Social Media Marketing (SMM) is really like having a casual conversation with your friends.  It is also like getting that unexpected phone call from your family and catching up.  SMM is really just about getting a conversation started. There’s many companies jumping on to the social media marketing bandwagon that really misses the whole point and they are trying to hard.

Find below a couple of mistakes you should always try to avoid when starting a social media marketing initiative.

Not listening

Social media is all about being conversational.  It means that two or more people are listening and then starting the conversation by interacting.  If you are only focused on broadcasting (traditional marketing), then you are not really engaging at a social level. The building of relationships always requires listening to really understand the other person’s point of view.

Self Promoting

By not providing value and always promoting yourself is a big mistake.  The social media world is all about entering into conversations and it relies on participation.  Everwhere you will find starting to blog, social network, spamming Twitter that only spends their energy marketing themselves.  This is really a one way sign to tell people to run turn away.

Not conversational

Never try to control and force your point of view.  Your only goal is to build trust, listen and understand the other person’s point of view.  Of course you want to voice your point of view, but always avoid to criticize and be offending.  Also, avoid being too formal, proper and boring.  Let your personality show by interacting.

Too much participation

If you “try to participate in too many forms/channels of social media, your profile will become spotty and inconsistent.  Always experiment with a wide range of tools, but only find the ones you really enjoy and that you are good at.  Always settle in on your favourites and focus.  You will also enjoy it more and you can build solid relationships.

Giving up

Social Media Marketing is about sustaining and creating lasting relationships.  It really takes time and many conversations to get the snowball moving.  Never think of it as an instant solution.  Be prepared for a very long-term of commitment or don’t start your social media marketing initiative at all.