Category Archives: mistakes

7 Social Media Pitfalls to Avoid in 2017


Social Media Marketing can be a disaster just waiting to happen.

If you’re not careful, Social Media can be a forum for very public brand failures. Even veteran marketers have been known to stumble.

So what can you do? Take a note of these 7 social media pitfalls to avoid.

Firstly, as suggested by Bower Web Solutions:

1. Using a hashtag without understanding what it really means

After the Twitter hashtag, #WhyIStayed, began trending in order to promote awareness and speak out against domestic violence, Digiorno Pizza tweeted this…


ALWAYS do your due diligence on the significance and purpose of hashtags before trying to use them in your post. This is one of the more offensive social media pitfalls- pay attention!

2. Poorly relating or being insensitive to holidays and special events

Often companies create cheesy posts for holidays that are ineffective. However, sometimes they can be extremely offensive if they do not respect the meaning of the holiday. In the example below, where an advertiser sought to leverage Martin Luther King day for commercial purposes, the post was outright ignorant and a Facebook user shamed this as another one of the worst social media pitfalls.


3. Using images without fully knowing their source and meaning

To celebrate July 4th, American Apparel posted a picture their social media administrator believed to be a cloud or some type of firework, but in reality was a picture of the Challenger exploding.


4. Faiing to respond to and resolve customer feedback

Smuckers has donated and supported the production of GMO crops, which they use in some of their products, and received questions from their followers on their Facebook page about it. Instead of responding to the post and explaining their position and belief on the situation, they resorted to deleting the negative posts and in turn created an uproar on social media. One of the easiest social media pitfalls to fix is to simply be nice in your comment section.


5. Only talking about yourself and your products

The purpose of your business for utilizing a social media platform should be deeper than simply adding another medium for generating business sales. It should be a way for you to create truly loyal fans and followers, by giving them an insider’s look into your company. Below is an all too common example of businesses’ social media accounts that lack a deeper purpose and are therefore ineffective.


10 likes from 1,459,815 page followers

Circles Studio adds:

6. Having an intern or assistant do it all

While it’s fine for interns to help execute your social media, it’s vital that there is someone from management that is driving the strategy, planning and content. If not, then your social media marketing can quickly become unaligned with your brand. Just like you wouldn’t send an intern alone to a tradeshow or press conference, you shouldn’t have them posting content online without strategic guidance and oversight.


7. Not engaging with followers

Social media should not be a one-way street. To be successful and build a following that matters, you have to be social! Share others’ posts on Facebook. Ask questions. Answer questions. Retweet. Share articles. Thank people for retweeting your posts. Repin. Like others’ posts. These are all ways to be involved in social media. The more engagement, the better; so don’t forget the social in social media!


Such are the common pitfalls of Social Media Marketing.

If you want to know what you should do in social media marketing, take a look at our online training courses, which will help you to succeed in Social Media.

For those new to Social Media Marketing:


The Principles & Practice of Social Media Marketing is a seven-part online training course providing a comprehensive introduction to Social Media Marketing, from the Basics to detailed instructions on how to build and run a Social Media Marketing programme.

For more details of the Social Media Marketing online course, please click here.

For those who want to dig into Social Media Marketing in more detail:


The Advanced Social Media Marketing online training course is designed to drill down into the specific details of the major Social Media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, Google Plus and others.

For more details of the Advanced Social Media Marketing programme, please click here.

For those who want to upskill themselves on Social Media Marketing for 2017:

Social Media Marketing Essentials

Social media is an ever-changing environment and unless you’re involved on a day to day basis you’re unlikely to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in the medium. So we’ve devised this Social Media Marketing Essentials online training course to capture the latest developments across the expanding world of social media for 2017.

For more details of the Social Media Essentials course, please click here.

We also offer detailed courses about Facebook and LinkedIn – see the listings under “eCourses” in our top menu.

Are You Making These Facebook Marketing Mistakes?


Just how well are YOU really doing on Facebook? Are you making classic mistakes like these:

1. Too much self-promotion

Do your Facebook posts only talk about You, You, You?

As Jeff Bullas notes:

It is okay to share your achievements with your loyal followers but you should never overdo it. If you are not offering value to your visitors or are not providing them with the information they are looking for, you’re missing out a lot. People spend time on Facebook to get entertained, inspired and interact with like-minded people. So in order to promote your brand, you should find innovative ways that inspire visitors and give them a reason to connect.

If you become too promotional, you will soon see the ‘Likes’ turning into ‘Dislikes’.

Here’s a typical example, from Acer Australia & New Zealand:


The local page has more than 50,000 total likes, but this post (a typical recent example) could only attract one thumbs-up.

We’re not picking on Acer — it’s just a typical big brand example, seeing Facebook as yet another broadcast mechanism rather than a chance to interact with customers.


2.  Being Boring or Predictable

As Leyl Master Black observes:

When they’re thinking about marketing, some business owners forget that Facebook is a social place where people share things they find funny, interesting or useful with their friends. Think about what kind of content your fans would actually want to share when planning your posts.

Peter Shankman, social media consultant, entrepreneur and author of “Customer Service: New Rules for a Social Media World”, also cautions against becoming too predictable. “Status updates by themselves get boring. But then again, so do photos, videos and multimedia as a whole. Your job is to mix it up. The moment you become predictable, boring or annoying, they’ll hide you from their feed. So keep it varied and personal—a video here, a photo here, a tag of one of your fans here.”

Creating too much “filler” content by auto-publishing content from your blog or Twitter feed can also derail your efforts. Joseph Manna, community manager at Infusionsoft, recommends using Facebook’s native publishing tools to gain the most benefit from Facebook.

“Whatever you do, don’t automate everything,” says Manna. “It’s nice to ‘set and forget,’ but the risk is two-fold: publishing systems sometimes have issues, and Facebook places low-priority on auto-published content.”

Here are a couple of GOOD examples of a local driving school changing things up and providing interesting content while still staying relevant to their product category:




Some more common mistakes, as identified by


A study by BuddyMedia found that status updates of less than 80 characters received a 27 percent higher reaction than longer updates. This makes sense when you think about how you use Facebook and how fast the News Feed flies by.

Too Long:


Posting lengthy paragraphs as a status update is like giving your Facebook fans homework. On the other hand, short updates such as questions and short polls get a higher reaction simply because the barrier to participation is very low.

Much better:


4. Ignoring Comments

Facebook fans are people, like you. If they make the effort to leave a comment or reply within a thread on your Facebook Page, they want to know that you’re listening. Pages that consistently ignore posts by fans aren’t as successful as Pages that participate in comment threads. Fans are less likely to return if they don’t feel heard.
The other reason why you want to reply to posts from fans is that Facebook sends that fan a notification, bringing him back to your Page!

Here’s an unfortunate  Twitter example (dating back to 2013 and hopefully resolved these days) of customer service only during working hours:


Need help to avoid these Facebook mistakes? Check out our Facebook online training courses:

Facebook Accelerator Programme

So you have a few hundred (or a few thousand) followers on Facebook but now you want to know how to get to the next level? Our Facebook Accelerator seven-part online course will lead you through the steps necessary to supercharge your Facebook presence and get Kiwi consumers engaging with you and your brands.

For more details of the Facebook Accelerator programme, please click here.

The Complete Facebook Marketing Course

For those who wish to master Facebook Marketing in its entirety, we’ve created a ten-week online training programme which will take you from absolute beginner on Facebook to highly effective Facebook communicator.

For more details of the Complete Facebook Marketing programme, please click here.

Five Mistakes That Most Kiwi Marketers Make

On this new NetmarketingTV video we talk about the five mistakes that most Kiwi marketers make, including:

  • Mistake # 1. Not spending enough on digital marketing
  • Mistake # 2. Not spending nearly enough on social media marketing
  • Mistake # 3. Spending their TV ad dollars on TV
  • Mistake # 4. Not thinking Mobile-first.
  • Mistake # 5. Not keeping up with the latest digital developments(Watch the video for the details).

We’re developing a number of new initiatives to help with these problems, and the first of those is now available. It’s our 2016 Social Media Refresher course, designed to capture the latest developments across the expanding world of social media. We cover what’s new, what’s different and what’s important in the major social media networks.

You can check out the Social Media Refresher course here, at