When it comes to social media, there is a lot of information out there about what to do. It’s also important to understand what not to do. Everyone has their own strategy for social media. As a result, they are going to use it differently. But there are certain unofficial rules that everyone should make an effort to follow, no matter their strategy.

Linking accounts

You’ve probably seen those tweets that looks something like: “Hey, check out this interesting article on our blog about how to…. (link).”

This is the result of linked Facebook and Twitter accounts. The link that appears in the tweet will take you to the original post on the author’s Facebook page, where you can find out the dramatic conclusion. Would you take the time to go to a different page, just to see what this tweet was actually about? Probably not. Twitter moves so fast, who has the time?

Different social networks serve different purposes. Linking accounts assumes that each network acts the same. When you link your social networks, you make it inconvenient for people to see your content, and it looks like you need a lesson in social media.

For more information on what you can get out of each social network, check out our blog post: A small business guide to social media.

Only talking about yourself

Despite what some businesses think, social media is not an advertising tool. Yes, it is a medium through which you can communicate your key messages, broaden your customer base and provide your audience with information. It is not, however, a broadcasting network for you to promote you and only you. Social media promotes two-way communication, not one-way.

If you only post about your business, people will get bored very fast. Mix up your content. It’s ok to share information about your company, that’s why many people connect with you. But make sure there is a balance between company news, industry news and general conversation. If you just say the same thing over and over again, your Facebook page might start to look like a self-updating billboard.

Not responding

As previously mentioned, social media is all about conversation. If followers and fans ask you questions, make sure you respond as soon as possible. Otherwise, they will feel like you are not listening. When others see those unanswered questions, they will know that you don’t respond to your audience. This creates a negative image of your brand.

If you have to dedicate someone strictly to answering questions on social media, so be it. People feel a lot better when someone is listening; show them you are.

While everyone will find their own style on social media, it is important to have the basics covered. Use each network separately, share a variety of content and respond to your audience. This will help you get the most out of your social media efforts.