What Not To Do On Social Media by Sage Island
July 4th, 2014

What Not To Do On Social Media: Our Staff Weighs In

by Regina DiPerna

At Sage Island, we’ve given a lot of advice over the years about the best social media strategies and practices. When handled well, social media can be a fun, interactive way for customers to get to know you and/or the brand you represent. However, in the wrong hands, social media can make you look bad. Real bad. And nobody wants that, especially when the success of your business is on the line.

Since Sage Island is staffed by some of the tech-savviest folks around, we decided to ask the experts. We’ve compiled a guide to what not to do on social media to help you navigate the social minefield. Here’s what our team had to say.

What do you think are the worst types of posts on social media?

From account executive Gregory Mason: “If you are doing a contest on social media, holy cow… make it easy. If I was going to enter, I’m not going to follow 10 pages, use 3 hashtags, mention 5 people…do a handstand, flap my wings… just make it easy for me.”

From account executive Mara Stimac: “You can tell when a brand or business is trying too hard. Be authentic and real. Speak how you would speak to a customer standing in front of you. Don’t oversell yourself. Instead, provide useful, interesting information that you think customers who would be walking through your doors would want to know.”

From our customer engagement specialist and all-around social media warrior Ashley Bullin: “I hate the infamous everyday quoters. ‘When one door closes, another one opens…life is what you make it, yada…yada…yada.’ Say something original.”

From our CEO and resident kid enthusiast Mike Duncan: ‘’Photos of kids and pumpkins/puppies/cakes/anything.”

From project manager Kim Lannou: “Please do not publicize a post with incorrect grammar, punctuation, or spelling. I’m certainly no literary police here, but a misspelling or word misuse takes the focus off the message and instead draws attention towards the mistake.”

From Donnie Bullers, our controller (we promise he’s not as bad as his job title makes him sound): “Tweets or posts that are solely made up of hashtags. I have no desire to stop and read those types of posts.”

From customer engagement specialist Stephanie DeLuca: “When people do this.”

And from our very own Graham Williams, who we’re not sure is an actual employee or just some roustabout we let drink our coffee: “Penalty. Yellow Card. Don’t interrupt my World Cup again.”

Got it.

If you’re guilty of any of these offenses, don’t fret. There’s no time like the present to turn around your social media persona. We pitched it to our team to get their (wait for it) Sage advice.

What do you think businesses should do better on social media?

According to Kaylie Soule: “I think businesses should do a better job of defining a strategy for their social media. So often you see posts done so haphazardly without a clear direction or call to action behind it. It’s as if businesses suddenly think ‘We need to post something on Facebook, we haven’t done that in a while!’”

From Donnie Bullers: “Look alive. It’s pretty simple. Do not initiate a presence on more networks than you can easily manage and make it appear like your profile is actively updated.”

Ashley Bullin chimes in: “Businesses can do a better job of humanizing their brand on social media. Posting behind-the-scenes photos, social gatherings with their team, etc. are the most engaging content we at Sage Island share. People want to know you’re an industry expert, sure. But they love seeing your personality shine through even more.”

From Mara Stimac: “Spend time, energy, and resources on beautiful imagery. It makes such a difference. When something catches your eye or is interesting to look at, you’ll spend more time on it and be left with a positive impression of the brand.”

Some last minute advice from Gregory Mason: “Please don’t share anything from a fishy looking URL whose title is always ‘…and then I couldn’t BELIEVE what happened next!’ with red arrows and circles on a blurry part of the image. Dumb.”

From Kim Lannou: “Keep it simple. When my brain is mush and I’m engrossed in a social media outlet, I want to be able to quickly and effortlessly digest the posts. Utilize captivating images paired with short, sweet messages and you’ll get my attention!”

She goes on: “Businesses should identify their audience’s persona and post topics that will excite that targeted audience. I find that those businesses that post information that is trending, speak in a tone/voice recognizable by the audience, and pose a question end up having the most engaging and interesting posts.”

Oh, and what was that Ashley? “PLEASE STOP SENDING ME CANDY CRUSH SAGA INVITATIONS. NO. JUST NO.”

And there you have it. Look, we know that social media can be tricky and that underneath the hype, there is a lot on the line. But when handled with care, it can take your brand to new heights by building authentic brand loyalty. Social media is how you can turn users into customers, and customers into advocates. If you need help crafting a strategy and brand persona on social media, let our team at Sage Island do the work for you. Contact us today to see what our social media experts can do for you.