How to NOT Sound Like an Infomercial

Social Media Mistake #3 ~ How to NOT Sound Like an Infomercial

“But WAIT… there’s MORE!” Unless you’ve been living under a rock — or without a television — you’ve probably seen more than your fair share of late-night infomercials. They used to annoy me until I began studying marketing & consumer behavior in college.

This is probably the biggest mistakes, and it takes many forms – but the bottom line is if you’re treating social media like just another sales platform, you’re doing it wrong. Social media isn’t meant to be used as just another means of a way to advertise your stuff. It’s about building relationships and getting to know people on a more personal level. It’s about conversation and engaging with others. A good question to ask is: am I speaking to my connections or with them? You want to be talking with them, not at them.

So exactly where does promotion come in then? More than likely, you want to promote your speaking services and/or products. That’s great, and people want to hear about them… but only in small doses and only when it makes sense for them. People will block you or stop following you if your feed is nothing but a sales pitch over and over and over. Think about how you would feel if, for example, your TV got stuck on a commercial and it just kept playing. You wouldn’t be too thrilled and would probably click the TV off. That’s exactly how your followers will feel if all you do is promote over and over.

Don’t just post status updates linking to your stuff. Be sure to share other helpful relevant information too. If you found a really cool person on Twitter, let your followers know. If you found a great business page on Facebook, let your fans know. Just finished reading an excellent informative article – share it. You want your content to be as diversified as possible without getting off topic. And, by sharing other people’s stuff you’ll probably find that they’re more than likely to share your stuff, too.

To sum it up, you can become a person that people want to do business with via social media channels without promoting over and over and over.

Here are some suggestions on how to make people want to do business with you:

  • Promote others not just your stuff.
  • Have conversations – start conversations (ask questions).
  • Be silly (have fun).
  • Be authentic.
  • Share valuable information.
  • Don’t automate your messages – be there ‘in person’ to interact with others.
  • Be human – this goes along with not automating your messages. People want to talk to YOU not a ‘robot’ (aka pre-scheduled status update).

The bottom line when it comes to social media is that people are looking to socialize and build relationships with others that share common interests with them. They don’t want to be marketed to — but, you can usually get away with it if it’s done in very small doses.

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