Are You Guilty of These Social Media Marketing Mistakes?

Okay, this is an awkward one. I love to keep the vibe super positive on here, but there’s an epidemic happening on social media right now. Good people who think they’re doing the right thing are polarizing their audience and giving a bad name to fellow digital marketers. And the worst part? Most of them have no idea they’re doing anything wrong. This is my PSA; and I’m only going to say it once. Here's my list of the most common social media marketing faux pas.

Are You Guilty of These Social Media Marketing Mistakes? - Instagram Marketing Tips for 2018 - Social Media Marketing -

Have you noticed how people cringe when they hear the phrase “social media marketing”?

It’s because there are a lot of people doing it wrong – and with more people on social platforms than ever before, we simply are losing our patience. 

We’re Marie Condo-ing our newsfeeds. What doesn’t serve us anymore, GOES. It’s not a bad thing, btw. We only want those most likely to love and get the most value from our offering to see it, so unfollows are doing strategic targeting work for us.

But, I’d hate for you to lose the RIGHT followers simply because of a small misstep. It’s like double dipping at a party – an honest mistake, but one that can leave a lasting impression.

Here are my top “TO DON’TS” for social media marketing on Facebook and Instagram:

1. Mass tagging in Facebook group posts by FB group admins.

Eek, have you seen this one? A facebook group admin makes a post in the group and then tags every single group member in the caption. OUCH. This gives every group member not one, but two notifications.

Just say no to this behavior. If someone in your group wants to see your post, they'll head there in their own time. Let them find the content organically and they'll be much more apt to enjoy it.

Popping up in their notifications in this way feels spammy – this blows all trust and will get you unfollowed.

I'm not talking about tagging friends in funny memes captions, etc. Go for it with those! I'm simply calling out FB group admins who are using this practice to try to get more group interaction.

What to do instead: Increase group engagement on posts with CTAs, by fostering conversation, and by being present.

2. Along the same lines, mass tagging in Instagram photos.

Do not tag people in your photo to garner engagement from them – only tag people in your photo who are actually represented in your photo.

Of course, go ahead and tag the photographer, the goods company of whatever products are in the shot, etc. But don't blow up 30-40 of your followers notifications with a tag simply because you want to see an increase in engagement (*unless they asked you to, then go man go!).

Only tag people who are represented in the actual photo.

What to do instead: If you really want to get someone's eyes on a post, tag them in the comments (just them, not a big group) and include a personal note to keep it from feeling like spam.

3. Begging for reviews.

Yes, reviews are fabulous and, yes, we all want incredible raving reviews from our customers. But, if we beg for reviews, it's going to look a little needy and feel like a big ask.

If you are going to single someone out for a review, save it for after the second or third interaction unless you've already discussed it ahead of time.

When you do make that ask, be mindful of the positioning. Something like, "Hey I loved getting to know you during your appointment. I'm always looking for feedback on how I can serve my clients better. If you've got any feedback you'd like to share, I'd greatly appreciate it. If not, no biggie! Thanks."

See the difference? One feels like the vendor is ambitious and client-focused, while the other route can seem like begging for five stars.

Do this instead: If you're looking for new clients in a target demo, offer them a discount in exchange for their feedback. That way, they go into the exchange knowing it's part of the deal – bye awkwardness!

4. Hating on other pages.

Overall, try to keep it posi. Don't ever hate on other pages publicly. Remember...

"What Susie says of Sally says more of Susie than it says of Sally."

What you say about others says more about you than it does about the other person. Keep it kind, keep it positive.

Do this instead: Focus on the good you are doing rather than the "bad" someone else might be doing.

Those are my top four social media marketing faux pas.

In the comments tell me – do these bug you too? Or is it just me? Let’s start a convo.


Chris Emmer

Grand Rapids, MI

Graphic Designer / Branding and Social Media Strategist / Yoga + Meditation Guide / Your New BFF.

West Michigan based, small business + wellness obsessed.