Social media channels are powerful marketing tools that can help a company interact with their customers and stay competitive. However, many businesses miss out on this great opportunity by having poor social media management or no management at all. In fact, statistics show that only 20% of small businesses in South Africa are present online and make use of basic online marketing tools such as websites, social media or marketing campaigns.

A common misconception shared by small businesses is that managing a social media account is not an important task. For this reason, business owners usually delegate an employee to manage their social media accounts. This is a  strategy which may compromise a company, as although an employee might do an adequate job , there are many examples of social media disasters that tarnish the image of a company instead of improving it. What is more surprising is the fact that small mistakes can have potentially far-reaching consequences.

Our research shows that three of the most common social media disasters are:

  1. Incorrect Use of Hashtags

A hashtag is a label used on social networks, usually Twitter or Facebook, which allows users to locate a specific theme or identify content. By using a hashtag incorrectly, the message  your business is trying to promote may not reach your target audience. Among some of the most common mistakes are: lack of proper research before using a hashtag, using overly-complicated hashtags that are too cryptic to locate; and not promoting your hashtags properly.

  1. Improper Use of Text or Images

Many companies allow their employees to post on their social media accounts as a way of promoting various products or services. However, there are countless examples of inappropriate postings in the form of text or images, done by such employees. This kind of mistake can have a negative impact on the image of the company, which results in  customers  questioning the company’s reputation.

  1. Ignoring Reputation Management

You don’t need statistics to understand that sooner or later, any business must deal with a dissatisfied customer or even worse, a dissatisfied employee. Not knowing how to professionally defuse negative comments, complaints or bad reviews, has the potential to harm the image of your brand, business or company, especially on social media where one wrong step will be seen by many.

Professional social media management can make a huge difference between your business’ successful online marketing campaign and a social media disaster. For professional advice regarding the social media management your brand deserves, find out more at

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