevant content establishes you as a thought leader that knows what’s happening in the industry. It helps to keep your audience interested in what you post.