Previously, we have posted an article about 9 Things You Should Never Do On Social Media. In an effort to give you updated content, we gathered the top three common social media mistakes that people make when writing for each platform and how you can avoid them.
It does not take an expert to miss these mistakes but the ones that we are going to list are the most overlooked ones. Here we go.
Not Checking The Spelling
When it comes to social media, the writing style is more casual compared to other channels. We’ve tackled in the previous articles how you can get away with using abbreviations and breaking a few traditional grammar rules. However, nothing is worse than having confusing and funny typos in your copy to interfere with the message you are trying to relay. The unfortunate thing on social media is that if these mistakes are overlooked, this mistake can be shared by thousands of people and you can’t have any way of taking them back.
The easiest fix here is to have proper proofreading. Here are three top tips for proofreading your social media copy:
- Check usernames and hashtags – these are where errors most likely occur because spellcheckers can’t check them. So before clicking that post button, click on them, check the link to whatever you’re expecting them to go, and give them a final once-over before hitting the publish button.
- Get a second opinion – if you use a scheduling tool to plan a lot of your posts ahead of time, set up a process whereby each post is checked and signed off by another member of your team. This can be a little time-consuming but it can save you a lot of stress in the long run by avoiding typos of any kind.
- Use Hemingway or Grammarly – for picking up good old-fashioned spelling mistakes, I recommend using either of these tools. They are both free and very easy to use. For Hemingway, you only have to open a tab on your browser and quickly copy and paste your posts in for a quick check. You can do the same for Grammarly or you can install the Grammarly Chrome Extension and give it access to your google docs or anywhere you’re writing and it will automatically check your spelling and grammar. I love the latter more and I use it for pretty much everything I write. But both are really great because they go beyond spelling as both apps also check your grammar more generally. And it gives you tips to make your writing clearer and more concise.
Another common social media mistake is cross-posting. This is when you share exactly the same post on different social media platforms – word for word. And it’s always tempting to do this to save time while at the same time keep all your accounts active. But this is a terrible idea. In the long run, it can potentially devalue your brand.
From our previous copywriting articles, you’d know that there are different elements like the audience, the caption length, and the vocabulary used in every platform. When you share the exact same post on all of your platforms, you might accidentally end up inviting your followers on Facebook to ‘retweet’ you, or you could lose half of your caption or tag a handle from one platform that does not exist on another. Moreover, cross-posting is just so obvious and your followers might assume that you don’t care, or worst, your post can even look spammy.
Always craft different variations of your posts for different platforms, and this does not need to be time-consuming. Be aware of where you are posting and clarify your message, audiences, brand voice, and call-to-action. Use the information found in our previous articles to write your Twitter posts – keeping them short and sweet. Then from this original copy, tweak your wordings that will give the same message for your other channels, taking into account the differences in captions length, hashtags, and more. In most cases, 90% of your post copy will remain the same, so you don’t really have to start from scratch.
They’re all over social media. I bet all of your followers are using them, and if you are too, then you’re cool! Emojis add color and fun to your posts. You smile at your customers in person, right? So why not smile at them online? For some product and services though, the usage of emojis are less appropriate. But if you’re writing them off for no good reason, you’re missing a trick.
Incorporating emojis can work as an extension of tweaking your language to match the more casual, informal language your audience is using. In the end, whether and how you use emojis comes down to your brand voice and consistency. As always, audience focus is key.
Now, you’ve learned practical, actionable steps. Put these things into work straight away to improve your copy and make it more concise, persuasive, attention-grabbing, and engaging.