99 ways to die in social media — choose one!

It sounds like the name of a movie! How exciting. I can picture one social media manager with a gun and another about to die. But, it doesn’t really work like that, does it? There are many ways to sabotage yourself in social media. People do it all the time. The question is, what are we doing to ruin ourselves, and how do we do it? How can we stop doing it? Here is my list of ways to ruin your social presence on the internet.

1. Not posting regularly
If you post five things at the same time and then do not post for a few days, your audience will not grow or be engaged properly. Use an auto-posting software system so that you can post on a regular basis. You might post every four hours, or only during peak hours of engagement which might be during the day. Or you could post twice per hour twenty-four hours a day to attract an interactional crowd.

2. Posting too much
If you post too much, you are spamming your audience. Each social media platform is different. On Twitter I would not post more than 40 posts per day, and 20 is much more ideal. On Facebook I would not exceed 10 posts per day. LinkedIn and Google plus I would do only 5 per day.

3. Posting content your audience doesn’t like
I test my content out before posting it. The first time I post something, it the crowd doesn’t like it, I’ll remove it after an hour or so. If I retweet something, if the crowd doesn’t favorite it at least once, I’ll get rid of it. Post stuff your audience likes — or perish!

4. Monotony kills
If you post the same content or the same kind of content too much, your audience will get bored. Yes, focus on your core industry specific niche, but also have related content from semi-focused specialties. If you specialize in widgets, you can post about the economy, and manufacturing of other related projects as well, plus news and some pretty photos.

5. Not following people
If you don’t follow enough people on social media, your audience will never grow to critical mass. You need to follow as many relevant people as you can.

6. Now following people back
The easiest way to experience slow growth on social media is to fail to follow people back who follow you. They will unfollow you if you don’t follow them.

7. Focusing on too many networks
It is best to focus on a single social media network for your business. I would devote your social media time 50% on blogging, 40% on your primary social media platform and divide the other 10% on all the other networks combined. If one of your lesser focuses starts panning out, you can always change your focus. Social media is always changing, so your primary network today might no longer be benefitting you in a few years.

8. Not having good content
If you have a blog, the number of posts you have is not a critical number. What matters is how many really popular posts you have. If your blog has 2000 posts and 50 of them are super popular, then you can promote those posts regularly on your various social channels and get a ton of traffic.

9. Following the wrong sub-groups (profiles) of people
If you follow people who are relevant to your industry, but from a sub-group that doesn’t interact much, you lose. I attract many people who call themselves “entrepreneurs.” I think the term represents people who lack a day job more than people who run their own business. Entrepreneurs did not share my posts much at all. However, small businesses that were not relevant to my industry were sharing my content as I run a business blog and they are businesses. CEO’s and HR people also shared my contents. Keep track of who is favoriting and sharing and then profile them like they do on the TV show Criminal Minds. I guess being an entrepreneur doesn’t mean as much as I feel it should mean.

10. Asthetic appeal
It is hard to be informative, interactive and also good looking. Publishing good looking photos on your feed is easy. They might not get shared much. However, you will attract more followers (a lot more) if you have breathtaking photos between your posts. Track your progress each way. If you follow 500 people per day, post just tweets for two days, and then publish tweets and amazing photos mixed together for another two days and see how many more followers you got. Please note that weekend traffic is very different from traffic Monday to Friday so do your experiment starting on a Monday.

11. Regurgitate the right amount
Some people publish the same stuff over and over again. That could be a mistake if that is all you do. Others realize that popular content from the past should be shared again, but mixed in with other stuff. The key is to figure out when your crowd is absolutely tired of your old material and phase it out. I’ll favorite my own stuff that gets results. When I post the contents again, I unfavorite it, and then favorite all over again if it did well. That way if it doesn’t do well the 3rd or 7th time around, it will be dropped permanently from the favorite list. This system gets me a lot of traffic since people like my popular posts!

12. Failing to have lists
Lists help me organize posts from my absolute favorite sources. I retweet from my favorite sources regularly. But, I also mix in retweets from sources that are unknown to me if I see something hot. Many people are not that organized. But, Twitter allows you to have lists — so use that function.

13. Failing to interact
Interacting doesn’t work well on my Twitter profile, but the pros say you need to grow your following by interacting. If your crowd likes to mingle, ask them questions or respond to their posts. Get to know them. It is easier in a niche business. But, regardless, try it and see what happens and try different approaches.

14. Posting at the wrong time of day
In my industry, posting at night is fine, but posting on the weekend gets you ignored. For my other Twitter, daytime is the right time and after 4pm is not optimal at all. Find out when your crowd responds most and focus on that window of time.

15. Foreign languages?
If you are multi-lingual, it might be better to pick a language and stick to it. If I see posts in Spanish or Arabic, I am tempted to un-follow such a person as I am weak in both of those languages. I stick to English. You might be better off having two profiles — one for English, and one for Arabic for example.

16. Putting too many followers on a list
If you have lists, but put 4000 followers on a list — you’ve defeated the reason for having a list. Lists are to focus only on specific profiles that deliver high quality focused results. How can you be focused if there are 4000 people on a list? My biggest list has 52 people, and they are all very focused. I have other lists with only about 10 to 12 accounts. Stay focused my friends.

17. Commenting too much
When people see your profile for the first time it is often in a pop up window which shows commentary. If you make a dumb comment on someone else’s post, your new prospects will not follow you. Your commentary needs to be attractive to a stranger as well as to the person who you are commenting to — as long as it is at the top of your feed. If it is buried then it doesn’t matter. If you do comment, post some good material after and spread your comments out.

18. Not sticking to it
The biggest mistake you can make on social media is giving up, or having lapses. If you want to grow big, you have to keep at it. Make it a priority or do it on the side. But, don’t half do social media. Social media needs to be done either 90 minutes a day or 5 minutes a day. Anything in between will waste too much of your time without getting you the right long term results.

19. Photos help get you more attention
If you tweet just text, you get less attention than posting with photos. Picking dull photos won’t help much either. But, if you pick very relevant high quality photos, your account could really grow — so try it. Experiment with different photos and see what happens.

20-99. Sorry, that I don’t have any more ways to die on social media. But, you can see what mistakes you make and learn from them. You can read otherpeople’s recommendations as well.

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