What’s worse than being uninformed? Being misinformed. In the complex world of social media marketing, a staggering number of pitfalls occur when strategists think they know something, but don’t. A strategist who’s in the position of “not-knowing” knows that he doesn’t know; this can be fixed. But a strategist who believes he knows the truth can cause some serious damage to his organization through lost time, money, and public perception. But enough with our epistemological ruminations! These are the foursocial media marketing myths you simply can’t afford to fall for.
#1 “Facebook is free advertising.”
Oh, if only! This is perhaps one of the most commonly perpetrated social media marketing myths, in part because seven years ago, it was true. In those days, Facebook marketing was young, vibrant, and exciting. Newly released “Facebook Pages” made it possible for brands to reach the masses – without tossing a dime toward Silicon Valley. But, as I said, those days are over. Organic reach is declining. If you want to really reach your demographics, you’re going to have to (a) create an off-the-charts incredibly brilliant piece of content, (b) spend a lot of money with Facebook, or (c) both.
#2 “No one uses Google+.”
This is simply not true. Maybe no one you spend your Friday nights with. But, the facts are, Google+ has 1.6 billion users, including 540 million monthly active users (source). Also, 22% of online adults visit Google+ at least once a month. While this platform may not be as exciting as Facebook was eight years ago or Instagram was two years ago, it’s time could very well come. If nothing else, get yourself set up on the platform for the authorship benefit. (Additional up-to-date Google+ statistics.)
#3 “Instagram doesn’t work for B2B companies.”
False. For proof, see this post (20 B2B Companies to Follow on Instagram). Intel, General Electric, MailChimp, and Maersk Line are four of my favorites. I can’t recommend checking out their accounts enough. You will see this social media marketing myth debunked before your very eyes! It’s kind of a cheesy cliché at this point, but it’s true: “Every brand has a story.” Instagram is a highly engaging place to share that story.
#4 “Customers will just find me on social media.”
Yes, some will. There are a few people who, when they want to know more about your brand, or when they really love your brand, will go out of their way to find your Facebook page or Twitter. These customers – despite what your marketing agency might be telling you – are not the norm. The idea that you’ll simply be “found” – and that this is enough exposure – is a terrible social media marketing myth. You have to drive traffic to your platforms, and – if you’re smart – you’ll want to drive traffic out of those platforms onto your website, into your retail store, etc. Social media is “fun,” but its purposes are much greater. Never forget that one of those purposes is to move traffic.
What social media marketing myths drive you crazy?
Are there any myths about social media strategy that really grate on your nerves? Any lessons learned the hard way? I’d love to hear about your experiences in the comments…
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