In an effort to get more done in less time, many businesses and professionals utilize automation tools. These are great for inter-office communication, time logging, billing, post-review order processing, and many other tedious chores. When it comes to social media, however, the lack of human interaction can be a real killer – not just in terms of your follower numbers, but for your business itself.
There is no “perfect” automation tool for Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media service. If you want to pay for a service that does everything for you exactly how you want, either do it yourself or hire a human and not a cloud service. Why? Because even the top-rated services can blast out embarrassing posts.
Here are just some of the most common snafus committed by improperly configured and/or less-than-ideal automation services. (To date, I’ve yet to come across an “ideal” service, by the way.)
- Duplicate posts. Tools that auto-post site urls can conflict with each other, especially if you’ve configured more than one tool. For example, I wound up unfollowing an otherwise informative company because they used an auto Twitter and Facebook posting tool, then configured Facebook to auto-post to Twitter, and so on. The result was three identical tweets each and every time they had something to say. It was a nightmare and, despite my directing several posts to them, my complaints were ignored. I finally assumed they used automation for all of it, sans any human interaction.
- Too much personal on a business account. If you’re posting everything you say on Facebook to Twitter, you may be sharing more personal information than you should be, especially if you cater to professionals or store customers. In short, many things you say on your personal accounts – especially to “friends” on non-public platforms – shouldn’t be seen by the masses.
- ReTweets of foul posts. Auto retweeting of others’ posts based solely on keywords or hashtags can come back to bite you. All it takes is one original tweet that’s riddled with foul language or racist remarks. So, steer clear of these types of auto postings – you’re better off analyzing posts to determine which ones merit reposting.
- Competitor promotion instead of simply “sharing”. I’ve seen some corporate brands retweet posts that clearly push users to the company’s own competitors. It’s one thing to share a vision, it’s another to tell your customers to go elsewhere.
- Ignoring user engagement. When you automate it’s easy to kick back and let your accounts run themselves. Be careful, because you may be missing out on engaging opportunities which could bring you more business.
Have you had an auto-posting nightmare? Experienced some other company’s or professional’s downfall? Share…