Is SPAM Part of Your Social Media Campaign?

Are you using spam as part of your social media campaigns?  Could you be using spam and not be aware of it?

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Defining Spam

Miriam Webster defines spam as: e-mail that is not wanted ; e-mail that is sent to large numbers of people and that consists mostly of advertising

We all know about email going to a spam folder and if you send emails to a group of people or a list, you are aware of things to prevent your email going to a spam folder. 

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Now if you Google “spam” in Google this is the definition you get:

Noun: irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the Internet to a large number of recipients.

Verb: send the same message indiscriminately to (large numbers of recipients) on the Internet.

And my favorite definition from Webopedia included this statement : spam is an endless repetition of worthless text

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Social Media is Like a Party

Think of Social Media as a party.  If you went to a pool party and just met someone, would you really say any of the following:

  • Nice to meet you, Join my business!
  • Nice to meet you, buy from me
  • Glad we met; let’s go to a different party.  (Glad we met, follow me on LinkedIn too!)  
  • And this is my all time favorite: “Glad to connect.  I am close to reaching a huge goal, please check out my website and help me reach it”

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Seriously folks are you going to say any of those things as soon as you meet someone in person.  Of course not!  Do not be as equally stupid as to do this when you first connect with someone on Twitter or on any platform. You know that is considered rude, whatever made you think it is OK to do it on Social Media? Maybe someone did it to you, sorry no excuse.

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Twitter never meant it to be a place to spam folks.  Unfortunately that is exactly what it has become.  It seems to me there is more spam on Twitter than other platforms. I hate it because I love Twitter.  I have reached the point where I no longer look at Direct Messages.  Could I be missing something important?  Of course, but out of an average of 40-60 direct messages a day, I may find one interesting thing.  I do not have time in my life for the trash that direct messaging has become.

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Do not use the auto direct message every time someone follows you on Twitter unless it is something very generic.  I cannot even count how many people sent auto direct messages offering to do my social media for me.  You know what that says about you?  That you never even took the time to read or learn about me or you would know that I am a social media manager.  Kind of like saying “I just want to show how dumb I can be”

Another favorite is: “Hi, I am glad we hooked up.  I want to help you.  Take a look at this and let’s keep it between just us” 

Really?  As if you are doing me some great favor by trying to recruit me to your business and you disguise it as something helpful. 

Now please do not think this happens on just Twitter.  LinkedIn folks connect using groups.  Unfortunately, using that option to be able to connect with folks seems to mean to some folks that they have free reign to say:”Hi!  We are part of the same group.  Check out my business opportunity.” 

 

Seriously?  LinkedIn is supposed to be more professional.  This is a business social media site for professionals.  What professional acts like that?  Does an optician go to church and announce to everyone there:  “I have my own business.  Please buy your glasses from me.”

I  believe that the same folks that  spam others on Social Media would be highly offended if someone did that to them in person, so what makes it OK to do this on Social Media? 

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Private messaging is just as bad on Facebook.  We do have #fanpagefriday, but even that has turned into a spam fest.  Instead of just telling someone that you just followed them it becomes a series of private messages to join the business opportunity, buy these diet products, try this “lash product”, and of course the buy this jewelry to help me.  Adding please to you request when you private message, Direct Message, or mail someone does not make it less spammy, it makes it more pitiful. 

Here is a quote from someone that messaged me: “Hi, sorry to bother you. I’m so close to a huge goal, I’d love for you to go take a look at my website and see if there is anything you like:  WebsiteSoICanSpendMoney.com”

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Now some may think that I am being harsh or overly sensitive.  Let me tell you about my current and past 2 year state.  My husband lost his job 2 years ago. He then had a heart attack 1 year ago.  I went into cancer remission 3 years ago.  Needless to say unemployment is gone.  He works 4 hours a day at FedEx.  I work what is supposed to be a full time job at $9 an hour, but I am lucky if I see 32 hours a week.  Take out insurance and I see about 450 for two weeks of work.  That gives us enough to pay our mortgage, water bill and electric bill.  Do you think that I have money to buy jewelry, lashes or any other products at this point in my life?  Now this is not info I blast over my social media sites, but how many other people are possibly in a similar type of financial situation?  Asking me to buy your product is actually offensive to me unless you are what I would consider a friend.  Frankly, I feel that only a friend should reach out to me with that kind of request, and real friendships are more than just clicking a like button.  Believe it or not, friends talk.  They can talk about personal things or even business things, bottom line they talk.

What is the solution?

Give your potential customers the opportunity to come to you because of the value you are providing.  If you are in Twitter, answer questions or give solutions to problems your customer might have. 

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When you are in LinkedIn, provide value in those groups that you are discussing with.  If you have nothing of value to offer, that does not make it the time to bring up your business, it is the time to be silent.  If someone in your niche offers better advice, acknowledge it and be mature and professional

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When you are on Facebook, use those private messages to communicate things that should not be made public.  This is not the place to spam, beg or plead.

Every social media platform gives you the opportunity to get leads for your product or business, but you have to develop those leads.  Earn the right to ask that person for the business by having already provided so much that the customer is waiting for you to ask for the sell or they just buy on their own.

Conclusion

Using spam will only hurt your online reputation and eventually your business.  You may have heard others are getting results and even you might get some results, but it will eventually hurt you.  What about you?  How do you feel about spam on social media?  Comment below and tell me about it. 

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