Ecommerce businesses have much to gain by integrating social media channels into their general web presence. We all know that Facebook and Twitter serve as general hangouts, but they also help build your brand, strengthen your community, and generate quality leads to your website. While social media is a great way to keep a constant conversation with your customers, it’s also a convenient venue for customers to rant about poor experiences. How your business responds to complaints on social media should be taken seriously. One wrong move can cost you. Below are five social media blunders that are commonly made by businesses and how to overcome them:
1) Making the conversation a one-way street
Facebook and Twitter are great channels to create dialogues between your brand and target consumers. However, you need to make sure that the conversation is a two-way street. In other words, you need listen to every bit of what your customers are saying. You need to speak to your customers’ concerns (and quickly!) and not just talk at them. This means closely monitoring your direct messages, comments, mentions, and wall posts. By doing that, you will gain a better understanding of what types of content will appeal to your customers and show them that you truly care.
2) Post overload
While some may think that posting more will help bring in more sales or engagement, it really may cause fans to unlike the page or hide it. Once you take the time to build relationships and trust with your customers, the opportunity to share your business will be a natural by-product. Spread out your posts and plan them accurately throughout the day. The general rule of thumb for getting good engagement on a Facebook page should post 3-5 times per day. Twitter is completely different, however, since it is a real-time communications tool. It’s recommended to tweet 10-15 times per day. This way, you can stay relevant with your fans and not bombard their feeds.
3) Not anticipating questions or feedback customers may have
If a customer issue is called out on Twitter, respond at warp speed, and make things right. Don’t wait a day or two to respond to a problem or question. You may not have all the answers right away, but do let customers know that you’re working on it. Be prepared for whatever comments and concerns may come your way via social media, respond transparently, and be genuine. Also, don’t copy and paste the same comments to different customers. Respond to every comment and tweet individually. People like it when real people, representing brands, tweet them—not automation.
4) No lead generation strategy
Social media provides a meaningful channel to build rapport with your customers, but at times some businesses forget that it’s also a great tool to drive traffic to their website. Experiment with various messages, call-to-actions, and lead generation tactics to see what resonates with your fans. For example, have your blog posts feed onto your Facebook and Twitter timeline, have opt-in posts to get your newsletter and updates, and most importantly, create relevant posts that add value to your customers’ day.
5) Posting irrelevant content
Cats, memes, politics, sensitive issues…while they’re interesting, keep them off your social media timeline. One of the fastest ways to get people trash-talking about your brand over social media is to post poorly-timed, offensive comments about sensitive topics. Every once in awhile it may be okay to post something to make people laugh, but in general, posting irrelevant content can weaken your brand value and your company’s reputation.
Keep in mind that your social media strategy is not just another advertising platform, but rather, it’s an opportunity to learn more about your customers and connect with them organically. Really listen to what customers are saying—they may have an insight you’re missing.