Brands are having a rough time on social media these days. Consumers are becoming more and more savvy when it comes to online marketing and are stiff-arming any advertising attempts toward them. And even worse than that, they’re becoming actively annoyed at how brands are conducting their business on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Because consumers have become desensitized to messages by the brand themselves, businesses have begun turning to second parties like influencers and celebrities to do their marketing for them.
Between brands’ overly promotional strategies, their lackluster attempts at wit or humor, and their inability to keep up with responding to comments or questions, consumers are becoming brand-averse on social platforms- even if it’s a brand they typically love.
These cringe-worthy pitfalls brands seem to be tripping into over and over are seriously hurting their bottom lines. With over 75% of people saying they purchased something because they saw it first on social media, it really pays to have people following and liking your feed. The following are brands’ most annoying habits on social media.
Posting too often
The question of posting frequency is a tough one. Post too often and you’re annoying. Post too seldom and you’re not worth following. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. According to a Sprout Social survey conducted in July of 2017 though, social media users chose posting too often as the number one most annoying thing brands do online.
Whether it’s a brand posting a ton of ads or your best friend posting a million identical selfies, it looks and feels like spam. And spam is worth an unfollow. To stay on the safe side, a good rule of thumb is a maximum of 2 posts a day for Facebook, 1-2 a day for Instagram, and 10-15 a day for Twitter. Good ways around this is to utilize other posting streams like Stories and Lives on Instagram, for example. Basically, be in your followers’ face but do it all over the place so they don’t notice.
Emphasizing sales over quality content
If you want to go down as being the most annoying account ever, use your social media feed exclusively as a sales tool. I don’t know about you, but if I walk into a store and am bombarded by sales people who won’t shut up about their promotions, I’ll likely turn right around and leave. This is no different on social media. People hate feeling like they’re being sold to.
While brands’ goals are (naturally) to sell their product or service, they need to be careful how they’re doing it. Instead of just posting a photo of a product and ranting about the current discount or promotional offer, they should be posting unique, well-curated content that just so happens to also be on sale. Basically, when it comes to social media, brands need to be creative enough to offer visually appealing content containing products that people will want to buy. Their content needs to have a story and must have more depth than just a photo of a t-shirt with a promo code in the caption.
For brands that have a hard time connecting with their audience in that way, the use of influencer marketing is the perfect way to circumvent that. To learn more about how influencers are fixing brands’ biggest marketing challenges, click here.
Treating your followers like a burden
If you want to repel people from your brand, treat them like your annoying ex. The worst thing brands can do is to take too long to reply to messages, respond with little interest, or ignore them altogether.
If someone has taken the time and effort to reach out to a brand with a comment or question, the very least the brand can do is treat them with enough respect to answer. By doing this, you’re showing them that you value their time and business.
Another huge no-no is directing questions to your FAQ page. There’s nothing more impersonal than referring their queries to a pre-written web page. If you’re going to take the time to refer them there, take another minute or two and just answer their question directly. Forcing them to jump between social platforms or websites to find an answer is inconsiderate of their time.
The most efficient way to keep up with your followers’ comments and questions is to dedicate chunks of 1-2 hours a day (or several times a day) to dedicate to this alone. This way, you won’t be interrupting your day every time you need to respond to someone.
Posting the same content to all your channels
Sure, if you’re on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, it’s SO much easier to just repost the same content to them all rather than creating separate posts. The problem with this though is that you’re seriously annoying those people who follow you on multiple platforms.
You know those friends who personally send you a Snap, then share it to their Snap Story, then share it again to their Instagram Story? Are they not the worst? That’s what brands are doing when they re-post the same content to all of their platforms. Like, ya, I saw this post already…twice.
On top of it being super annoying, you’re also kind of telling your followers that you’re lazy and would rather just blast out the same content rather than learning each social community and what they want to see separately. Though you can absolutely cross-promote and link one to the other, posting the exact same stuff to Facebook and Instagram, for example, is a huge missed opportunity to properly engage with your followers.
These are just some of the many, many annoying things brands do on social media. For more bad habits to avoid as a brand on social media, stay tuned for Brands’ Most Annoying Habits on Social Media: Part 2.