The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Content Creation

Last updated: 04-08-2020

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The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Content Creation

Whether it’s for your own brand, or you create social content for a variety of businesses, creating consistently great content is a challenge for even the most seasoned marketers.

Are you aware of your social media content sins?

Often, it’s easy to pick out the mistakes that other brands or agencies are making, but it’s a bit more difficult to see your own.

Below is an outline of some of the most abhorrent sins in the social media world to assist you in evaluating your online content.

Take a look at the list, and then at your content. Make fixes. Repeat.

Also known as extreme anger or rage, wrath can wreak havoc for your brand – both online and off – in the blink of an eye.

Wrath is one of the most self-destructive social media sins and is the leading cause of many of the feuds, flameouts, and rants that we encounter so often online – especially in social media.

Remember, one ridiculous public rant will cancel out decades of respectable business practices.

If something sets you off, sit on your hands or step away from the keyboard for a while.

Take a walk, listen to some music, or talk to a trusted advisor before you share anything in a public forum.

Often, after the heat of a rage-inducing moment passes, your initial passionate reaction will just seem silly, even to you.

While you may see a brief spotlight shining on your content, and even get some laughs for calling out the opposition or sharing negative content, rarely does social media raging result in long-term online success.

Forget the idea of “going viral.”

Do you really want to be remembered for losing your cool in a public forum?

Instead of engaging in a rage, step back and analyze the issue.

Do not post anything, anywhere until you’ve calmed down.

Bring in a trusted advisor if necessary.

Address any issues with professionalism and courtesy, if at all.

If the issue must be addressed, attempt to take the conversation offline and out of the eye of your audience.

Remember, even seemingly private online conversations are never private.

Emails get shared, messages get screenshotted and shared.

If you don’t say it, it can’t come back to bite you down the road.

We aren’t talking about taking pride in your work, we’re talking about the side of pride associated with arrogance.

Often considered the original sin, pride is considered excessive self-love that blinds the ability to acknowledge the good work of others.

This kind of pride can be detrimental in social media settings and in-person environments alike.

Elevating and inflating your worth above that of others not only frustrates your social media community, but also makes you a target for negativity and bad press.

Don’t forget, the fall from a high horse is a painful one with a rough landing.

By admitting that you’re not perfect, and highlighting the work or great content from other sources when you see them, you show your social communities that you’re not only looking out for your own success, but also for the greater good of the community as a whole.

That community can be geographically local, industry-specific, or even a group that has assembled due to common interests or hobbies.

Earning the trust of these communities is critical to your success, and if they think you’ve got an overblown ego, you will not earn that trust.

The ability to operate with humility will allow you to not only help others online, but elevate yourself or your brand as well.

Social media is all about community and engagement. A level playing field is key here.

Social media users like to see a human element behind the brands that they interact with.

Show them that side of you, and let them know that you’re not just in it for your own self-promotion.

Perhaps the most tragic sin on the list involves the wasting of one’s talent. This can be an individual, a product line, or even a brand as a whole.

In order to be successful in social media, brands must not allow complacency to stand in the way of excellence.

Just like coworkers in an office, your audience will quickly learn if you’re being lazy on social media and will stop looking to your brand as an industry information leader on social media.

No one wants to work with a lazy team.

Show your audience your value by putting your best foot forward in the social media space.

Go the extra mile at every opportunity.

Provide fans and followers with valuable information and respond to comments and inquiries genuinely and with honesty.

Avoid public embarrassment by verifying social media post content for accuracy and timeliness before sharing to your social profiles.

Credit original creators when you share content and take a moment to add unique commentary that adds value for your audience.

The time and effort you put into creating and sharing great content with integrity will show.

Greed is often noted as a cause for the downfall of even some of the most brilliant and logical minds.

Unfortunately, greed can be sneaky and can cause a host of problems.

Most notably, a loss of trust from one’s audience, which can result in a loss of what likely caused the greed in the first place – profit.

Often, when creating social media content, we focus on more. More followers, more sales, more engagement.

These tend to be good things, however, too much of a good thing can quickly become excessive.

If you grow your followers too quickly, your numbers can appear falsely inflated and end up resulting in reduced engagement.

If your sales increase too quickly, you may not be able to handle the volume.

Some luxury brands actually do better with a smaller following.

Those people are more likely to be actual customers, and less likely to complain about luxury brand pricing.

Ensuring that you have systems in place for multiple stages of growth will ensure that engagement and buzz stay positive.

Remember that members of your audience and even your competition are real people, and like to be treated as such. Don’t let your drive for success overshadow the value of your audience and their loyalty.

A very close partner to pride and lust, envy is rooted in an insatiable need to possess the traits or belongings of someone else.

Sure, your biggest competitor’s most recent social media campaign was phenomenal, and you wish that it had been yours.

How you react to that wish is what is key here.

A little bit of envy can help drive creativity and success.

Too much, however, and you’ll spend all of your time comparing yourself or your brand to others.

It’s impossible to excel if you’re always looking at someone else’s work instead of focusing on your own.

Your team will get frustrated, and eventually will give up due to feeling like they can never meet the unattainable goals set for them.

There’s a reason they put blinders on racehorses.

Focusing on your lane will allow you to excel without worrying about what’s going on somewhere else.

Whether it is a need for glowing professional recognition, winning a big contract, or having the best and newest car in the parking lot; don’t let envy get in the way of your ability to do a great job.

There is such a thing as too much of a good thing – this can come in the form of constant hedonism or posting to your social profiles round the clock.

We’ve all seen that person or brand who is constantly posting self-promotional content, over-filtered images, or tooting their own horn.

They spend so much time pumping out social media posts that their audience stops seeing the value.

Don’t let your passion for your business or success to take over every aspect of your life.

Overindulgence is not only distasteful to others, but it will also make clients question your “why” and will annoy your peers.

Work to achieve balance, and reward accordingly.

The wins are sweeter when you celebrate them.

If you’re constantly overindulging, the reward will stop having value.

We aren’t talking about wanting to get up close and personal with your audience, though that would also likely be frowned upon in most circles.

Much like greed, lust for power or profit is self-destructive and off-putting, both online and off.

Continually striving to be the best version of yourself that you can be is great.

That said, balancing that drive with self-control and focus back to your social media communities will allow you to keep your audiences’ perceptions of your brand positive.

While drive is good, be careful to not let it appear as though all you care about is image and power.

Balance your push for success by taking the time to give back.

Offer helpful advice in industry groups, volunteer in your community, and even take some time to smell the flowers.

Show your audience that it’s not all about winning, and you’ll create better relationships.

We’ve all been guilty of committing these social media content sins a time or two.

The key here is to work to achieve balance and keep your audience wanting more.

Working to be the best version of your self or your brand should be your ultimate goal.

This is what drives engagement, loyalty, and profit.

Which social content sins are you guilty of committing, and what steps are you taking to avoid them in the future?


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