Our current 5 social media pet peeves
We're aware this could be a controversial one. And as a disclaimer we're saying it here and now - this isn't meant to shame anyone, or throw out any shade (we might have been watching too much RuPaul's Drag Race!). We can see why a lot of people do them - it's easy and time saving. But there's other more professional and higher standard alternatives that don't take a lot of extra effort. We want to build people up, help them learn and improve their own online presence, we're all in the big world of business together, right!?
In no particular order, here goes...
1) Sharing from Instagram onto other platforms
Yes the ability is there and it is super handy but it has it's downsides. Cross sharing posts from Instagram to Facebook and Twitter is proven to attract lower engagement rates. Sharing onto Twitter creates an ugly looking link, which very few people actually use to click through to the image within the Instagram app. Sharing onto Facebook however, yes the image appears (1 more point than Twitter), but unless you've edited the caption before sharing, it'll drag through any hashtags you've used. Not only does like not look the best but hashtags really don't have the same function or usage on Facebook, so they're pretty redundant.
If you want to use the same image across the holy trinity of Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, then your best bet is to either post natively and individually into each platform. Or, if you're doing it regularly, invest in a social media management platform (like Hootsuite or Buffer) and you'll save a TONNE of time. There's so many management platforms and apps out there now. Take the time to investigate one that works for you and your budget.
2) Instagram stories as Instagram posts
You've done a post on your Instagram stories and you want to communicate the same thing on your main feed - so you save the story graphic you've created, and load onto your main feed. The below examples are all taken from main feeds.
The issue isn't the replication of imagery. It's what it says about you and your brand. Yes, doing this may save you some time, but think what message these efforts might be saying to your customers. Do you think it gives an impression of a professional business that pays attention to their branding and aesthetic? If they care so little about spending a bit of extra time on an Instagram post - what other corners might be cut during the consumer journey?
You should value and treasure your Instagram feed in the same way you would if you had a shop display window. It displays your products, portrays your story and gives an instant snapshot into your business, which people will make a value judgement on. A little effort can go a long way.
There's loads of really quick and easy image creation apps to make some beautiful branded graphics with. Our favourite is Canva which comes with a tonne of really easy to personalise templates to show off your brand in the best possible way.
3) Screenshot reviews as Instagram posts
This is kind of in a similar realm to my last point. We see it happen so so often. You've received an incredible review, and you want to show it off. AMAZING! But is screen-shotting it from Facebook or Google, the best way to display this on Instagram? The below examples are from main Instagram feeds - and it even shows off an example of a review posted in a story and THEN used as a main feed image, no no no!
If someone has taken the time and effort to leave you a review so good you want to shout about it - treat it with a bit of love and respect. Design a lovely on-brand graphic. If it's a long review, pick out the best one line in it that will grab folks' attention the best, then copy the full thing into your caption. Give it the attention it deserves. If people want to check the validity of the reviews, they can do it themselves. Be loud and proud about the feedback you've earned, don't treat it like an after-thought.
4) Instagram multi-image grids
Done right, these can create STUNNING effects on an Instagram feed, that really make you stand out. Seriously, check out Aldi UK's feed for unlikely Instafeed goals!
But, they require commitment. Once you start them, you have to be mindful of them with everything you post afterwards. If you don't keep this in mind, the image becomes disjointed and can have a really adverse effect on an Instagram feed. Having a solid content strategy and design plan can help prevent this.
5) So what!?
It's undeniable that video plays a HUGE role in marketing today. Whether it's short form on Instagram, live feeds on Facebook, YouTube or the new IGTV, it's everywhere! There's also the huge rise in audio content distribution in the form of podcasts. And more people than ever are taking to twitter to share their opinions with the world. One of our biggest pet peeves is a current lazy trend at the start of sentences over ALL mediums. Everything seems to start with 'So....'. It might not seem infuriating on it's own. But try sitting through an influencer's Instagram story, with every 10 second video starting with it. Now we've said it, you'll see it everywhere. SOZ!
We can do better than this folks! There's so many words out there. Get creative! Use them! Anything other than 'So'. Please!