Thursday, December 26, 2013

Top Social Media Mistakes Authors Made in 2013

by Edie Melson

I was originally going to include this information in my Monday post on the Top Blogging Mistakes Authors Made in 2013, but the post as just too long. So today we’re going to continue the fun with Top Social Media Mistakes Authors Made in 2013.

These are things I see on a daily basis as I hang out on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus and Pinterest. They may seem small, but many can cost you followers, mentions, and even friends.

Social Media Mistakes
Hogging the Steam. This is when there are multiple posts, from the same poster, in a row. Folks are better about this on Twitter and Facebook, but not on Google Plus and Pinterest. I’ve had to unsubscribe from several Google Plus folks because they are hogging my inbox. So do yourself a favor and leave ten to fifteen minutes between updates—on ALL networks!

Becoming the Me Show. Social media marketing is NOT the same thing as mass marketing. Although you have the potential to reach millions, you cannot treat social media as advertising. Constantly posting about yourself and your books will lose you contacts, NOT gain you sales. Use the medium the way it was designed—to build relationships—then let your friends advertise your products.

Giving Away the Ending with Your Updates. The key to social media updates is to encourage people to interact with you. You either want them to share what you’ve shared, comment on your update, or visit your site. But composing your update in a way that bypasses the interaction will hurt you. For example, if I wanted people to visit my blog and find out why I use Hootsuite I would not use the following tweet:

Use Hootsuite to schedule your social media updates and save time.

I would use this one instead:
Find out how I schedule social media updates and save valuable time.

With the first tweet, there’s no reason for someone to visit my blog.

Not Being a Team Player. Social media is a reciprocal proposition. If someone follows you, it’s expected that you will follow back. If someone says something nice about you, return the favor. Ignoring his aspect of social media is a guaranteed way to make your numbers drop.

Inconsistent Updates. Social media is a network with a short attention span. Building a healthy presence means you need to be consistent. Updating twenty-five times today and not showing up again for three weeks kills any kind of momentum. Instead, six to eight updates every day, five days a week will build a following much faster.

Lack of Focus. Just like blogging, your audience comes to expect certain things from you. If they can’t figure you out, they won’t bother following you for long.

Valuing your Friends over Your Followers. I’m not talking about Facebook friends either. With social media your audience is your priority. We all want to help our friends promote their books, but ultimately we must value our audience. Go ahead and share about your friends’ books, but only if your audience will find the information valuable. Truthfully, you aren’t helping anyone advertising books to an audience that won’t buy it.

Hashtag Overload. Hashtags are great—until they aren’t. Using one to two hashtags in a social media update will increase your audience. But add a third or fourth in there and you’ll loose numbers.

Chaos Reigns. By this I mean you’re not utilizing a scheduling program, like Hootsuite. If you’re doing it all on your own, you’re wasting valuable time. Learn how to use a scheduler and redeem some valuable writing time.

These are the big ones I see on a daily basis. But again, I want to dig a little deeper. It’s time for the second part of Monday’s poll. Share what makes you unfollow someone on social media.

I’m going to add to the list I’m compiling about blogging and I’ll publish the results so we can all recognize the things we need to avoid. Go ahead and vote for anything listed in the post above. I’d really like to get a good idea of what irritates you all. It will be interesting to see what we come up with.

Don’t forget to join the conversation!



  1. Definitely the first one. When I see 2 or 3 posts in a row, typically on Twitter, 1 or 2 minutes apart , by the same author, I automatically skip the person's name. I see no point in reading it.

  2. The post contains great deal of information pointing to the common mistakes committed in social media marketing and we believe it will help us to avoid these mistakes in the upcoming year 2014.

  3. This is a nice post in an interesting line of content.Thanks for sharing this article, great way of bring such topic to discussion.

  4. Thanks for the warning!
    Will definitely avoid these missteps in the future

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