Training and social media: five key mistakes

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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.

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