You know how bulls get mad at the color red? Well, the truth is they don’t. Their rage or whatever has them charging in bullfights is actually the matador’s taunting, not the red piece of cloth he’s waving around.
Myths like this one exist everywhere, even in the digital world, where everything is supposed to be based on complex data. It’s easy to understand why, though. Take social media, for instance. Just because some people have logged in thousands of hours on a particular platform, they might think they know the inner workings of how the platform works and all there is to know about social media marketing.
Much like any marketing strategy in the past decade, social media has had plenty of time accumulating some pretty big myths. Data has disproven many of them; however, some marketers are still holding on to some. Some social media myths are harmless, though. It’s the ones impacting how social media professionals work with the rest of their marketing teams that should be paid attention to.
As a marketer in a highly competitive environment like what we have now, it’s important to separate reality from myth to create social strategies that work.
To help you separate fact from fiction, here are some of the most common social media myths we’ve drudged up out there. You’ve probably heard some from your colleagues or friends already. So let’s dive in.
Ever since buying followers in bulk became a thing, people have lost faith in follower counts. And ever since, it has become the face of vanity metrics. It makes sense too. After all, what use would a high follower count be if your engagement is low?
The follower count isn’t going away anytime, though, for a good reason. No matter what anyone tells you, it does count quite a bit.
According to data from Sprout, nine out of 10 customers will purchase from brands they follow on any social media platform. 86% will then choose that brand over any competitor.
Even if you consider the “90-9-1” rule, follower count still matters. According to this rule, 1% of social media users create content, 9% share, like, and comment, and 90% simply lurk.
But just because they’re lurking doesn’t mean they’re entirely useless. Sure, lurkers may not be contributing to your engagement rate, but they’re still valuable. Around one out of three customers learn about or discover new products, services, or brands through social media.
Another social media myth is how some people say that measuring success on a social platform is impossible. But really, we think we all know better. Smart marketers know that you have to define what you consider as success first.
Some brands, for instance, consider brand awareness as their priority on social media. They follow their content reach, profile visits, and story views to track their success on that front.
Sometimes, you don’t even need third-party tools to measure your social media success. For engagement, for example, you simply have to look at the number of comments, shares, saves, or profile visits you have.
Another concern here is that monitoring these results takes forever. That only happens if you’re not using the right tools and skills. So many social media tools allow you to make monitoring so much easier. For some, you can even set alerts. If you’re on the lookout for engagement, you simply have to check back on your accounts every hour or two. That’s still within the time frame customers expect you to respond anyhow.
“Let’s get this to go viral!”
You’ve probably heard that somewhere, but as it is, virality is more luck than strategy.
We get it. People want their turn in the spotlight; however, having unique content isn’t the most crucial part of becoming the best on social.
Sure, you can go viral, and people will remember you, but then what? The reality is that customers believe that what makes a brand best in social is strong customer service. This is closely followed by audience engagement and transparency.
It’s not about how many people you can get to view your products or services, but rather how you treat those interacting with your brand.
So next time someone asks you to make something “go viral,” offer these more impactful alternatives instead:
Remember, you can never be too prepared. That’s why it’s wise to outline a process for responding to timely issues that may arise with your customers.
Customers expect fast replies, and most expect them within the day. Improving your response time will improve your customer retention and customer loyalty.
Nowadays, everyone is telling everyone to get into video because it is indeed valuable for achieving social media goals. People simply love it. Despite this, video is still underused compared to photos and posts containing links. They account for less than 15% of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter content.
This means that many marketers may still feel that video production is out of their reach. While there are many simple ways to create videos nowadays, many marketers might think it’s still too much to take on. They will adjust, though.
More and more platforms are creating video-focused features meaning demands for videos will only rise. Getting ahead of these demands by expanding can help brands maintain a social presence without burning out their current teams.
Influencer marketing is still going strong in the marketing world but not before. The near-constant exposure to paid advertising has Gen Z moving further away from brands.
If you want to impact Gen Z, you should prioritize the everyday influencer. They’re more likely to purchase something recommended by someone. They also rely on reviews from other products on social.
Incorporating reviews and user-generated content into your social mix can create more meaningful connections and play into their preferences better.
It’s social media. It’s easy for people to get caught up in things they think are true, especially when they’re not in tune with social media’s constant changes. That’s why social marketers have to advocate for themselves by educating these people. It will benefit everybody.