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The biggest mistake businesses make with social media

16 Jan 2017

Social media is a powerful marketing tool that many businesses use effectively to reach new customers and build closer relationships with existing customers. Some businesses fail to make social media work, however. They pick a platform, set up a page, get as many followers as they can, and put up some posts. Hardly anyone sees the posts, however, and accounts suddenly become inactive.

So, what's going wrong? Why does social media work for some businesses, and not for others?

Often, it comes back to one core problem: businesses regard social media as a free platform, and they refuse to invest in properly maintaining their accounts.

Of course, it is free to set up accounts and pages on all the main social media sites. You can also post content to those sites for free, much in the same way that you use social media personally. That is where the correlation between using social media personally, and using social media for business, ends.

To understand this fully, you have to consider the two main goals of a social media platform:

To make money

Social media platforms are businesses with a business model that does not charge users. They have to charge someone, and that someone is you – businesses who want to reach the social media platform’s audience.

To keep users engaged

Social media platforms can’t achieve the above goal if they do not have an active user base. For them to have an active user base, they have to give users content they want to read.

This means you must focus your efforts in a way that works with, and not against, the two primary goals of a social media platform. This can be achieved either through paying for ads on social media, or investing in content creation. To do either effectively, you need professional social media managers who understand the platforms and how they work. This will ensure you don’t waste money with content or ads that target the wrong people or fail to engage your audience.

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