Whether or not you are new to business, you should know all too well that social media has become a cornerstone of any effective marketing strategy. By now, you should have business accounts with at least the top social media sites, including Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. However, also by now you might have realized that simply creating these accounts doesn’t necessarily lead to more conversions.

Social Media

There are dozens of ways to take advantage of social media in order to benefit your sales pipeline, but there are also dozens of mistakes you can make that prevents social media from becoming an effective way to sell your brand and business.

In all likelihood, your social media isn’t selling if:

You Focus on Selling

The point of maintaining a variety of social media accounts is to attract new prospects and increase your conversion rate — but that doesn’t mean your social pages should be suffuse with hard sales tactics. Posting information about your products and services is unlikely to garner any response, even from viewers who are interested in what your business has to offer.

Instead, you should be building trust in your followers with valuable content and personal interactions. By being genuine on social media, you will see your conversion rate spike.

You Are Too Automated

There are a number of social media tools and applications to help organize your accounts and content, but you will likely run into trouble with too much of a good thing. Eventually, followers start to recognize the telltale signs of automation — the regular post intervals, the standard format, the featureless tone — and lose interest in your company’s pages.

By posting to social media only through schedulers like HootSuite, you lose the opportunity to engage with prospects. While it is smart to utilize helpful tools, you should avoid relying on them too much, or you risk alienating your following.

You Are Trying to Trick Customers

Clickbait — the online version of yellow journalism — has nearly taken over social media in recent years, with sensational headlines (or images or videos) that attract viewers only to provide low-quality, inaccurate and otherwise disappointing content. Clickbait is almost always an advertising ploy that relies entirely on trickery to garner profits.

If you want your social media followers to convert, you cannot rely on clickbait or any other forms of deception to attract views. Instead, you must cooperate with your prospects and build relationships to earn their hard-earned cash.

You Use Just One Type of Content

Today, nearly every social site allows users to post a variety of content — but you might still be stuck using just one.

It is worthwhile to curate a variety of media to keep your audience interested, but you should also consider the barrage of advertising messages your followers see every day and find ways to distinguish yourself. You might want to look into hiring a video production team like LA Video in Washington D.C. or a local professional photographer to ensure your media is high quality.

You Aren’t Active

A dead social media account is worse than a non-existent one. Prospects who come across inactive pages will assume your business is defunct.

It isn’t hard to establish a routine for social media activity; you can even pull together employees from different departments to generate enough content for a few months of posts. By divvying up the labor, social media maintenance becomes easier and potentially more interesting.

You Are Too Active

Not long ago, name recognition was the top advertising strategy. Today, every social media user has a feed full of messages and media, and it isn’t particularly positive for a business’s name to appear too frequently. By oversupplying posts, your social media pages will start to look like spam.

You should spend at least as much time listening to your followers as you do posting; social media is about conversations and relationships, not cold selling.

You Expect Immediate Results

I hate to break it to you, but it’s likely that no one saw your first social media post. It’s even possible that no one saw your second and third posts. Due to oversaturation, it takes a while for business social accounts to garner any meaningful attention, but with persistent positive thinking and regular action, it is likely you’ll see more conversions in a matter of weeks.

While there may be a handful of success stories detailing the supreme power of social selling, the truth is that good social media will never reverse the damage of bad customer service or imperfect products. Fortunately, with strong sales and marketing teams and tactics, it is possible to develop social sites that benefit your bottom line.