The current generation has seen the creation, development and explosion of social media. “As of August 2012, 72% of marketers saw an increasing demand for social media services.” Although this is true, we have also seen how businesses can misuse and/or not take full advantage of its capabilities.  In Bill Faeth’s article “Has Your Company Graduated from Social Media School Yet?”  he explains how some businesses can make serious social media errors using Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Facebook is commonly thought of as an interactive profile made for an individual. While Facebook initially boomed with young individuals, these pages are now developing for businesses. The typical mistake when creating a business account is not setting up the right platform.  A business needs a page; not a profile. This allows for better optimization and expansion of visibility through a variety of categories.

With Twitter the most frequent mistake is putting a handle at the beginning of a tweet. This “significantly reduce(s) the content’s mileage” because it limits the tweets visibility to only the recipient and your mutual followers.

When using Pinterest, brands should “take the time to designate specific and searchable board categories.” Instead of taking multiple topics and grouping them together, take the time to spread them out. When you limit yourself to one board it creates unnecessary clutter and reduces your reach.  This is an opportunity to show off your expertise through specific and unique boards.

The key to successful social media is to understand the basics so that you can eventually expand your skills thereby achieving an advantage over your competitors!  For more on best practices for reaching your audience check out the full article.