As a new start-up, you may have a lot of places try and give you advice on social media. Some of it is good, but some of it uses outdated practices. How do you distinguish between these social media myths?
In a study by eMarketer found that 88 percent of US companies are using social media for marketing purposes in the United States. Social media is transforming from a fad into the business way of life. Therefore, as a start-up, it is important that you jump on the bandwagon as soon as possible. However, jumping on the bandwagon also comes with many stigmas, stereotypes, and paradigms that aren’t healthy for productive business. So, before you dive headfirst into the world of social media marketing, be sure you learn the truth about the advice that you're given.
In this article, you will learn about five social media myths that you'll want to avoid when developing your businesses presence on social media. Let's take a look.
Social Media Myth #1: Social media is free
Many people regard social media as a free tool to market their products when their overall budgets are low. However, unfortunately, social media marketing doesn’t come free for many companies. According to an analysis conducted by the Content Factory, companies spend an average of $200-$350 on social media marketing every day and about $4,000 - $7,000 per month. A lot of this money goes towards graphics and photos that are used throughout social media channels, ads on Facebook or Instagram, education of employees, and the cost of social media managers. The trick for your budget is to spend money on what you can’t do well and on that which will help you make more money to spend. Therefore, you should prioritize ads and other items that will directly generate more spendable cash.
Social Media Myth #2: You need to be present on every social media platform
When embarking on the road to a successful start-up, many businesses quickly jump on every social media site possible. The idea is to be as visible as possible to reach as many people as you can. However, the truth is: not all social media isn’t created equally. Different outlets target different types of audiences and therefore you need to focus on the platforms that are relevant to your target audience and your industry. Figure out your key demographics and do your research to determine their social media usage. For example, Instagram tends to have a younger audience than Facebook and Twitter. You may also need to focus on other social media site such as YouTube, Reddit, or music streaming venues depending on what you’re trying to market.
Social Media Myth #3: You should post as many times as possible
People, in general, think that they need to constantly post on their social media sites in order to stay relevant and connect with their audiences. However, recent research shows that the more information that people post on social media, the less likely their audience will trust them. This means that the average social media user trusts businesses that post less but provide more engaging and informational content. So, if you want to build a relationship with your customers, you should follow this concept. Also, the time of day that you post is important to determine how your content is reaching your customers. The optimal times vary from platform to platform but generally, during the lunch hours of the work week are the best times to post marketing content.
Social Media Myth #4: You Should Automate Your Social Media Updates
One of the other social media myths that you'll want to avoid as a new start-up is to automate your social media posts.
We understand that you have a lot to work on - build your business plan, launch your new website, work on PR and so on.
Remember though, you only get one chance to make a first impression.
So while it's ok to schedule your social media updates when you're not available, don't try and automate all of your channels. You cannot set it and forget it.
Rather, spend the time developing a sound social media strategy - what do you want each channel to look like to users? From there, start developing the content to attract viewers to your channels.
If you automate everything, you'll look like a robot and leave a bad first impression with people.
Social Media Myth #5: Social Media Is Easy To Do And Delivers Instant Results
For some reason, new start-ups think that social media is a silver bullet and will start generating results right from the start.
Chances are, your first few campaigns will fall flat. Most do. It's also not something you can go from 0 to 100 on in seconds.
Social media takes time. Some people hit a home run their first time, but those are few and far between.
It's something you have to work at. That means building relationships with your customers at every touchpoint, having fantastic customer service, publishing great content. Once you do this and begin to engage with your customers, social media should start to work for you.
If you try to go from step 1 to 10 without putting in the work, you're likely to fall flat or feel like you're struggling and say that social media doesn't work. It does - when you put time into building a solid base.
Over To You
There you have it, five social media myths to help your start-up when developing your presence on social media.
Before you launch your social media campaign, do your research. You need to figure out what’s truly beneficial for your business and what is simply a myth of the industry. Also be sure you do your research, as there are a lot of "coaches" who still use a number of these social media myths when working with clients.
If you have additional questions about any of these myths, please leave them in the comments and we'll help debunk them.