Three big myths about social media marketing

Three big myths about social media marketing

1. It’s free

We hear it and encounter it every day. Clients want to start or expand their social media marketing efforts - because it’s free! They’ve either read a blog or talked to a friend or colleague that’s deluded them into believing social media marketing is free. And that by posting to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, or Instagram for no cost they’ll reap millions in rewards.

If time equals money then social media “ain’t” free. To properly curate, create, and engage via social media takes a significant investment in time. To curate and create social content may only take an hour or so a day - but that’s still 7-14 hours per week - which ends up being a lot of time. And you’re not even spending big to create viral content yet. So don’t think that social media marketing is free - even if it’s just you spending a few hours per week to do it - that’s still an investment.

Not to mention, skipping between social media channels to post regularly quickly becomes tedious - so you’ll be looking for a tool to streamline things. Yes, freemium tools abound, but they usually hit the limits of free rather quickly and soon you’ll be shelling out money to improve them.

2. It’s easy

All you need to do is post to a few social media channels every day and success will be yours, right? Just keep posting and the likes and the followers will simply accrue. And of course these followers… err lemmings… will start to buy whatever you’re selling. Yeah, yeah, that’s the ticket.

First, curating content is time consuming and hard. Sure you can configure some “bots” to tweet out junk - but that’s not going to engage folks. You need to make sure the content you’re sharing aligns with your client and prospect’s interests - and that what you’re sharing is, well, actually interesting. This means constantly reading or skimming relatable content and parsing it down to the most tantalizing items to share.

Second, creating content takes time and effort. If you’re planning on writing a blog or blogs you’ll quickly find coming up with topics and delivering compelling content is challenging. And even if you find it easy to conceive and create content - are you a good writer? Is what you’re writing compelling to your constituents? And will what you write rise to the top of search engines so it can be found?

Then there’s other types of social media content, such as infographics, viral videos, podcasts, etc. Do you have the time or expertise to do any or all of these as well? And of course you’ll need to find time to promote your content or to reach out to other influential bloggers to guest blog or to cross promote with. It’s far from easy.

3. It’s guaranteed

Post regularly, Tweet things, and upload some photos and you’ll instantly gain a following of thousands. And these folks will undoubtedly translate into paying customers! Booyah! you’ll be sunbathing on your yacht in no time.

Becoming an overnight social media star is almost as likely as becoming a top draft pick in professional sports. It’ll take a lot of time and effort – and probably money – to create the type of content that will get noticed and bring social media fame.

More than likely, you’ll discover, after you’ve exhausted reaching out to your friends and colleagues, you’ll have only several dozen Facebook Likes and Twitter Followers. Maybe you’ll get lucky and garner a few hundred quickly. But at some point the long slog will set in and you’ll find your torrent dwindles to a trickle of new followers. Unless of course, you’re spending time and money to catapult you to success. But then that debunks all the myths at once, doesn’t it?

Oh, and don’t assume that a Like or Follower translates into a customer. It generally doesn’t mean much unless you’re actively engaging with them. It’s similar to opening a brick and mortar store - just because someone walks in doesn’t mean they’re going to buy something. They might just be browsing. So now you’ll have to work at convincing your social media friend to become a customer. But don’t worry…. that’ll be free, easy, and guaranteed!

Apr 29, 2014

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James SharpSpring
May 13, 2014

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