It’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for. We’re finally debunking all those social media marketing myths that have unfortunately become ingrained in so many brands today. The landscape is complex and has evolved dramatically since social media first kicked off in the early 2000s. So, it makes sense that a lot of outdated ideas have held strong. But believe us when we tell you that just because something worked on social 5 years ago doesn’t mean it holds the same power today. But enough with our long introduction—Let’s dive in so you can get a sense of today’s social media marketing DOs and DON'Ts.
Myth #1: Social media marketing is ineffective.
Were this true, we wouldn’t have a business! Social media marketing is an incredibly effective and strategic tool for any brand. Don’t believe us? Here are some stats from HubSpot:
34% of consumers use social media to learn about brands.
83% of people use Instagram to discover new products/services and 87% took a specific action (like making a purchase) as a result.
64% of buyers would rather send a brand a message on social media than call customer service.
79% of people say that UGC (user-generated content) significantly impacts their purchasing decisions.
Combined with strategy, social media can be the most lucrative form of marketing for any brand.
Myth #2: Social media is just another sales tool.
No way! In fact, being too salesy on social media is a recipe for an ‘unfollow.’ The magic of social media is the ability to do SO MANY THINGS:
Present product or service information.
Introduce your team and show the ‘face’ behind your brand.
Advertise upcoming events, launches, and sales.
Delve into the history of your brand and its mission.
Encourage your audience to interact with your content (thereby helping you learn more about your target demographic).
Share UGC (user-generated content).
Address customer service issues.
Partner with aligned brands, influencers, and community groups.
Our best advice? Go for 60% non-promotional content (i.e. most of the above list) and 40% posts with CTAs (calls-to-action) to buy from your brand.
Myth #3: Follower count is all that matters.
Have you ever noticed a bluec-checkmarked account that has hundreds of thousands of followers but their individual posts only get a few hundred likes? That’s not making a real impact. Instead, focus on your engagement metrics (likes, comments, shares, leads, DMs, etc.) to better understand how your platform is really performing. If numbers aren’t translating to revenue or brand awareness, it’s time to rethink your social strategy.
Myth #4: My customers don’t use social media.
As of this year, there are roughly 8 billion people on the planet and nearly 5 billion of them are active on at least one social media platform. And don’t think social media is just for young'uns. While those 19-29 are the most active on social media (84% have an account), they’re followed closely by users aged 30-49 (81%), 50-64 (73%), and 65+ (45%). If you don’t know where to start, revisit our blog about the different major social media platforms and key audiences. You don’t need to be on every platform to make an impact. But in our humble opinion, you need to be marketing on social media.
Myth #5: I can post the same content on all platforms.
Each social media platform was designed with specific purposes, techniques, tools, and capabilities in mind. While you can ‘repurpose’ your content on many different platforms, you’ll have to take the time to adjust the art and copy to best fit the specs (i.e. short, snappy copy for Twitter, a vertical edited video for TikTok, a long-form video for YouTube, swipe-up features in an Instagram story, and engaging opening lines and artwork for a Facebook post). Need help navigating all these unique platforms? Give us a call and learn how we can help you strategize your social media marketing plan or even take the overwhelming task off your hands.
Myth #6: I can share content I find on social media.
Photos and text posted on social media are rarely in the public domain. If you want to repost something (such as a customer’s photo with your product), always ask for permission and be sure to tag the original creator in your post. If you’re tagged in a follower’s story, however, it’s usually okay to reshare to your own account’s IG story. Formal posts (ones that don’t expire in 24 hours) should require proper permission.
Myth #7: Hashtags are critical.
Hate to break it to you, but hashtags aren’t going to skyrocket your engagement overnight. Now that social media is a huge and complex world of its own, hashtags are more of a tool to connect common conversation topics. They’re user-friendly and certainly can lead to greater discovery, but they’re no secret sauce for instant virality.
Myth #8: Just ignore negative feedback.
Absolutely do not ignore critical comments. And, don’t delete them either. Just because you try to hide the negative chatter doesn’t mean it won’t happen elsewhere. The best thing you can do is address comments and questions with respect and authenticity. For more, head back to our blog all about this topic.
Myth #9: Social media isn’t measurable.
Like we mentioned above, creating a social media account isn’t some magic pill—you have to be strategic about it by sharing information, linking URLs, incorporating CTAs (calls-to-action), and actually engaging with your audience. All of these metrics can be tracked and help you answer the question, “What is making us money?”
Myth #10: Only schedule content during the workweek.
While it’s true that social media engagement tends to be highest during the middle of the week, depending on your target audience (age, location, behaviors), the weekend might actually be a uniquely prime time to post. Take a look at HubSpot’s 2023 data on “Best Times to Post” and use your own research and exploration to find what schedule works best for your followers.
What myths did we miss? And what lingering social media marketing questions are on your mind? Connect with us via DM or book your own discovery call to learn more about working directly with Media À La Carte.