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Social Media Expert Helping Small Business Succeed Online

If your company is getting traction on social media, you’re likely to be inundated with requests from other companies looking for your help.

The question is: how do you know who to trust?

This article will walk you through the three most common mistakes made by small businesses when using social media.

1. The first mistake is lack of consistency

The first mistake when it comes to writing a blog is lack of consistency. The most important thing when it comes to building an audience is consistency. If you can help people know when to expect new content from you, then they’ll start to build it into their routine and they’ll start to expect new content from you on certain days or at certain times.

It’s a good idea to show your clients a template before you begin writing your blog, just so that you can get an idea of where their content will end up. But you’re not limited to the template!

You can personalise it however you want. I like to treat my real-life blog as a survey of my city. I survey my city’s residents about their opinions and concerns. One of the best ways for me to get personal (and interesting) is to live blog tour of my city.

I’m not sure where this strategy comes from, but I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. The second mistake that I see being made with small businesses is that they don’t consistently test their social media messages.

I will admit it, I’ve been guilty of making this mistake at times. It’s difficult to test everything. One thing that’s helped me a ton is to keep a log. You can keep track of all of the different types of posts (i.e. article, video, image, etc.) that you’ve created over time.

If you start to see trends in which type of posts seems to perform the best, that could be a sign that it’s time to experiment a bit. After all, you have a good amount of data to work with. The third mistake that many small businesses make is to test other people’s tweets, Facebook posts, and blog posts.

At my company, we’ve gotten into trouble before for running social media tests that were shared by other people. My encouragement to people to share our posts backfired, and it cost us a lot of traffic.

2. The second mistake is an incomplete social strategy

Make Your Brand Irresistibly Copy-PRich

On the surface, it may make sense to help your friend break into the “promotional space.” If a small business has an accepted brand/company policy, this may be the type of request you want to consider.

However, let’s take a closer look. If you’re asking for an unpaid favor, it’s more likely that this is a sign of dishonesty and ulterior motives, even if there are “small” intentions behind the request.

How often do you find organizations which have solicited advice from a friend or colleague and in return are looking for a favor? If the response is “yes” to the request, I’d emphasize the honesty and integrity of the gesture. If the response is “no,” I’d reiterate the honest intentions but let the request go. Once you move past reputation management, thinking in these terms means less of your time is wasted.

Your Response When Companies Don’t Need Your Help

I generally recommend against going above and beyond for free services such as links.

When I get requests from companies for “free” links, I don’t spend more than the cost of hosting and a little bit of my own time. To this day, Penguin and Panda still follow over-optimized tactics, so it’s of vital importance for any business to guard against these penalties.

It’s a race to the bottom, but on-sites-we-mustn’t-spend-resources-on anymore. PRO members may prefer to focus exclusively on link building and manual Google updates will certainly continue (as most of us fear Penguin and Panda anyway).

Offering an “insignificant” opportunity or discount isn’t something worth striking a deal with. The best types of services are the ones you can provide that will curb spam, increase traffic, increase the brand’s presence, or afford future growth.

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