Four Social Media Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

By Jim Augustus Armstrong

Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, X (formerly Twitter), Pinterest, TikTok and the list goes on. With so many social media sites, how do you know which are the best channels for your business?

If struggling to choose, it’s best to focus on just one to begin. And it should be the platform where you’ll find most of your customers.

According to a report by U.S. think tank Pew Research Centre, 68 per cent of people are on Facebook. That dwarfs the numbers on Instagram (28 per cent), Pinterest (26 per cent), LinkedIn (25 per cent) and X (21 per cent). So, when it comes to which social media site provides the greatest access to customers, Facebook is still the most effective.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t utilize other platforms, but only if you have the time and resources to design and run effective marketing campaigns on multiple social media sites. Otherwise, you may dilute the effectiveness of your marketing efforts as you struggle to keep up with managing the different platforms.

Specifically focusing your social media efforts on Facebook allows you to maximize your impact without stretching your budget. This approach enables you to deeply engage with your target audience and build a stronger brand presence. When done correctly, it can produce a steady stream of quality customers for your business.

If you’ve already attempted Facebook marketing and gotten mediocre to lousy results, this is likely because you’ve made some common mistakes that can harm your efforts.

Mistake #1: Trying to Sell Directly on Facebook
The only products that tend to sell well on Facebook are low-end, impulse items like t-shirts, inexpensive electronic gadgets, costume jewelry and so on. In other words, things you can buy and sell on Facebook Marketplace.

When it comes to selling, think of Facebook as a large mall. You don’t usually see big-ticket items like flooring sold in malls where people often go to browse and make impulse purchases. Therefore, if you want to generate sales, your marketing should be designed to get prospects off Facebook and into your store.

Mistake #2: Incorrect Page Setup
Not setting up your business page properly can hurt your visibility online, resulting in missed opportunities.

Common mistakes include:

  • Incomplete or inconsistent information and branding with other online listings.
  • No call to action.
  • No link to your store’s website.
  • Weak or non-existent unique selling proposition.
  • Setting up your business as a personal profile. (This is against Facebook’s guidelines. Your profile may be shut down along with any pages associated with it.)

Mistake #3: Buying ‘Likes’
Thousands of likes on your Facebook page makes you look more relevant. If the likes are from real followers — and you market to them properly — they can convert into significant revenue for your business.

It can be tempting to buy likes but don’t do it. If you have 10,000 likes from fake followers who are not interested in your products, then your posts and page will have low engagement. That hurts the visibility of your content and your real followers won’t see it. Fake followers are also not going to buy your product.

Mistake #4: No Marketing Plan
Many flooring retailers simply post photos of products or special offers periodically, with no thought-out plan for systematically getting business from Facebook. Your posts must fit into an overall strategy for generating customers. To make that happen, each post should attract followers, create engagement and entice people to go to your store.

Engagement on Facebook equals likes, shares or comments. If your posts aren’t getting much engagement, then Facebook’s algorithms will penalize your posts. That makes them visible to fewer people, so this step is essential. Text-heavy posts tend to get the least engagement. Photos of products or display racks don’t do well either. Photos of happy customers standing on their new floors with a caption can garner good engagement, especially if you tag your customer. In doing so, the post will show up in their timeline where the post is now seen by their friends. This increases opportunities for further engagement and even attracting new followers to your page.

An effective way to gain new followers is with a contest. Pick the right prize and format and your contest can get high engagement. Make sure the prize is related to what you sell like an area rug or floor cleaning kit. If you give away iPads or televisions, you’ll attract followers but they may not be interested in flooring. Running contests on a regular basis as part of your overall Facebook marketing strategy ensures you have an ever-growing, consistently engaged follower base.

Hosting events like a community gathering, parking lot barbecue, holiday party or workshop are a great way to get consumers into your store. Announcing them on Facebook can increase that foot traffic, as you extend your reach.

Jim Augustus Armstrong is founder and president of Flooring Success Systems, a company that provides floor dealers with marketing services and coaching to help them attract quality customers, close more sales, get higher margins and work the hours they choose. To obtain a free copy of Jim’s flooring industry report, Stop Leaving Millions on the Table, visit Jim can be reached at 530-790-6720 or [email protected].

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