are you making enough mistakes on

social media?

Quick question: when you think of Babe Ruth, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Is it baseball? Is it the Yankees? Is it Dan Goodman (in a highly underrated performance)? One of the first connections you’re probably making is home runs, right? And for good reason. He hit an outstanding 714 homers in his career, a record only surpassed by two other players.

So, the guy hit a lot of homeruns. Here’s the important question: Do you ever think about him in terms of his strike outs? If not, why? In addition to having a hugely impressive number of homeruns, he was also known as the King of Strikeouts with an astonishing 1,330 strikeouts to his name.


Shockingly, this blog is not going to be about Babe Ruth or baseball. It’s about hitting home runs and striking out. Figuratively, hitting home runs and striking out. See, that’s the thing about achieving greatness: it never comes without the failure. The ups and the downs. The wins and the losses. We apply this to many facets of our lives. We know that in order to progress with our fitness, we’re going to fail. We understand that in order to meet our soul mate, we have to go on a lot of bad dates (saying that for a friend). Heck, we even know that in order to find new clients, there will be a lot of rejection involved. So why would we anticipate anything else when it comes to social media marketing? If we are going to succeed at social, we need to be prepared to fail first.


Now, before you go out there and post something that’s inappropriate, offensive, or just plain bad, let me preface this by saying that the definition of failure is important. See, I’m not just referring to typos or the occasional face-palm-inducing gaffe that a brand might make during its social marketing journey.

Bad example of a social media mistake
Exhibit A.
Source: dailymail.co.uk

While those can happen to the best of us, it’s not something I would ever intentionally advocate for my clients and would also never recommend to you. I’m talking about much more subtle (and useful) mistakes we can make on our social.

They’re important because: 

  • They indicate that we’re making an effort to connect with our target market via social media
  • If we know the post was wrong, it means we’re measuring the correct aspects of our analytics
  • Much like in scientific experiments, failure is still a result that gives us important clues

Are you with me so far? First point I want to make clear: *(some) mistakes that we can make on social media marketing are actually incredibly valuable. If we use the strike outs correctly, they could ultimately lead to a home run. So, what are these mistakes?




1. You’re not posting the right content

I’ve previously discussed the most common mistakes I see on social media, and one of those mistakes is not posting content that’s relevant to your target market. If your posts are always too sales-y, if you have no idea what your target market wants to see or if you’re not posting in a consistent manner with your branding and voice, STOP IT. But the truth is that we’re never going to live in a world where 100% of your content resonates with your target market perfectly, and that’s A-okay. It’s incredibly likely that you’re literally millimeters away from making that connection.

The key is to monitor the performance and make tiny adjustments as you go. In order to do this, you have to start posting something. After all, it’s a lot easier to steer a car that’s already moving. So be prepared to post and test until you get the perfect content down pat. And even then, you’re going to want to make small shifts to keep it fresh like the prince of Bel Air, so there will inevitably be some posts along the way that just don’t click.


2. You’re not leveraging the right call to action.

Pop quiz, hot shot: How many of your posts should include some sort of call to action (CTA)? I really hope you said 100%, because every single post you make, every breath you take, should be telling your target market the next steps you anticipate from them. I don’t mean that every post should be sales-related. In fact, I think the vast majority of your posts should NOT be trying to sell something. You lose a ton of credibility REAL fast that way. But asking your readers to like/share/comment? Absolutely. Giving them next steps to find value from your brand? All the YESSES! Even just a little piece of advice they can apply to their actual real life? You bet.

Not including a call to action is a mistake you shouldn’t make. Using the wrong CTA? That’s a horse of a completely different color. Finding the right air/fuel mixture for emotions, content, assets and CTAs is the name of the game. It’s discovering exactly which combinations lead to the best results. The only way we can really do this is to test, test, test and refine.


3. Your ad results just aren’t there

Social media advertising has never been more important to brands that want to rise above the clutter and noise to actually connect with their target markets. That’s real. But if you’re just boosting a post here or there, you’re running content that doesn’t tie back to the emotions of your target market or you’re trying to close a sale with someone who has literally never heard of you before, that’s unfortunate. Quit that shit. If you are running several ads testing headlines and copy, switching out images or playing with different audiences, you just keep on keeping on. Some of those activities will get you nowhere but it just takes one winning combo to take you EVERYWHERE and you won’t know what that is until you try. So, make the mistake of the wrong headline or description, use the wrong picture or address the wrong emotion. Just accept it as soon as you realize it’s wrong and adjust it from there. Monitor and change. Tweak it until it’s perfect.


Bottom line:

if you constantly wait until everything is perfect in your social media, you’re never going to make it. Failure should be a part of your strategy, as long as you’re using it to learn, grow and evolve. Mistakes can be incredibly powerful tools if they’re part of an overarching strategy. Let me know in the comments about a mistake you made that helped you grow and evolve. Can’t wait to hear from you!


Choosing the Right Social Media Platform for Your Clients

Choosing the Right Social Media Platform for Your Clients

Choosing the Right Social Media Platform for Your ClientsIf I learned anything about real estate (and I can assure you I’ve learned very, very little), it’s the saying “location, location, location.” Guess what? That’s also true when it comes to social media platforms...

6 Social Post Ideas to Swipe for Your Clients

6 Social Post Ideas to Swipe for Your Clients

6 Social Post Ideas to Swipe for Your ClientsTime to get your mask, striped shirt, and a canvas bag with dollar signs on it, we’re going swiping! Over the past 12+ years of marketing, I’ve noticed some trends in posts that typically work well, regardless of industry,...

5 Things Every B2B Social Media Post Should Do

5 Things Every B2B Social Media Post Should Do

5 Things Every B2B Social Media Post Should AccomplishWe’re all working around here, so why should your B2B social media be any different? One of the most important conversations I have with clients is a realistic expectation about the role B2B social media plays in...

B2B Social as a Support Tool

B2B Social as a Support Tool

B2B Social as a Support ToolI think Bill Withers said (sang) it best. We really do all need somebody to leeeeeeeaaaan on. Friends. Family. Neighbors. Business-to-business multi-channel marketing strategies. See, one of the things I’ve learned as a B2B social media-er...