The Top 3 Reasons You Suck At Social Marketing

This weekend I’ve been taking it easy and as it’s Sunday now, I’m gearing up for the week ahead. While preparing for the week, of course, I dabble in the social networks and check out all the happenings from members of this community and *gasp* I’ve got to rant about a few things…Here they are, the top 3 reasons why people are going about social marketing in all the wrong ways;

1. Trying To Get In Bed With Me, Without Wining & Dining Me First – you have to pardon the ‘interesting’ example but check this out:

Message Received – 12:41pm

My name is Marketer X and I noticed that we
have several mutual friends in common and
I noticed you are involved in Internet Marketing.
How is that going for you?
My team and I have a great system to share with you,
if you are open.
Just reply to this message and say yes
and I will send you the info ok?
I look forward to hearing from you,
Have a great day,
Marketer X

Yup, in some far off land, some internet ‘expert’ is teaching people to actually send these kind of messages to random folks on Facebook. Let’s just say if you don’t see what is VERY wrong with this, ask a close personal friend what they think…

2. Using The Term Social, Because Everyone Else Is – Oh man oh man, this really gets to me. Ever notice how everything and everyone says they are ‘social’ these days? Here’s the kicker, being social is not a once a month thing. It’s not a second Tuesday of the month when the moon and stars align, it’s everyday…Constant. Unless the people you deal with hibernate until that magical day of the month that YOU decide to be social, you aren’t getting it. Sorry experts, you are hurting the ‘buzzword’ with your use of it.

3. You Forget About The Soul of Social – Social marketing is very popular and for good reason. It’s one of, if not the most, powerful forms of advertising and when done right can be huge for your business. But here’s the thing..It’s natural. It’s people. It’s not meant to be a ‘strategy’ it’s meant to be YOU. So if you don’t generally like people or don’t want to be a part of the community, this isn’t for you. Maybe try buying some leads, or whatever worked in 1985. Social is people and when you forget it, you miss out huge!

There you have it…My top 3 reasons why people are failing at this whole social thing. I’d love to hear your thoughts and maybe I missed a huge nugget or two, let me know in the comments below. Thank you very much for reading and have a great day!

Jon Olson

I'm Jon Olson, I've been publishing Hit Exchange News since 2003 and been involved in the traffic exchange industry since...Well, the beginning :) I'd love to network with you as you browse the pulse of the traffic exchange industry! I am also a HUGE fan of reading your comments. I will respond to every single one! Poke around and enjoy the 'News! And thanks for hanging out...

51 thoughts to “The Top 3 Reasons You Suck At Social Marketing”

  1. Good post Jon, I’m glad you said it! Being “out there” well, meaning getting your face out there, not being “crazy out there”… Okay, I’m off topic. Being involved in the social media outlets is tough to do on a consistent basis. Doing it “right” is even harder… letting people know what I’m about as a person, is far more important than what I’m selling.

    Okay, and yeah, maybe I’m a bit “crazy out there” – but my goal in life is to be eccentric. I’ll start showing more of that!

    1. LOL Nice, I think we all need to be a little ‘crazy out there’ it helps the branding LOL

      But nah, thats the thing. Anyone can do this and the real key is to do it everyday. It’s free, there is really no excuse…Unless the person genuinely doesn’t like other people LOL

  2. sorry Jon, next time I wont use the name Marketer x, LOL

    it irritates me too when people are screaming they care about their people and say they are social, when they are unwilling to hang out and talk with people and just get to know them…

    By the same token I have a lot of loyalty to you and timtech because you make yourself(ves) available all the time. You do telive M-F, there is always someone in the skype room, and several times we have just jung out and talked about music and books and stuff… And its not like it was just me… I think lots of people may be sucking at social, but you seem to have a good handle on it… KuDOS

    Mike Allen

    1. Thanks man, much appreciated. But you hit it right there too…M-F, heck I’d go on Saturday and Sunday too…I might ever fire it up in a few minutes LOL Because I LOVE it and I love being with the folks in this business. Daily.

  3. Hi Jon,

    Love the subject line grin. But so many times I have seen this sort of thing in the TE chats and it really grates.
    Another thing that seems to be coming more often is people coming into the chat and saying Hi or hello or similar greetings, and then they completely disappear and say nothing more.
    If that is their idea of being social then in my view they have lost the plot.
    Good post as usual Jon.


    1. Thanks Les – Yeah we have seen the drive by greetings and ‘semi-spam’ methods a few folks have been using. Sad because the real way to get big results is to approach people in chat…Like people. Not as potential downline.

  4. And can I add another one…. People that use chat only to get signups come on people….. don’t jump on all the new people and side pm them all of your programs….. That scares sooooo many off and they will only lurk in chat or not come back at all.

    And for heavens sakes please do not give out answers unless u know they are right….. If you have only been here a few chances are someone else would have a better answer than you…..

    OK I have a few more but will stop now….. roflol


  5. Love the title of the post… πŸ™‚

    I think I got that same letter this week – a couple of times!

    Sometimes I pop in to say hi and I can’t stay long but I do try to talk to people.


  6. WoooHoooo A Jon rant. You gotta love that!

    I average about 2 comments a day that start “Great Blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? ….” It’s mostly one guy, I have to give him credit for persistence:) Jeeze.

    I agree absolutely. Social is only hard if you are anti-social.

  7. Hi Jon,

    Social was my buildup long before the term “social” became popular, I was in a community/network for many years and just being myself and writing my opinions, poems, arguments, everything, brought in a large audience for me before I had any main opportunities to promote, and then when I did, leads and signups poured in. Chatting, socializing, being out there, being a human being, even before having anything to promote or having nothing to promote, will accumulate an audience, and then when we DO have something to show people, they will be much more likely to seriously look at it, just because they are acquainted with us consistently.

    1. Yup, exactly. We focus on being ‘human’ first, everything else will fall into place. Even when you have nothing to sell, you are still ‘selling’ yourself and making a solid personal brand.

  8. Good post as usual Jon.
    I have to confess that Facebook and Twitter leave me absolutely cold, primarily because I don’t want to engage with people who follow the practices you’ve outlined – and most do.

    Fact is I do do social but in some very targeted forums and Skype rooms where people are engaged and professional in their dealings.

    Yes you can stand out from the crowd by adopting your model and being totally committed to social.

    But… you have to be a) committed and b) enjoy it.

    I personally have found that buying traffic, building a subscriber list and then engaging with those people via email, and blog posts works more efficiently for me – but that’s what works for me and my personality.

    As you’ve said before, you can’t teach people to be social.

    They either get it or they don’t.

    They either want to do it or they don’t.

    Personally I haven’t logged in to FB for two weeks and my business hasn’t suffered at all.

    Ditto Linked In.

    In a perfect world – (if I could afford an assistant to do a lot of the tedious stuff I do everyday) I would spend more time being social with people that I WANT to engage with…

    In essence I’m agreeing whole heartedly with you but you have to fine the level of social interaction that you’re comfortable with- Social isn’t just FB, Twitter and TE chat rooms. There’s a whole world out there find what actually engages you and be social there.

    1. Thanks Mark – completely agree. I think people thrive in the methods that work best for them. What kills me though is the ‘saying I’m social and care about people’ but then never practice what they preach. If you are going to call yourself a social program and then just throw up FB and Twitter buttons, doesn’t cut it. Like you said, it’s a daily investment, a constant.

  9. Hi Jon,
    Some idiot marketer tried the same thing with me on Skype last week.
    We have never even said as much as “hi” and he was pitching me some crap or other that I simply had to check out.
    All I had to do was click on his link and I would get all the money I ever dreamed of while all the birds with broken wings would be healed, or some such nonsense.

    Then right at the end came an offer: “If you don’t want to receive these offers from me then let me know and I will remove you from the list.”

    I had a better idea and kicked him off my Skype list instead.

    You are spot on when you say that social is not a tool or a marketing gimmick.

    Social is what you, Sergio and I did on Spreecast on Friday. Heck it is what you do on Spreecast every day of the week.

    Why people fail to grasp that is beyond me. Then again why people do most of the stuff they do online is beyond me.


    1. Bingo! Awesome points sir. That’s exactly it, it’s a daily thing. It’s not some kind of secret, or 47 dollar ebook…and that’s why the ‘gurus’ hate it…Because it can’t be bought. It has to be earned.

  10. Hi Jon! It is sad to say, but I will say it anyway. IMHO, I believe that you and I will continue to receive those kinds of messages unless and until people stop trying to make a fast buck online and, instead, learn how to build a real business online! Best Wishes!

    1. Yup, unfortunately I think you are right. Sad state of affairs but alas, explains why only a tiny percentage of people actually make money online.

    2. I feel sorry for all those people that got taken into those junk. Most will quit and start to spread the word that internet business is a scam. And us the serious business people on the internet will get slash because of that. Even if we don’t have anything to do with those. πŸ™

  11. Hi Jon,

    I had to chuckle a few times…

    I got hit up on Fb also this past week, and I can only say I had very unpleasant thoughts afterwards.

    Lately, my pet peeve has been what Brenda & Les have already said…trying to find a way to not let it drive me crazy.

    Being social takes time and consistent effort at least for me, online and offline. I just keep pushing myself to explore what works best for me.

    One thing I do know, giving lip service to being social is such a waste for the person that is doing it and the people subjected to it.

    Thank again Jon for another good post!


    1. Absolutely, thanks very much Myra for your comments. And I completely agree…It feels ‘odd’ when you get approached like that on Facebook.

  12. Jon I could feel the way this post was headed before I finished it. I’d like to think that was because I know you pretty well. Yep, Jon the new social wave is here to stay and I’ve been trying to learn about it as much as possible. I’ve been trying to increase the depth of my relationships with the community as we speak.

    Keep on keeping on
    Peace out

  13. Informative post, Jon. I especially liked the part about BEING yourself, instead marketing yourself. Humanizing yourself.

    Would love to hear more about filtering your posts on Google+ & Facebook for certain audiences. Just wondering if anyone else does that. As a newbie, I’m afraid of alienating my friends by bombarding them with lots of marketing posts so I have been keeping my friends from seeing those posts, but I have not kept other IMers from seeing my personal posts. Thoughts? Opinion?

    Thank you!

    1. Thanks Maria, appreciate your comments! Yeah that’s the trick…I ‘unsubscribe’ from the people’s updates that constantly send ‘offers’ to me. That works very well for managing my Facebook account.

  14. Jon,
    I agree on the problem.

    I think the root cause may run deeper than poor marketing tactics though.

    I have no social proof to back this up and yet I do have a theory. I suspect that many people have forgotten what social relationships are. In a world where people will sit in their offices and call into a meeting instead of going to the conference room down the hall so that they can multi-task without being bothered by others, is it any wonder?

    Your first point is demonstrated every day with even purely social interactions. Whether business or social, you get a friend request and then have to put up with belligerence on why you are not answering them fast enough until you can get to the delete button! Or the clueless that go from friend request, to Hi!, to this post within the blink of an eye.

    Hello Darling,
    I have been having thoughts and thoughts about you and never get tired cos you are everywhere within me.. you have made my world so happy and focused with you just to be a good husband in future and you as my wife.
    Sweetheart, come to my hands! Please!! I beg with all I have and as I have said, promise you a lifetime of happiness and love. Come dance on the moon with me. You are all there is, I neither need nor want anything else at all. You are my heaven on earth and I need to live there, if you go … I need to as well, I need to be with one of angel. YOU!
    I am empty; fill me with passion for life once again … please.
    Love always,

    It’s an interesting social climate when people need lessons in how to be social.


  15. Excellent post Jon
    The soul of social really resonates. with good communication skills also comes a smattering of humilty, a large splash of Honesty and some great dollops of integrity.
    I have found that if people treat others how they would have others treat them then great ground is made.
    I used to be a stage manager, working in the background, behind the scenes getting a lot done and knowing when to apply solid conditions to achieve success. what I learnt most though was that to earn respect and trust you had to be yourself and work on developing a sense of belonging before you were seen as being a true part of the workings.
    I have just recently got rid of number of pitchers that have no idea that I might want to know who they are before I am going to trust and respect.
    I heard a video splash the other day that straight away states ” I want to thank you for putting your trust in me” Say What, who are you, and what a line to start a pitch, as if ????


    1. Awesome story sir, thanks for sharing. Yup, imagine a world where we ‘thank ‘ people instead of pitching them everyday. Crazy thoughts I know…

  16. Thank you once again, and for Brenda’s and everyone’s comments and thoughts here…..

    Lucky for some to have a genuine like for getting to know others… I hope I could never forget all of my experiences involving travel, teaching, training, and real problem solving…before I entered into the IM realm.

    Mostly, what I can say is this, even if I enjoy conversation…create the space for the other person to open up and share with you is really fantastic and when the ‘magic’ can occur for similar experiences or interests……..


    1. Oh it’s awesome. When you connect with folks on that kind of level it’s no longer about ‘making money off people’ it’s about building relationships with folks. It’s so healthy and just feels right.

  17. What if?

    I haven’t done it yet, but I was thinking about doing it…

    What if? We would try to get those people back into the real road to success? What I mean, instead of flushing them, why not do our best to start a exchange of idea and find out what they’re looking for on the internet. Why they’re promoting some junk? Most of those people are like us and they just need to get back on the right track. Maybe they need help!

    It was just a little What if. πŸ™‚

    I would like to find a way to reverse this. πŸ™‚

    And this will be my blog post subject today. πŸ™‚


    1. Some real good questions sir.

      And that’s very important to remember…Everyone who might be a success now, started at day one…Just like you, just like me, just like everyone in this crazy business.

  18. Social works if you stop describing it as a marketing tool and let it be what it is…social interaction not business interaction. People get bogged down with the naming of things and forget the essence. For example…It is not about the branding! (Gasps)
    Let me explain…everyone tells me it’s about branding, about my getting people to know my brand and what is my brand I ask…. why you is the reply!
    Exactly! I am not a brand if I was I would have a logo not my pic.
    I know that in this world this is the same thing bit that’s where the confusion lies. Stop trying to sell a brand be you.
    Act like a person…if people like you they will work with you not because you’re a brand but because you are a person.
    Don’t get me a wrong being a brand is necessary in some situations but NOT in chat or places of social interaction.
    People are going to work with you because you are friendly and approachable so be exactly that.
    Stop trying to sell yourself!

    1. Brilliant points man, thank you very much for sharing that!

      And some good stuff for me to think about, I plan on bringing some of this up in TE Live today!

  19. It normally takes me a while to say “I HATE” because that’s such a strong word now but I absolutely can’t stand pitching marketers anymore.

    I kind of let it pass in the beginning because I was learning and was excited about the whole thing.

    But now I have a zero tolerance about it, too bad some people still don’t get it and still are doing the “foot on the door” techniques.

    Just three days ago, some dude sent me an “incredible offer” to join venture on his upcoming book through my contact form (holy shit a book! I’m so lucky) and what really made my blood boil is that even though we are on a few common circles, we’re not even friends and have never even talked to each other.

    If I was THAT interested in getting someone in specific to promote for me, I would at least try to mention their name on my pitching e-mail, I wouldn’t say “hey there” wtf is up with that?

    I would also follow them on twitter, make a few comments on his/her blog, try to become friends on facebook, you know, GET TO KNOW THEM FIRST and know I exist at the very least.

    Sometimes I believe these people don’t even know what common sense looks like.


    PS. Needless to say (and still trying to turn a negative moment into a positive one) I replied to this person’s email and said a few things about how I watched a video from Mike Filsaime’s Affiliate Manager in which he said the absolute WORST WAY to make someone to promote for you is to not make it personal.

    To say “hey look what I got here, is going to do this and this and etc, etc” instead of getting to know each other first.

    Otherwise it’s something like finding some creepy dude out on the street and making business with him out of no prior contact at all, it’s just too effin crazy!

    PPS. Dude didn’t even reply to my e-mail (and it doesn’t even surprises me) next time I’m just going to ban his damn IP, problem solved.

    1. LOL That’s awesome man. Great examples. And much appreciated. Yeah man, it’s all personal these days. As long as we take that approach, we will always come out on top!

  20. Laser beam focus, and absolutley accurate. Thank you for this. But, also realize that, as insane as it may sound, there are many, many leaders who have no idea about attraction marketing, relationship marketing, much less social marketing.

    Some of it is “innocent”, and blocking someone could be a bit of overkill. It’s a teaching opportunity. πŸ™‚

  21. I completely agree with you. I’m on face book and slam here comes someone’s link. I just tell them it’s like chucking a flyer in my face. If they friend me and don’t say hi, I delete their link on my page.
    I wouldn’t dream of doing these things without asking first. Social grace and manners go a long way. If you wouldn’t do this in person, then you don’t do it on any social site or you will get spam complaints.

  22. WOWAS great stuff people!… couldn’t really add without duplicating so I won’t except…socialising AND gaining ‘friendship’ doesn’t revolve around a picture postcard with somebody elses ‘quote’ on it… Does my head in! lol Find your stimulus find your own words and let people discover YOU not somebody who has already been dead for a century or more…qoutes have their place and used sparingly can reinforce your point of view…my tiny point over with; Keep up the great stimulating rants Jon!

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