When starting to run social media campaigns for the first time, it can be a bit overwhelming, and you can feel like throwing everything but the kitchen sink at it. This can also start to become your approach after running social media campaigns for quite a while and finally deciding to take the plunge into investing more time, effort and most importantly, money. The secret to running successful organic or paid social media campaigns is not to jump in head first, but to take a step back and plan. Here’s my tips on what not to do when focusing on social media marketing.

DO NOT create a channel on every social media platform

I talk about this quite a lot, but that is because it is so important. One of the biggest mistakes that you can make is to try and win your audience over on every single platform. If your audience are millennial females interested in interior design, you can be wasting a lot of time, resources and more, by trying to achieve furniture sales through Twitter. Especially when starting out, it pays to focus on one or two platforms, wherever your audience primarily spends their time, and really, really optimise these, prior to expanding. Twitter could work well, don’t get me wrong, but if you don’t have Instagram or Pinterest pinned down before expecting Twitter growth, you’re probably not going to see results.

DO NOT start social media without quality imagery

If you do not have high quality content, it is likely that your engagement levels will be very low. Platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest are very visual platforms, so to compete against competitors or to get the attention of your audience, you need to ensure that your imagery reaches the high standards that are set. You don’t necessarily need to reach Aldi levels, but make sure that you are creative and your content is engaging. Without this, you won’t see a high return.

DO NOT launch anything without tracking

This point can be too easily overlooked. If you have amazing content, incredible copy and you get your audience to a T, if you don’t have tracking set up correctly you won’t actually be able to see the benefit of your social media efforts. You could have 10,000 likes, 100,000 followers and a huge amount of brand awareness, but how does this equate to actual return? How many sales have you made off the back of that? What is your average order value from social media? What is your return on investment or return on ad spend? At the very minimum, link up your ads manager correctly to your website and set up analytics goal tracking. It will really help you amend your strategy and get the best out of your campaigns.

DO NOT expect results overnight

Social media is a long game. It is very rare that you go viral overnight, especially as a new brand. A lot of campaigns are slow processes that slowly build up audiences and engagement. Particularly paid campaigns, that need time to build up brand awareness and traffic before focusing on conversions. Going into running social media campaigns, you need to be aware that it will take time to build up and will achieve more results as time goes on. (I promise that this isn’t just Social Media Manager waffle, it is the truth.)

DO NOT underestimate the skill needed

There is a reason that social media agencies and professionals are so in demand right now. It is a full time job. You may think that because you get a lot of likes on your personal social media accounts that you know how to run campaigns for a company page. You are probably wrong. There are courses that you can take on social media for businesses, there are certifications, exams, even degrees. It is not something that you can “just do”. If you are going to run your own business social media, delve into the world of strategy, creative and analysis. Perhaps use the Facebook Blueprint courses to find out a bit more. Understand the marketing funnel, the customer journey, how that links with other marketing tools such as PPC or content marketing, and you will achieve much better results.

If you want to learn more about social media marketing, get in touch and we’ll see how we can help.