Common Social Media Mistakes Committed by Small Business Owners

| February 25, 2014 | 6 Comments

Relying on social media as a useful and viable tool for building their brand and increasing visibility can be a great idea for small businesses. That’s because setting up accounts on social media platforms costs nothing and it pays rich returns. This makes various small businesses rush to social media and end up making many mistakes that can be avoid easily. Below are some of the most common mistakes made by small businesses.

Unfinished profiles

It is quite common to find incomplete profiles among business social media accounts. This is partly owing to the fact that small businesses can often not afford to have a staff dedicated only to social media; so profiles are completed halfway and left. To avoid this, determine and set up the ideal social media platforms that you can use and stick with them. Some social media are on the decline so they may not be the model to move forward. Choose platforms that are trending.

The buck stops at Twitter and Facebook


While it’s true that Twitter and Facebook are giants and cannot be missed but small businesses must not ignore other platforms like Google+, Instagram, and Pinterest either. It’s a common notion with many businessmen that other platforms are not worth their time and effort. For a business to truly benefit from social media, a business must make use of multiple social networks.

Individual’s promotion and not the business’

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Another major mistake that small business owners make is that they promote themselves in social media rather than their business. Many entrepreneurs end up spending most of the time in promoting themselves as a brand when they should actually be updating information, resources and education online that will be useful to their customers and consumers. Promoting oneself on the social media is a good idea but one must maintain a personal account for that. You will come across as ignorant if you use your business account to promote anything except for business marketing or promotion.

Message going on a different tangent

Even if you have a lot of content, you need to regroup it together in a useful and organized manner or you will end up losing some of your credibility because you will be vague about the message you want to convey. It is difficult to have a consistent message and trying to avoid repetition and predictability at the same time even more difficult. So the best way to walk this fine line is by ensuring that all your published messages give a personal connection to your business’ goals and mission statement and makes consumers relate to you personally.

Not enough personal connect

Small business entrepreneurs more often than not focus only on their work without really understanding the importance and value of relationships built on social media. Your consumers and customers will be more loyal to you if they feel they are connected with you personally. Many business do not respond to a direct message through social media. This can prove to be a grave and costly mistake. A personal touch while communicating will earn you extra brownie points with users.

Shrugging off negative feedback

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For anyone with a following, getting negative feedback is a given because the number of people using social media to talk with and about brands is ever increasing. Ignoring any kind of feedback, even if negative, reflects badly on you. Believe it or not, customers read bad and negative comments first when they visit your social media page. So as a professional as well as courteous thing to do, you must always address negative feedback and aim to solve the problem.

Not updating current information

All the information that your small business is posting via social media, must be current and updated. Post authentic and updated things like product offerings, pricing structures, or even team photos. If you yourself are hard pressed for time and resources to keep your professional social media presence updated, then you can outsource it to another company. This will be beneficial since it will keep your small business connected to the treasure trove of opportunities and potential customers online.

Failing to reply to customers

Just like you would when you get a query personally or on the phone, all small businesses must respond to questions or comments posted on their social media page. When your query is ignored by a small retailer it gives the impression that the account has been created just for the heck of it instead of being a method of contacting quickly. Not replying to queries will not just waste people’s time but is also rude and such let down customers won’t care for shopping with your business again if they feel ignored.

Not scheduling automated messages properly

If you fail to schedule your automation properly, there will be instances when there will be no posts on your page for hours and then it will be flooded with scores of messages within a few minutes. This will take away from the personal touch and people will easily realize that your page is automated and that can be very off putting because it defeats the real purpose of this whole exercise, which is actual engagement.

Assuming that social media marketing is easy and gives quick results

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When promoting a business or brand through social media, most small businesses tend to think that it is an easy exercise or that the social media marketing strategies will start bearing fruits instantaneously. But, as is the case with anything else in life, you need to put in a lot of hard work and apply a flawless and precise strategy for your social media marketing campaign to bring in positive and gratifying results. You are required to keep updating the information you post, be proactive, interact with your customers, and do everything in your capacity to convert viewers into potential customers.

When it comes to making or breaking a brand especially where small businesses are concerned, social media can go either ways. You cannot superficially make a marketing strategy using social media but need to think the plan through and post sensibly. More importantly, never ignore the customer or let him feel that you don’t care for him. If you get these things right, nothing can stop your small business from catapulting to the big league.

Author bio:

I am Ramya Raju a freelance web design writer with 8 yrs of extensive blogging experience on a variety of online publishing and social-media platforms. I generally write high-quality articles on travel, photography, SEO, Web design, English courses, and generic topics too. I’m also an extrovert with a passion for photography, anthropology and travelling to different countries to learn the culture and living of the local inhabitants.

Ramya Raju
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Category: Social Media

About the Author (Author Profile)

Praveen Rajarao is a Software Tech Lead and in his spare time blogs on his website – and His topics range from blogging to technology to affiliate programs and making money online and how-to guides.

Comments (6)

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  1. thanks for pointing out these mistakes. unfinished profile and not updating are the worst for a business.
    Priyanka Jain recently posted…Sinhagad Fort Pune Attraction, Distance Map, Route, TimingMy Profile

  2. Twitter:
    Hey Ramya,

    Great points!

    I think each of them are important on it’s own; can’t ignore any of them (Why should we? It will help us…and if we don’t follow them, it will cost us more time and effort in the future).

    So, when we are doing it, let’s try to do it right!

    I have made a few of these mistakes in the past (I am glad that I did…those are lessons I will never forget!). Anyways, thank you for sharing them :) Appreciate it!

  3. Mayura says:

    Hi Ramya,

    I agree with Jeevan. Excellent points indeed :)

    I’d like to quote your own statement ~ “Many entrepreneurs end up spending most of the time in promoting themselves as a brand when they should actually be updating information, resources and education online that will be useful to their customers and consumers.”.

    I don’t promote myself but I felt kinda guilty for not updating information when it comes to blogging. I’m not blogging for business, but been spending a lot of time with marketing and other aspects. Hence I slowed down myself a bit until my top priorities being satisfied and gonna focus more on delivering value. Thanks for the reminder! I needed it :)

    You both have a fabulous week there, Ramya and Praveen :)

    Mayura recently posted…Record and Share Your Screen Instantly with ScreenrMy Profile

  4. munna says:

    Hello Praveen . Nice post . I have profile on many social media sites but I did not do any thing tricky like making my profile professional and acting with other users. From today I am gonna do this and will let you know if it works for me.
    munna recently posted…How to schedule Google Plus posts offlineMy Profile

  5. vino says:

    Hi ramya,

    Worthy points. Even I do some of the above said mistakes.But now I have understood about the importance of social media and I hope rid of these misatkes soon.Thanks for sahring this
    vino recently posted…Effective tips to attract more followers on twitterMy Profile

  6. Thanks for sharing this useful information about social media mistakes, hope it helps me….

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