dontsSo much of social media marketing is common sense. But so many brands make the same common sense mistakes over and over again. Which may mean a reminder is in order. Here are 10 things your social media marketing should never do.

Don’t Be Pushy

Social media marketing is about building a rapport with your prospects, not the hard sell. Don’t push your products too hard, it’s not why people are on social media and it’s only going to send them elsewhere. Your social media presence should gently guide prospects towards your products, not shove them to an online store.

Don’t Ask For Likes

Asking for ‘Likes’ in every Facebook post is even worse than the hard sell. Not only are you applying pressure to people who don’t want to be pressured, but you’re also pressuring them into doing something that offers little direct value to you. Your social media marketing should make prospects actually like your brand, forcing them to Like isn’t likely to lead to sales.

Don’t Post Irrelevant Content

Whenever you post or tweet you should always keep one question in mind, ‘what does this have to do with my brand?’ If the answer is nothing, then don’t post it. You might find a cool story or a funny Meme, and it might get shared. If it’s not being shared amongst prospective customers, what’s the point?

Don’t Be Too Funny

Speaking of funny, there are two social media crimes that are very east to commit with funny posts. The first is being too funny. Yes social media marketing should be fun, but it should remain business appropriate. If your Twitter feed is just a stream of gags, what does that say about your company?

Don’t Try to be Funny

This is an easy trap to fall into, but also an easy one to avoid. When you post something on social media, don’t force a gag in for the sake of it. If you have a funny comment, or find amusing brand-related content, that’s great, but don’t force it. The easy way to avoid this is to stop trying to be funny. If you find yourself thinking ‘how can I make this funny?’ you need to stop and think about why you’re posting the content in the first place.

Don’t Be Too Serious

Of course, that doesn’t mean that you can’t throw in a few funny posts. Sharable content is one of the main social media marketing targets and people share things that are funny. It’s also important that you don’t come across as too serious. Because that’s not far from boring and people really don’t share boring.

Don’t Mention Politics or Religion

This should be an obvious one but brands break this rule over and over. Unless you only ever want to do business with people who share the exact same political and religious view that you have, just don’t mention either. These kinds of posts will scare away far more customers than they could ever win.

This is a simple one, but one that people often miss in their rush to get that great content out there. Every post should guide prospects to a location where they can be converted. That means blogs with CTAs or landing pages. If you have space on a tweet and it doesn’t have a link, it needs one.

Don’t Ignore Questions

You’re on Facebook and Twitter for social media marketing purposes, not customer service. Your customers won’t see it that way though. They expect to get answers from your social presence. Even if the answer is just to give contact details for customer service. If you don’t respond at all, it looks like you don’t care.

Don’t Stop

The most important ‘don’t’ on this list. Once you start posting content, and your social accounts start to gain a following, don’t stop. If people get used to a certain level of engagement, they’ll be unhappy when it drops off. No social presence just means people don’t know who you are; a social presence that disappears might damage your brand.

There is one thing you can do to avoid each of these mistakes. Simply ask yourself, ‘why am I posting this?’ before every post. If you can’t answer it, or it falls into one of the categories above; don’t post it.

Download 10 Reasons to Monitor Social Media and get that competitive edge.

Read more: