Social Media Mistakes That Can Hurt Your Business

Beth Gramling Sanders
5 min readFeb 25, 2021

Why Social Media Mistakes Matter

Social media mistakes matter because your social media presence may be the first — or even the only — impression potential customers have of your business. Your social profiles should reflect who you are, what you do, and what you stand for.

Most social media mistakes are a result of laziness, inattention, or carelessness. Some can be attributed to insensitivity and/or tone deafness. Whether intentional or not, these failures can hurt your reputation and your business.

It’s not just the major social media mistakes that can tank a business online; sometimes it’s less obvious errors that hurt a business’ presence.

How to Prevent the Social Media Fail

1. Carefully Vet the Person to Whom You Give the Credentials

Too many businesses mistakenly assume that the youngest person on staff, sometimes an intern, is the best choice to do social media posting. After all, they are digital natives, and understand social media far better than their parents and grandparents. Right?

Not necessarily. Although the younger generation may understand the technical aspects, they don’t always have the wisdom, experience, or judgement to be the voice of the company.

Anyone who has login credentials for your social media accounts has the ability to speak for your business. Think about that. Would you allow your youngest and potentially least experienced staff member to be interviewed on television as your company spokesperson? I’m guessing not.

The keys to your social media profiles are the same. You’re choosing the person who will represent you on the internet. Where nothing really is ever deleted.

2. Set Standards for Language and Principles

Have social media policies in place, in writing. Your policies should cover the following:

Things We Just Don’t Say

If there are specific words that are not to be used, those need to be communicated clearly. Words considered profane or vulgar are an example. If you…