Training and social media: five key mistakes | AccountingWEB

Training and social media: five key mistakes

Social media tools such as Twitter and Facebook are powerful forms of communication, so make sure you make the most of them and avoid these common mistakes . . .

At the very core of training is communication. Whether that’s in a classroom, over the internet, or from a marketing perspective, training businesses must have their people interaction skills perfected if they are to succeed in what is becoming an increasingly competitive marketplace.

And, unless you’ve been living in a cave for the past ten years, you will have noticed that social media has now has firmly established itself as a front-runner in the world of communication and marketing. While there may not be any hard and fast rules to social media, there are plenty of ways to get it wrong. Below are five key mistakes that tend to crop up when training companies and social media collide. 

"People want to work with experts and social media is the perfect way to showcase your expertise."

1 Leaving profiles half finished

Social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook have profile options for a reason and it's not to steal your data. By adding as much information as possible to your account it will curry favour to your account and add authority. Keep information up to date and relevant. Spammers create accounts quickly and do the bare minimum. Experts take time to understand how each element can add value and then test this by utilising the option and finding out how that improves results. For example, try different backgrounds on your Twitter account or change your bio information to see if more people follow you.

2 Focus too much on selling

Although social media can be incredibly effective at selling your products and services, this should not be your only focus for these tools. Social media is about nurturing an engaged audience by valuing what they have to say and respecting them by understanding their needs and providing interesting information they can utilise to improve their lives. This is why we create products and services however, what people find really valuable is what our products do for them. We can share this expertise by sharing articles, writing and sharing blog posts, creating whitepapers and answering industry specific questions. People want to work with experts and social media is the perfect way to showcase expertise.

3 Not interacting on a valuable level

There is a common misconception, mainly from people who don't benefit from social media, that people just write updates about their lunch or talk endlessly about how incredible they are. While there is something to say for adding personal insights, for business you're looking to connect on a more productive level. By identifying, filtering and sharing great quality articles, news, tips and research that you know are relevant to your clients, you will gain market leadership. Even small companies can be perceived as market leaders if they are continually leading the way with intelligent and articulate insights into their industry.

4 Not searching for joint venture partners

Social media is a fantastic way to connect directly with potential business partners. By following people who may be relevant, you can get a deep insight into what their interests are and where their expertise lies. Connect with potential joint venture partners on a regular basis and be open to create new areas of opportunity.

5 Not utilising lists

Twitter lists, where you search Tweets on specific words or terms, are becoming ever more important. This is because there’s so much noise on social media that it's important to create a very selective view on subjects that are important to you and your business. To do this, just search for a key term in the search bar, say, Arsenal, and then create a list from the top 20 people in the list. This way you get a view on the most influential Tweeters in one place. 


Ingram Sanders is the co-founder of training specialist digital marketing agency GoldSand Digital. The lead generation tool iLead Revolution is now in operation within training companies throughout the UK, helping businesses to get one-on-one meetings with HR decision-makers. Download the entire 17 uncommon social media mistakes by clicking on Market My Training.

This blog

AccountingWEB is more than just a U.S. team of journalists and financial and technology experts - we have an international side, too. Members of our British team who publish share their ideas, insights, and perspectives from across the pond.

More from this blog

Bloggers crew

Steve Knowles has spent 25 years in business and practice in the UK, but he also worked in the states and the years haven't dulled his way of seeing an alternative view to everyone else, and every day is a new adventure.


Joel M. Ungar, CPA is a lifelong resident of the Detroit area and a graduate of The University of Michigan. He is a principal with Silberstein Ungar, PLLC, a Top 15 auditor of SEC public reporting companies.


Allan Boress, CPA, with over 25 years as a practitioner and consultant to the accounting profession. Mr. Boress is the author of 12 published books in 6 different languages, including a best-seller, The "I-Hate-Selling" Book.


Larry Perry, CPA, CPA Firm Support Services, LLC, is the author of accounting and auditing manuals, author and presenter of live staff training seminars, and author of webcast and self-study CPE programs. He blogs about small audits, reviews, and compilations.

Sandra Wiley, COO and Shareholder, is ranked by Accounting Today as one of the 100 Most Influential People in Accounting as a result of her prominent role as an industry expert on HR and training as well as influence as a management and planning consultant. She is also a founding member of The CPA Consultant's Alliance. Sandra is a certified Kolbe™ trainer who advises firms on building balanced teams, managing employee conflict and hiring staff.

Maria Calabrese, CIR, Human Resources manager for Fazio, Mannuzza, Roche, Tankel, LaPilusa, LLC in Cranford, New Jersey, Maria's topics revolve around the world of: Mentoring, Performance management, and The "Y Generation," a.k.a. "The whY generation".


William Brighenti is a CPA, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and Certified [Business] Valuation Analyst, operating an accounting, tax, and QuickBooks consulting firm in Hartford, Connecticut, Accountants CPA Hartford.


Ken Garen, CPA, is the co-founder and President of Universal Business Computing Company (, a software development firm of high-volume, high-productivity accounting and payroll technology.


Eva Rosenberg, MBA, EA, is the publisher of, and author of the weekly syndicated Ask TaxMama column. She provides answers to tax questions from taxpayers and tax professionals worldwide.


Amy Vetter, CPA, CITP is the CPA Programs Leader for Intacct Corporation responsible for leading the CPA/BPO Partners nationally.

Brian Strahle is the owner of LEVERAGE SALT, LLC where he provides state and local tax technical services to accounting firms, law firms and tax research organizations across the United States. He also writes a weekly column in Tax Analysts State tax Notes entitled, "The SALT Effect." For more info, visit his website:
Scott H. Cytron, ABC, is president of Cytron and Company, known for helping companies and organizations improve their bottom line through a hybrid of strategic public relations, communications, marketing programs and top-notch client service. An accredited consultant, Scott works with companies, organizations and individuals in professional services (accounting, finance, medical, legal, engineering), high-tech and B2B/B2C product/service sales.

Rita Keller is a nationally known CPA firm management consultant, speaker, author, mentor and blogger. She has over 30 years hands-on experience in CPA firm management, marketing, technology and administrative operations.

Stacy Kildal is the mom of two fantastic kids, an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, Certified Enterprise Solutions ProAdvisor, Sleeter Group Certified Consultant, a nationally recognized member of the Intuit Trainer and Writer Network, and co-host of RadioFree QuickBooks.
Michael Alter's blog specializes in providing practical advice to those who seek greater profitability and practice management tactics that enhance deeper client relationships.

Sally Glick, CMO, Principal, Marketer of the Year in 2003 and AAM Hall of Famer in 2007, leads a lively discussion of the constantly expanding roles of marketing and the professional marketers that drive this initiative in accounting firms of all sizes.


The IMA Young Professionals Blog features the insights of IMA’s Young Professionals Committee. Committee members share advice and experiences on careers, continuing education, work/life balance, and other issues affecting young accounting and finance professionals.


FEI Financial Reporting Blog provides highlights from SEC, PCAOB, FASB, IASB, and other regulatory news, including reporting under Sarbanes-Oxley Sect 404. It is written by Edith Orenstein, Director of Technical Policy Analysis at FEI.


Sue Anderson has 30 years of experience in continuing education for accountants. Currently she is the program director for online CPE provider CPE Link.


Jim Fahey is COO of Apple Growth Partners, a regional CPA firm in Ohio. His focus is on the effective and efficient use of technology within the firm by all team members.

Caleb Newquist is the Editor-in-Chief of Sift Media US, overseeing content for both AccountingWEB and Going Concern.

Leita Hart-Fanta, CPA, CGFM, and CGAP is the author of "The Yellow Book Interpreted" and owner of a website devoted to training for governmental auditors.


AccountingWEB is more than just a U.S. team of journalists and financial and technology experts - we have an international side, too! Members of our British team who publish share their ideas, insights, and perspectives from across the pond.