As a team we’ve worked across some of your favourite brands in social media, from gaming to entertainment, retail to fashion. We’ve tweeted it, we’ve won awards for it. We’ve got the #SocialMediaTshirt.

We love social media and that’s what makes us a great option to help clients get the best from it as a channel - to create brand fame, to connect and engage people. To make brands searched for online above any other.

With this experience comes a few observations we wanted to share with you. Some of the common mistakes or areas we’ve found can often be overlooked but are so, so important to get right.

  • Assuming that people care about your product/service/brand

It’s vital to define your role and purpose in social media. This starts with understanding your brand purpose. Getting under the skin of why you exist, what you offer to customers and how you can better serve them.

We’re all busy right? Our feeds are crowded, noisy even. So think about how to stand out. How your customers or target audience will find or discover you in social. Show how you’re relevant, how you can add value to them and their lives. Encourage engagement yes, but also accept that many audiences will remain passive (and that doesn’t make them less valuable). Stand out for the right reasons, make yourself memorable. Make people search for you, seek you out online and keep your brand front of mind.

  • Creating great content… that nobody sees

I’ve seen it many times. You lovingly create a piece of content, you’re excited to schedule it, rush to ContentCal and watch the reaction, see those likes flooding in, but then… nothing.

Your desk buddy likes it. It reaches only a handful of people. So what went wrong? Sadly networks can’t guarantee an audience… unless you pay, of course. And I’d strongly recommend that ALL content has some form of amplification attached, particularly for big campaigns with specific audiences in mind.

But there are some other things to be mindful of too. The day of the week, the time of the day - how does this sit with your audience? Has the content or campaign been shared across other relevant channels? Could it be strengthened through collaboration with another brand or organisation? Have you included the best hashtags, right handles and tags? Does it encourage engagement or participation? A simple question or poll could improve interactions and make your content instantly more appealing.

The most important thing - push the boundaries. Ban beige. Do something different, something that can make an impact for the category or in culture. Get people talking OUTSIDE of social media about your social media campaign.

  • Confusion on what you’re hoping to achieve OR how you will measure it

Any successful social media strategy relies on being clear from the off on your objectives, ambition and how you will measure success. Work with Rise at Seven and you’ll often hear us talking about how we will make an impact.

Being clear on the current picture, using insight and data from search and social media is essential to framing a pre and post campaign view. Regular reporting on the most meaningful data and interpretation of that data will help to define whether you’ve been successful. And let’s be clear, even the most successful campaigns have learnings.

Use that data to drive future activity. Because social media never ends. Mwahaha!

  • Blanketing the same content on Every. Single. Channel.

We know. It can be tempting. But resizing an asset on Twitter from your Instagram just won’t cut it. Channels vary, audiences differ - so why would the same content work across each and every channel?

There may be occasions when content can and should be used across channels, which is great! Embrace those opportunities! But also consider what you’re looking to achieve, who you want to engage and what they expect in those channels. Create bespoke content where possible to fit natively to the channel, and respect the role and purpose of those platforms.

Your audience will thank you for it.

  • Expecting an immediate return on investment

Remember when your mum told you it was ‘about the journey and not the destination?’ Well that's a bit like social media. It very rarely gives an immediate ROI.

A long term strategy will ensure you stay on track, but you’ll need to plan for shorter term activity and more immediate opportunities - ‘planned reactive’ or reactive may be just as valuable as bigger campaigns. Count the smaller wins, accumulative learnings as successes along the way. They’ll all help to understand what works for your brand to improve your channel strategy and how you connect with audiences online.

What would you add to the list? We’d love to hear from you if you manage social media for clients or brands. Our DMs are always, always open.

Still hungry for more? Read about our social media services from the social media experts here at Rise at Seven.