By Emma Urbanek
Most people think social media management is just scrolling through Facebook and sending memes to your friends all day long. But that’s simply not true. A social media manager job description typically includes the following:
- Implementing a social media strategy to develop brand awareness, generate inbound traffic, and encourage product adoption.
- Leading teams that create and publish content and maintain relationships with user communities on multiple platforms.
- Reporting on the process of applying various social media tactics using a variety of digital analytics and media tracking tools.
- Collaborating with internal marketing and public relations teams to support their respective missions, ensuring consistency in voice and cultivating an engaged social media community.
That’s way more than just scrolling through your feed. I’d say the biggest mistake people make when managing social media is assuming that all you have to do is post from the company on their Facebook and LinkedIn profiles.
In this post, I share three examples of social media management mistakes you’ve probably made and how you can avoid them in the future.
1. Treating All Channels the Same
Each social media channel should be treated differently. People don’t go to Instagram for the same type of content that they expect to see on Twitter, so your business shouldn’t be posting the same content across all channels. Below is a quick breakdown of the type of content that performs best on each channel:
- Facebook: Videos and curated content
- Instagram: High-res photos, quotes, stories, and short videos
- IGTV: Longer videos, series, and educational/how-to style videos
- Twitter: News, blog posts, and GIFs
- LinkedIn: Jobs, company news, and professional content
- Pinterest: Infographics and step-by-step photo guides
Before I move to the next mistake, I also want to note that just because there are multiple social media channels doesn’t mean your business needs to be on all of them. Make sure that if you’re posting on social media, the platform makes sense for your business and your audience actually uses that platform. Keep up with the times and add these social media trends to your content this year.
2. Not Responding to Questions, Comments, or Messages
It may seem impossible to answer all the questions you receive through social media, but they shouldn’t be ignored. According to a study from Sprout Social, 70 percent of people are more likely to use a brand’s product or service if that organization responds to their questions on social media. Whether you’re fielding software issues or information requests, you can build a process or use tools to make monitoring your channels much easier.
Set up a process that includes checking comments and inboxes. If you have a large audience or multiple pages, split the work among team members but remember the golden rule—“treat others how you want to be treated”—and respond in a timely and efficient manner.
Tools are also a great way to stay on top of your management to-do list. SOCi is a social media management tool that goes above and beyond, allowing you to connect multiple social media channels and respond to comments, messages, and more all in one simple platform.
3. Responding to Trolls the Wrong Way
If you’ve retaliated and gotten into a heated argument with an internet troll, then this point is for you.
Tactfully responding to trolls is a skill in and of itself. According to Brandwatch, ninety-one percent of retail brands use two or more social media channels, and 81 percent of all small and medium businesses use some kind of social platform. This creates ample opportunities for trolls to comment on your page. Here are three options for responding to a troll:
- Don’t respond. The easiest response is not responding at all. If your response won’t be beneficial to your brand, don’t worry about sending a response. If the troll’s comment is severely negative, hide or delete it if you deem necessary. However, make sure that if you have a valid negative comment you need address it. You can always respond to the comment or if the platform allows, send a personal message asking the person to reach out to your team to address the situation.
- Be ready. Be like the Boy Scouts and always come prepared. Whether or not you think your posts will provoke strong opinions or ridicule, preparing responses ahead of time makes it easier to more quickly put these issues to rest. Come up with a list of three to five responses that your team can use.
- Use facts. By communicating the facts (including any relevant data or research) that support your company’s position, you can turn a troll’s negative post into a learning experience for the rest of your audience.
Last but not least, try to remember that trolls can present opportunities to highlight your brand’s values and expertise. Responding to negative reviews can be a challenge, but these tips can help you out.
Managing social media should be fun and exciting, as well as a way to move the needle for your organization. If you’ve made any of these mistakes, don’t worry—we all have. Just remember that without being social and interacting with your audience, social media is only media, and that’s not what people want. Try to treat each channel uniquely; respond to questions, comments, and messages in a timely manner; and manage trolls without going overboard.William Iven