Overcoming Social Media Challenges in 2019
January 25, 2019
It’s barely been 2019 for a month, and already, companies have been experiencing some challenges navigating social media. With the constant changes to algorithms on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the like, it’s no wonder so many marketers are scratching their heads at finding the best way to take on the latest outflow of rules and regulations to hit the internet.
There’s no rule book for social media marketing, but there are some trends to follow, pitfalls to avoid and foundations to build before taking on the vast universe online. Whether you’re new to social media or your business is an old pro looking for new insight, these tips should help you maneuver the new online landscape of 2019.
1. Be Honest and Genuine: Facebook, among other social media entities, took a hit in past years where privacy and trust is concerned. This caused many internet users to avoid this and other social media platforms, even causing some celebrities to delete their accounts. While these changes have caused a bit of a ripple in the social media marketing game, they’re nothing that can’t be smoothed over with a little transparency.
Whether they’re watching one of your YouTube videos or sharing a Facebook post, your customers need to know that they can trust you and the content you deliver. To help your audience better understand your company’s intentions and your brands initiative at transparency, be sure to lay it all out up front. On your official website, and perhaps also in a social media disclaimer, let your clients know what information gets collected, what you use such information for, and how it is managed and/or disposed of.
For example, if you have a contest and request emails or home mailing addresses to send out a prize, your customers need to know that this isn’t the next Cambridge Analytica scandal. Cambridge Analytica was a marketing company collecting information from millions of Facebook users during the Trump election. This data mining caused a bit of a stir in terms of privacy concerns and political scheming, landing Facebook in hot water.
Just because your company uses Facebook’s services doesn’t mean you want to be associated with Facebook and their politics in any way. So be sure to let your customers know what you’re all about and what they’re getting into up front. This will make your social media followers feel more at ease whether they’re liking a photo or watching a live stream on Facebook.
2. Make All Data Collection Optional: If you choose to collect data and information from your clients, the best way to stay on top of scandals and privacy laws is by not only disclosing what you’re doing but by giving users the option. Don’t suck up stats and figures as soon as someone comments, likes, or emails your company. Instead, have a questionnaire at the ready to collect details about your clients.
A great way to gain access to valuable data which could help your company in the future is to include a “members only” section in your website. Individuals and companies who sign up with your service or business can leave only the information they want to share. This takes the onus off of you, and gives you access to helpful data for future updates and projects.
3. Avoid Over Spending: Don’t overspend on ads that may or may not draw a crowd. This is a pitfall many new social media marketers fall into. Yes, some paid advertising helps and is relevant to your cause, but in many cases it’s just more money and time than it’s worth. The alternative? Try using interactive content to get your viewers and users engaged, create web traffic to your official site, and increase revenue over time. This tactic works as a long-term goal rather than a quick and easy ploy for fast results. You won’t see success overnight, but the success you see should be long-lasting, rather than fleeting.
Buying all your views and shares might get you in the running for top Facebook page of the year fast, but it won’t hold potential customers to your brand. In fact, seeing continuous ads on their newsfeed could deter them, make them weary of your business and possibly suspect some form of privacy invasion.
4. Steer Clear of Ad Lingo and Click Bait: Social media is cracking down on trolls and click bait this year with the intention of cleaning up the internet and making each site a “better place to play.” Unfortunately, this means that even the well-meaning posts which are providing a genuine service or product could be construed as something negative if seen in the wrong light.
Click bait is a heading, keyword, or hashtag which draws attention in a grand gesture of advertising. Capitalization of letters, wild claims or flashy words, and plenty of exclamation points are usually part of this type of ad. It makes the user want to click the link, but often there’s nothing of relevance on the other side. False claims, such as, “click here to see how Sarah Jessica Parker looks now” which lead to an ad for diet pills are a prime example of such marketing.
Anything that can be seen as a scheme should be avoided in 2019, even if your grand gesture is honest and the link on the other side really does show what SJP looks like now. It’s best to use relatable writing with a touch softer penmanship.