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If your social media marketing is ineffective, you may be the problem.
If your social media marketing is ineffective, you may be the problem.

Why some people fail in social media marketing

There are many reasons why business owners struggle to manage – and get results – from their social media marketing, writes MANDY EDWARDS.

Social media – and ‘digital marketers’ – are a dime a dozen. They’re everywhere and many people think they can aptly manage a business’ social media accounts with no prior marketing experience whatsoever.

About 75 per cent of the social media marketers I met when I started my business nine years ago are no longer practising social media or digital marketing. Some were given other opportunities, and many just couldn’t cut it.

I hate to see businesses fail and people give up. I know how much time, energy, love and money goes into running a business.

However, there are some who just are not cut out to be business owners.

Harsh, but true. On that note, let’s return to social media marketing.

This is an area of marketing that a great deal of your time; you have to dedicate time to staying up-to-date with the latest changes – and there are tonnes each and every year.

Additionally, you have to constantly review which platforms people are using, and ways to integrate marketing activities into your overall business plan.

Some people excel at these things, and many are just trying to keep their head above water.

So, why is that?

Here are four reasons business owners do not succeed at being social media marketers – hopefully, we can use them to show us how to succeed.

  • They do not take the time to educate themselves and fall behind – Social media is constantly changing and if you are not dedicated to understanding the latest trends, terms of service changes and new features on each app, you can bet your competitors are – and they will take advantage of that.

    If you follow any ‘big name’ businesses on social media, you will see how they keep up with everything.

    To simplify the process, I consult resources such as The Grow Blog, Sprout Social Insights, and Social Media Today to stay up to date.
  • They have no marketing or sales experience – I know I’ll take some heat with that statement, but not everyone is a born marketer.

    "If you are not dedicated to understanding the latest trends, terms of service changes and new features on each app, you can bet your competitors are"
    Of course there are successful people in this industry with no marketing experience, but I’m referring to people who have no idea what to do in a sales call, and who don’t know that social media marketing is more than just posting to social accounts.

    I know people who have decided to start handling social media for their business because they love to post on their personal Facebook or Instagram account.

    Their graphics and captions are full of misspellings and grammatical errors.

    Next thing you know, they hit the ground running with no idea what they are doing, or any sense of what marketing really is. The goal of social media marketing, like all forms of marketing, is increasing sales, so having experience in this area is valuable.
  • They can’t establish who their target market is – This is something a lot of business owners struggle with.

    Do you want to serve everyone, or one particular niche?

    Many just float along, with no structure to their social media marketing, until they get fed up with the lack of success.

    That is why you need to have a social media strategy and define your ‘why’ and ‘how’.

    Doing just those two simple things will set you on the track to success.
  • Poor management skills – Many business owners turn to marketing companies or consultants to manage their social media strategy, rather than doing it themselves.

    Unfortunately, I have seen first-hand how this can still lead to poor results.

    Communication skills are very important in this field, so it is important to choose a social media marketing expert who stays in constant contact with you.

    They should be asking you what they could be doing better, and seeking continual feedback in order to strengthen the relationship and provide you with the best service.

    In conclusion, there are many reasons and circumstances that keep someone from being an effective social media marketer – and those listed above can also be applied to more than just the social media marketing industry.

Mandy Edwards

Mandy Edwards is founder of ME Marketing Services, a social media and management consultancy. Visit:

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