7 Reasons your social media strategy is failing


It’s easy to put together what you think will be a wildly successful social media strategy only to be let down by making one of these common but easy to avoid mistakes. See what they are and the simple actions you can take to avoid them. You’ve done your research, planned it all out and put together an amazing social media strategy that’s going bring in new customers and transform your business. You’re going to build your following, save money and make more sales all thanks to that little blue bird.

Trouble is, you’ve been at it for a while and it’s not working. People aren’t engaging, and they don’t seem particularly interested in what you have to say. Don’t worry, we’ve all been there.

Chances are, you’re doing one or more of these seven common no-no’s, and it’s limiting your ability to get the true value out your social media efforts.


Not Listening

Author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Stephen R. Covey said, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” He couldn’t have said it better, yet most people only engage in social media to talk rather than listen. Set aside some time to dive in deep and aim to understand exactly what your audience’s pain points are so you can engage with them on multiple levels. This level of insight is invaluable and you’ll gain far more than just an end sale.

Action: Focus at least one post each week on learning more about your audience and customers by asking questions or inviting feedback.


Posting Irrelevant (or just off the mark) Content

If you do the above point right you should be well on your way to posting content that your audience loves, and loves to share. It goes without saying that content needs to be relevant and relatable, but some other ways to make content more sticky are by:

  • Mixing it up – know what your audience loves, but don’t stick to that 100% of the time or you risk sounding like a robot (see below).
  • Telling a story – A story instantly makes content more relatable and is even better if you can involve your audience, so don’t be afraid to showcase customer successes or interesting staff stories.
  • Getting visual – A picture paints a thousand words, so include videos, photos and interesting graphics to break up text and better tell your stories.



There’s a lot of research supporting the importance of consistency in communication, and we all know that social media is no different. With so many free automation tools now available, it shouldn’t be difficult or exhausting to make sure your posts are frequent, consistent and published at the optimal time for your audience to digest and share.

Action: Get in the habit of having content ready at least a week beforehand and scheduled in using an automation tool. Then supplement this with additional ad-hoc content to keep it fresh, relevant and engaging.


You Sound Like a Robot

One of the biggest mistakes businesses make on social media is having zero personality. Pumping out links to industry related articles isn’t just robotic, it’s boring. Instead, know exactly who your audience is and connect with them emotionally. If several people use your social media accounts, establish some editorial guidelines that align with your values and everyone on the team can embody. If you’re a freelancer, consultant or your business depends on your personal brand, be yourself and let your personality shine through.

Action: Ensure at least one post each week focuses on a more human element of your business or personal brand. This could be anything from the office dog to your favourite lunch spot. Get creative but stay genuine.


You Sound Like a Salesman

Yes, the end goal is that social media helps you increase sales, but your core motivation first and foremost needs to be focused on building trusted relationships with your audiences. This is all about connecting with them emotionally and switching from a push to a pull strategy, where over time your audience simply can’t wait to be your customers and are knocking on your door rather than the other way around.


Spreading Yourself Too Thin

You don’t need to be all things to all people, and you don’t need to use every single social media channel available, so find what works and invest your energy in that. Consider your product or service and your audience profile. Eg. Some incredibly successful brands have grown out of focusing purely on Instagram as a highly visual channel to display their product.


Unrealistic (or no) Objectives

Finally, do you have realistic objectives in place? Deciding you want to increase your following 300% may sound great, but consider what purpose that serves if you’re less able to engage with that larger audience, or you’re attracting the wrong audience in the long run. It’s critical to have absolute clarity on what you want to achieve, why you want to achieve it, and the smaller steps it’ll take to get there.