Most Bloggers Are Using Social Media For The Wrong Reasons

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A vital part of your online media empire is your social pages. Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus – whatever networks you have chosen to amass a following on, these pages are huge assets to your business when used properly.

We’re all told as beginning bloggers that we need to start social pages for our blogs. We’re told to share links to our content and other people’s content on our pages. We’re told that we can also use our pages to make money. However, beyond that, we’re left out in the dark, wandering aimlessly as we not only try to build a following, but keep our following engaged with our posts.

This has unfortunately but understandably led to some pretty bad behavior, and the majority of people have failed to realize where the real power behind social media lies. 

Let’s First Talk About What NOT To Do

 

Focus Solely On Driving Traffic

Social media can be a great way to drive traffic to your website. I get it. Heck, this is one of the methods I talk a bit about in my free traffic building eCourse.

However, this is where I see social media usage end for so many bloggers out there.

Share links to your content, hope some of your followers also share it, and get a few easy clicks to your website. Cool.

But hey, the sad reality is that most of your following isn’t even going to see the post you share. It’ll be gone in seconds on Twitter, and Facebook will likely show it to only a tiny percentage of your total following unless you pay to promote it.

No doubt your social profiles can drive a notable amount of traffic, but traffic is definitely not the #1 reason bloggers should be using social media.

Selling Directly

While it is possible to directly make sales from your social media pages, this is largely a waste of time for most people.

The fact of the matter is, people do not follow you for the point of being advertised to. Not to mention, most people just aren’t in a buying mood when they’re browsing Facebook. While I have made sales for my products through my Facebook page, it is certainly not something I count on and direct promotions for my products are not at all a frequent occurrence.

Facebook ads are another story, but forget the idea of using your Facebook page as a platform for direct sales. It serves an equally important purpose. Embrace it.

Here’s The Main Purpose Of Social Media For Bloggers

Brand awareness.

That’s it.

When you actually take the time to hand-write messages for your social media pages, your following gets to know you. They see you and they are thinking about you when they would have otherwise not been doing so.omnipresence business

This perpetuates itself. The more people see you when they’re not expecting to, the more they think about you and your brand, even when you are not around. This is especially true when you deliver good messages that have an impact on people.

Sure, my Facebook posts may only reach 1-2% of my total audience. It doesn’t matter because I’m posting 10 times a day, day in and day out. Do I slip in my links to my articles? Absolutely. Do I promote my products on my page? Absolutely.

But only because I want people thinking about me and my products constantly. This action alone indirectly leads to more sales, and does so without you having to push people and come off as overly promotional.

Posting 10 times a day for the purpose of building brand awareness has led to:

  • More sales.
  • More people thinking about me and my brand.
  • More people choosing to visit my website on their own, without having to click on a link to a specific article.
  • More organic likes and referrals.
  • Higher perceived authority.

It works. Be yourself. Let people get to know you. I don’t just share business related information, I share my thoughts about things going on, I share personal pictures from my life, and I talk to people.

It is called social media after all!

I guarantee that whatever your goals are, your results will be better if your following likes you and feels like they know you. You’re never going to get that if you’re only using automated software to share links to your website. That’s not only boring, but it’s about as far from personal and about as far from social as you can possibly get.

Won’t This Make Your Audience Mad? 

You may be wondering if posting extremely often is going to frustrate your followers – especially if a good amount of this content is not directly related to your business.

The truth is, we do not and we can not know. Nobody is ever going to agree with everything you do, but you need to identify what’s important.

I don’t know about you, but I’d rather have a following of 10,000 people that are thinking about my brand to the point of obsession than 100,000 followers who do not interact with me at all.

In a space where people’s news feeds are more cluttered than ever and brands are doing a worse and worse job at really connecting with their following on an emotional level, I believe getting social with social media is only going to become more important and more impactful heading into the future.

Here’s Where You Make Your Sales

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The main point of running a business is not to gain fame, it’s not to make friends, it’s to make money. The other two are fantastic by-products of professional success, but let’s not lose sight of the real target here.

Understand that social media is a great way to generate interest and build awareness of your products, but it’s still your job to close the sales.

The best way to do this is to focus relentlessly on getting people to sign up to your email list when they do arrive on your website.

See: Email Marketing – Build A Huge List Of Engaged Subscribers!

Think about the benefits email marketing offers. Not only is it far more personal, but you can guarantee every message you send will end up in every person’s inbox. Heck, you can even automate the delivery of these messages and make sales consistently as a result. I make the vast majority of my sales not through my social pages, not even through my blog, but through my email list.

Putting email marketing off is one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a blogger. Sign up for a free 30 day trial with GetResponse – the world’s #1 email marketing service for bloggers, and start closing the sales you’ve been missing.

I promise you, if you start focusing on reaping the REAL benefits of social media and then get your followers on your email list, the amount of money your business is making will skyrocket.

Conclusion

How have you been using social media, and how has it worked for you? No two bloggers who are actually active on social networks seem to go about it the same way, so I’m very interested to hear how your strategy has been working for you. I have no doubt that you have something to share that we can all learn from as well!

LEARN HOW TO TRIPLE YOUR WEBSITE TRAFFIC IN 7 DAYS!

About James McAllister

James is the owner of Help Start My Site. He started his first blog at the age of 11, and has since gone on to start several successful businesses. Here on HelpStartMySite.com, he shares his knowledge that brought him to where he is today. If you want to connect with James, like him on Facebook .

Comments

  1. Hi James

    An eye-opener post indeed and after a lot of changes in policies of most of the social media this topic is quite pertinent to discuss and help bloggers don’t waste their time to get un-achievable things from there.

    You are right now our shares are not as broadly displayed on Facebook as it used to be a few years ago. Now FB people are quite smart and have concluded their promotional phase and entered into their sales phase; so we too being online marketers follow their suite and never rely on click by chance kind of things while promoting our posts.

    Many thanks for sharing this very thought-provoking post that really tells the actual purpose of working on social media.

    Have a great rest of the week

      (Quote)
    Mi Muba recently posted…18 shameful reasons why influencers are not noticing youMy Profile

    • Hey Mi Muba!

      Yeah, Facebook reach is a joke these days but as entrepreneurs we can either whine about things or we can use them to our advantage. The fact of the matter is that we’re never going to get the organic reach we used to, but Facebook is still the world’s most popular social media platform so we must adapt.

      I do think there are times for promoted posts – when you are running a sale or have something you can measure a direct ROI on, but for normal posts, it’s just not worth it most of the time. Posting often makes up for this in a way and builds brand awareness at the same time – so it’s a win-win in my eyes.

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…You Wouldn’t Believe How Blogging Has Transformed My LifeMy Profile

  2. Hey James,
    You hit the nail on the right spot in this post.
    Most of us have been ‘forced’ to believe and use social media for traffic only. I used the word ‘forced’ because unconsciously, having read everywhere about drawing huge traffic from social media, we have been conditioned to to think it’s main purpose is traffic.

    That’s why out of every 10 posts a bloggers shares on Facebook, 9.5 have a link to a blog post 😉

    If we use it judiciously to promote our brand, the traffic will finally come.

    Thanks for this wonderful post today buddy

      (Quote)
    Enstine Muki recently posted…Website Security Warning ~ Weekend Shock! 534 attacks in 24 hours!My Profile

    • Hey Enstine!

      Exactly, website after website touts about the potential to drive traffic with social media and so many people think that’s all it’s good for – and it can be discouraging when you think you’re doing everything right and you’re hardly getting any clicks.

      The benefits of using social media for brand awareness aren’t always tangible or directly measurable but we know that they are there. And they’re huge!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…Massive Action In Blogging Leads To Massive ResultsMy Profile

  3. Hi James,

    A much needed post here, James. And right on the mark. Social media sharing and linking is not the way to get traffic. Instead, what works for me and what I advice my clients to do is to use Twitter, especially, as means of getting to know other bloggers, including the influencers in your field. Once they get to know you and what you’re about, they’ll share you content with their readers.

    Just yesterday, I had someone contact me who found me by accident when a blogger they were following RTed a link to a post of mine. This happens fairly regularly for me, now that I’ve got a method in place that makes it happen.

    I’ve increased my readers and my email subscribers with other bloggers sharing my content in this way. It’s so much more successful then chasing links and traffic and getting little response. It works because when bloggers with bigger readerships and more influence than you share your content, people pay attention, click and read your content. Because someone they trust and listen to is recommending you to them.

    – Tom

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    Tom Southern recently posted…STILL STRUGGLING TO FIND YOUR NICHE? HERE’S WHY…My Profile

    • Hey Tom! Good to see you.

      Networking on social networks? Who would’ve thought hahaha. I think for us bloggers it’s a great way to build relationships, especially on Twitter as you said because it’s so easy to share other people’s content and speak with influencers directly. You don’t see it so much on Facebook…

      I do think different platforms serve different purposes in terms of your following. Twitter as you have mentioned is a great way for new people to find you, whereas Facebook is better for keeping in contact with the following you’ve already had (since tweets disappear in seconds and Facebook posts are more likely to be seen.) That is a good point. Connecting with influencers on these social platforms is a great way to get your stuff in front of a lot of eyeballs quickly.

      Thank you so much for adding to this post Tom, you’ve mentioned a lot of very useful ideas here!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…7 Universal Life Lessons That Blogging Has Taught MeMy Profile

  4. Hi James

    I’ve rather neglected my Facebook pages of late because I’m getting better results from my blog and email – and there are only so many hours in a day!

    One thing I wish all sharing plugin developers would do is let the sharer have the option to share to a business page, not a a user profile. I would share a lot more posts if I could be sure I could direct them to my business page and not my personal page. Some give the option and some don’t.

    My family have made it quite clear to me that they don’t want business topics on my personal profile LOL.

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    • Hi Joy!

      So am I, but I do believe the long-term value in an engaged social media following is huge and no doubt this will eventually allow me to back off my active marketing a bit. Not to say I don’t love blog commenting, forum posting and all that, but I’m in this for the long-haul and know social followings tend to grow exponentially. I like that.

      Have you tried HootSuite Pro? It’s what I’m using to manage all of my social media pages right now and it’s worked pretty flawlessly so far. I haven’t had any reason to really use anything else, so you may consider checking out at least the free version!

      In any case, always good to talk with you Joy!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…In Blogging, The Most Important Investment You Can Make Is In YourselfMy Profile

  5. Social media sites must be used nor only to get traffic but also to connect people. Most sicial pages only share links to their blogs and that ends the social media usage. What people must do is to talk to their audience and connect.

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    Imran Soudagar recently posted…Must read booksMy Profile

  6. Hi James,

    I like your explanation skills, It will be very helpful to newbies to understand importance of social media. I have seen that newbies make so many mistake in beginning of their blogging carrier as they do not have proper knowledge of it and they just want to focus on traffic rather than relationship or branding of their blog.

    Thanks for sharing do’s and don’ts about social media

      (Quote)
    Anant Patel recently posted…How To Start a Blog – Free Beginner’s GuideMy Profile

    • Hi Anant! Thank you so much.

      In the end it’s those relationships that truly matter – especially if we’re selling something. People are far more likely to buy from people and brands they feel like they know and can trust. Social media can be a great way to accomplish this, but not if we’re constantly pushing articles or products in people’s faces. Not only is it annoying, but it’s not really social now is it?

      Social media is a great platform for building relationships and branding – even moreso than just driving traffic. So in my eyes, it only makes sense to use it for everything it’s capable of, especially considering building brand awareness is even more effective than just dropping links.

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…How To Quickly Create A Minimum Viable Product For Your BlogMy Profile

  7. Hey James,

    Well I agree, most people do social media ALL wrong and then wonder why they aren’t getting any good results. It’s just sad, honestly but I do love it when you explain it to them and they walk away with those “aha” moments. Gosh I love those.

    I don’t post on my Facebook page any longer mainly because I was doing what you suggest and I wasn’t getting the results. Of course I wasn’t posting 10 times a day but it was probably around 4 to 5. No, they were NOT all just posts but other things that did help people interact more. I think when Facebook changed their algorithms though, most of my content wasn’t even being seen.

    Now Twitter is a whole other story and I love that platform. I have the best time connecting with people over there and through that I do make a lot of new connections. As you know, I am about meeting people and building relationships and that does mean friendships as well. For what I do though it does benefit me and my business but I totally understand what you’re saying. We’re here to make money and not friends. If it can lead to that then I say go for it.

    I agree with email, totally so anyone not building their list and those relationships then I definitely would hope they’d start today.

    Great advice, thanks for sharing and hope you’re enjoying your week.

    ~Adrienne

      (Quote)
    Adrienne recently posted…Every Entrepreneur That Blogs Regrets Not Doing This SoonerMy Profile

    • Hi Adrienne!

      The Facebook changes have been frustrating for sure. The sad thing is that it’s probably only going to get worse. Interesting to see where Facebook will stop when it comes down to it, a sudden increase in advertisements is part of what brought MySpace down and sometimes I wonder if Facebook isn’t too big to fail.

      I’m glad to hear Twitter has been good for you, outside of relationship building with other bloggers it really does little for me to be honest. I do think it is good for that purpose but honestly I question how good it can really be for anything else – my tweets were seen over 10,000 times last month but I’m lucky if I get 100 clicks a month. More importantly it’s hard to really deliver a meaningful message with so few characters and the fact that tweets are gone in seconds. I think we’re right to get everything we can out of it with the connections though.

      Hope you’re enjoying your week too Adrienne, thank you for stopping by!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…You Wouldn’t Believe How Blogging Has Transformed My LifeMy Profile

      • Hey James,

        I know that they said that with Facebook, your more promotional content won’t be seen but I did a few tests and hardly anything of mine was being seen and I would ask fun questions, which my fans loved and of course share inspiring words as well as good content. I finally just gave up because I didn’t want to build my audience on Facebook knowing the direction they would go. If I decided to run ads later on to direct them to my blog then that was something I was willing to consider.

        With any other platform though it’s about making the connections. Sure, you can’t have a long conversation on Twitter but chat with someone enough then you can schedule a time to either speak to them or take it to email. Continue the conversation elsewhere but you can have a meaningful and awesome conversation with a bunch of really cool people.

        Thank you for responding and I’m definitely having a great week. Hope you are as well.

        ~Adrienne

          (Quote)

        • The direction Facebook is heading is definitely scary, especially for us marketers. As entrepreneurs we’ll have to adapt but it isn’t always easy.

          You make a good point with the connections. I do think Twitter is often better at generating direct engagement, especially with other influencers. My concern is with scale. I know some day I’ll have over 100,000 followers, and regardless of how hard I tried I couldn’t ever talk with a fraction of them. A good problem to have I suppose, but if I still want to get my message to all of those people and truly have it resonate with them, I don’t think I could do it on Twitter. I doubt even celebrities would get much accomplished in that regard if it weren’t for the media blowing up everything they tweet.

          Strategic networking seems like a great use for Twitter and I know you certainly know more than me in that regard so I will take your word for it!

            (Quote)
          James McAllister recently posted…7 Universal Life Lessons That Blogging Has Taught MeMy Profile

  8. Thanks for sharing several excellent points James!

    And for some odd reason, a ton of newbies, believe
    they can be anti social on the various social media sites, like
    twitter and constantly send canned, automated messages!

    And basically avoid the whole point of social media, which is to
    be social!

    You have shared some keen insights and hopefully
    your incredibly practical advice, won’t fall on deaf ears!Thanks!

      (Quote)
    Mark recently posted…Three Incredibly Simple Ways Savvy Small Business Owners Profit From The Back End Of Their Businesses!Part TwoMy Profile

    • Hey Mark!

      Yeah, I can’t believe how many people just set up automated programs to handle all of their social media profiles. Don’t get me wrong, I use automation too, but I also take the time to actually write status updates and tweets as well.

      Personalization and interaction are huge, especially today when so many people seem to have lost touch of that. Nobody wants to feel like they’re talking to a computer program, so putting yourself out there is one of the greatest ways to build that authentic connection with your following.

      Thanks for stopping by Mark, hope you’re enjoying your week!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…In Blogging, The Most Important Investment You Can Make Is In YourselfMy Profile

  9. Hi James

    Somehow I missed this post last week, but happy I’m here now anyway

    You make some really good points here about social media. To me, it’s mainly about relationship building and, as you say, the brand.

    Interesting to see your comment about your Facebook page. Currently, I only post once a day (if that) to my fb page. The results are abysmal. (I get much more engagement etc on my personal profile than on my fan page.) But after reading your post, I’m thinking that it might be worthwhile to try your strategy of making 10 posts a day.

    I always like your posts, James. You include useful information combined with ideas that stretch the mind. Gotta be good

    Kim

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    Kim Willis recently posted…How Quickly Can I Make Money in a Home Business?My Profile

    • Hey Kim!

      I really do think overfocusing on direct traffic from posts causes a lot of people to partake in actions that are actually detrimental to that particular goal, not to mention annoying for their audience.

      Facebook’s algorithm changes have been disappointing for sure, but as entrepreneurs we roll with the punches and adapt to our situation right? I do think for many businesses it’s still #1, although both Twitter and Google+ are good in the make money online markets. I had high hopes for Google+ and was really hoping it was going to take off as I actually like it better than Facebook, but it just hasn’t happened.

      I too get more engagement on my personal profile as well as in groups but unfortunately I do not think it’s quite as scalable. Facebook pages can still be quite effective so yeah, I’d definitely recommend trying it out and seeing how things work. You can’t always measure the results directly, but over time you can definitely notice the effect it’s having!

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      James McAllister recently posted…The Ultimate HootSuite Pro ReviewMy Profile

  10. Hi James,

    I see different things in social media and after reading what you wrote it makes sense. I cannot be 100% sure of what my audience likes if I don’t try things out. As you said, 10 posts a day can be manageable though it really depends on how much you write and what the topics are about. I prefer having posts that my audience engages on instead of having too many and none pays attention.

    You are right, the purpose is to make people interested so as to have clients. When there is no clear goal, the results will be different. If I value fame over money, then I have to work on a different way to approach the audience. Thank you for this wonderful article!

    Zaria

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    Psychic Nest recently posted…How to Survive Being an EmpathMy Profile

    • Hi Zaria!

      You’re right, engagement is the most important metric, as a whole not of nothing is still nothing. Of course, the two aren’t exclusive – you can be posting a ton and still have a lot of engagement with each individual post. I think this is what’s going to have to happen going forward, especially with Facebook since most of your content will never even be seen by most of your following.

      An effective social media strategy has an end goal in mind and is centered around achieving that end goal. I see social media as a part of my system that leads to my own personal end goal of product sales. However, it’s only a step in the process, and social media helps move people towards that next step if that makes sense.

      It’s great to meet you Zaria, I’m glad you found this post helpful and I hope to talk with you again soon!

        (Quote)
      James McAllister recently posted…The 7 Rules Of Selling All Bloggers Must FollowMy Profile

  11. Hi James. I have to agree with you. I see very few people on social media who are actually being social. Most of the bloggers that I know post a link to their latest blog post or sales offer and disappear. It’s a shame really because I’m on there looking for stuff to share with my followers and I would be more likely to share their hashtag-laden link posts if they had other things to share as well.

    Like you said, being on social media is about building brand recognition. I think that people would want their brands to represent more than just shameless plugs.

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    Ben recently posted…When Is the Best Time to Start an Online Business?My Profile

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