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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 18 August 2018

Social media mistakes you can avoid for businesses

When managing business accounts, owners should carefully consider the impression they want to make

Twitter allows you to see how often that hashtag has been used in the past hour. LOIC VENANCE/FAP
Twitter allows you to see how often that hashtag has been used in the past hour. LOIC VENANCE/FAP

Ten years ago if we told people that social media management will be a full-time job, they might have laughed at us. As simple as they are to use, managing a number of platforms for businesses can be quite challenging. With so many platforms and changing algorithms, and hashtags to choose and use, you can easily feel that things are getting out of control.

I spoke to my colleague Sarah who manages different social media accounts for our clients and asked her about the common mistakes that people make when managing their brand accounts, and what should business owners avoid doing on social media:

Overusing hashtags

The first time I was introduced to hashtags was on Twitter. Their main purpose is to allow people from all over the world to connect with each other over an interesting subject. Many people use hashtags in a form of a sentence, such as “#I #went #to #the #mall, which is wrong. In addition, business owners should not overuse hashtags. It’s not appealing to the eyes, and will look very automated. When you want to share a hashtag on travelling, for example, you can search for it and see what hashtags have been used. Go for the one that is most shared. On Instagram, you can tell by the number of posts per hashtags. Twitter allows you to see how often that hashtag has been used in the past hour.

Not engaging with users

Personally, I have seen many brands and business owners refrain from interacting with their followers on social media or answering their questions. That’s poor customer service. If you do not interact or address their questions/concerns, you may be losing them for good. According to Sprout Social Research, 70 per cent of people are more likely to use a brand’s product or service, if the brand responds to them on social media.That does not only apply to those who have questions, but also to those who praise your brand. Take time to reply. A social media influencer-turned-beauty guru, Huda Kattan, is a great example. She shares the videos of people who use her beauty products, and replies to their comments. Her brand is now one of the fastest growing brands in the world.

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Posting at the wrong time

Timing is key when it comes to social media postings. Post in the middle of the night and barely anyone will see it. Posting your content at optimal timings during the day, not only will increase engagement, but also expose more people to your brand. It depends on the platform and the country, but different studies, including those from the Huffington Post and Quintly, have revealed that a good time to post on Facebook is at 1 pm and 3 pm.

Over-posting

While it’s great to be online and active, posting 20 times a day may result in you getting unfollowed. It will seem like you are spamming your followers’ pages. Posting one to two times a day at the right time will increase engagement.

Joining all platforms

Every social media account that you are active on will mean extra work and time. Before deciding to be everywhere, you need to see if it makes sense for you to be on five channels versus one. Say that you manage a financial company, do you really need SnapChat? In your case,

LinkedIn may make more sense.

Not Uploading videos

From a personal experience, when our clients upload video content, the post has a higher engagement and viewership. Last year videos were a huge marketing trend that carried onto this year. We highly recommend clients to upload behind-the-scenes videos that provide the audience with a story about their brand.

Poor grammar

Although social media uses casual language, it also doesn’t mean that it’s acceptable that your posts have multiple grammar and spelling mistakes. Your page is the window to your business, and a bad impression like that may indicate unprofessionalism and negligence.

Manar Al Hinai is an award-winning Emirati writer who manages her branding and marketing consultancy in Abu Dhabi

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