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11 Social Media Mistakes Business Owners Make

Question: What is the #1 mistake you see business owners make on social media, and what can they do to fix it?

Failing to Plan

JohnBerkowitzvatar“Too many business owners jump into social media without a plan or the resources to maintain an active and productive conversation within their community of customers, prospects and employees. Social media is not a “set it and forget it” medium. It’s better to not participate than to participate poorly or passively.”






Getting Bogged Down in Vanity

Benjaminavatar-100x100-1“Stop talking about yourself, and give the platform to your customers. The lubricant company WD-40 created a fan club, turning the lens (and mic) on their customers and allowing them to showcase the thousands of applications for their product. As an instructional database, it’s excellent value added for their customers, and it comes at no production cost to the company.”


–BENJAMIN LEIS, Sweat EquiTees



Checking the Box

AlexandraLevitavatar-1“Too many business owners simply set up a social media profile to “check the box,” and then ignore it from that point on. Having an inactive social media presence is actually worse than having none at all. If you want customers to take you seriously, interact on a regular basis and keep your channels hopping with activity. “


–ALEXANDRA LEVIT, Inspiration at Work

Employing Inconsistent Personal Branding

Brett Farmiloe“People research business owners online before they decide to do business with them. The mistake business owners make is not having a consistent brand across their social media channels. If business owners filled out their Linkedin profiles completely and developed a consistent bio for Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, they’d improve their personal and company brands.”


–BRETT FARMILOE, Internet Marketing Company



Not Understanding Their Audience

imgres“Too many brands and business owners don’t understand who they are talking to, even though social media gives them the best clues on how to respond to others. From profiles to what the person shares on social media, a business owner can determine the best language and words to use as a response to a customer. Don’t be lazy and use a one-size-fits-all answer.”


–ERIC HOLTZCLAW, Laddering Works



Forgetting to Be Social

kyle-clayton-300x300“People use social media for one thing: being social! Too many brands autotweet sales and marketing material, and it isn’t timely or social. Jump in the stream, talk to people, and provide content. Being social and interesting, while providing useful content based on your business, will get you results. I boosted my sales 49 percent in one year with effective social media.”


–KYLE CLAYTON, Jackrabbit Janitorial



Committing Random Acts of Social Media

Leahavatar-100x100“Random acts of social media happen when someone says, “We need to do social media!” and then puts in time and effort for a week before fizzling out. Take the time to plan a basic strategy that enables you to have a consistent social media presence for the long term.”



–LEAH NEADERTHAL, Start Somewhere




Adam DeGraide“It’s fine to post something funny, interesting or unrelated to your product or service every once in a while, but keep it to a minimum. Doing this will lower your credibility and probably cost you a few fans/followers. “



Forgetting to Be Human

Felix-Lluberes1“Don’t try too hard to sell a product. Be human. Social media should be social. If anything, sell yourself.”




–FELIX LLUBERES, Position Logic



Faking Getting Hacked

images“Don’t be the social media manager who cries wolf and pretends to have your Twitter accounts hijacked, like @MTV did after @BurgerKing and @Jeep’s accounts were hacked. Instead, build your audience by engaging your followers by asking for their opinions on subjects, and make sure to change your password every few weeks! “





Selling Instead of Interacting

Heatherhuhmanavatar-100x100“Too many business owners focus on selling their products or services via social media, rather than engaging their audiences. Focusing on building beneficial relationships will bring more sales than just sending out direct links and pitches. “



–HEATHER HUHMAN, Come Recommended


Photo Credit

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Author : Young Entrepreneur Council

The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

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