Get off the bandwagon – your hypocrisy is showing
Double standards are rife on social media, and it sucks.
Be kind. Until someone does something wrong, and then it’s ok to tear strips off them and comment on what a terrible person they are.
Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Unless it’s an opinion you don’t like, and then it’s fine to shoot them down and tell them to keep their opinions to themselves.
Someone you like and respect can make a mistake because “we all make mistakes”, but if someone you don’t like makes a mistake, it’s unforgivable.
We are all hypocrites.
Even me. Because even though I am a big advocate of sharing whatever you want on social media, I am about to tell you to avoid sharing content about the latest hot topic, news story or passing fad. Or as I like to call it ‘Bandwagon Content’.
Let me be clear, if the story is relevant to your business, then of course you should talk about it. Accountants talking about the Spring budget or Cyber Security experts discussing a huge data breach – makes complete sense.
But let me explain why I think jumping on the bandwagon when it’s not relevant is a terrible idea.
It distracts you from your marketing goals
I am on LinkedIn to generate new business. Making friends, finding suppliers and learning new stuff are all added benefits – happy consequences. I like it when they happen, but my main objective for being on LinkedIn is to win business.
If you are there for another reason – if you aren’t interested in getting new clients – then this article is probably irrelevant to you. Post what you want.
But if, like me, you are on a specific social media platform for marketing reasons, why on earth would you waste your energy posting about stuff that nobody is going to remember in two weeks?
Sure, you might get a few new profile views, even a couple of connections, but are they your ideal clients? And are they going to remember why they connected with you once the topic of conversation is no longer making headlines?
You’re only going to have to spend ages replying to comments that are nothing to do with business. And, chances are, some antagonistic arsehole will start a debate in your comments section, leading to more wasted time and energy.
It’s so easy to post about the latest trending topic, but the whole point of marketing is to get in front of your ideal prospects. How will you do that if you’re posting the same content as everyone else? Do you want to blend in, or do you want to stand out?
If your prospects’ feeds are full of posts about the same story, it’s a prime opportunity to get their attention by posting something different.
Bandwagons can be dangerous
It’s very easy to rush to judgement and share opinions without having all the facts. I have seen people making pretty awful comments without fully understanding a situation.
There was an entire hate thread about someone I know personally because someone didn’t agree with a comment he made (something she later admitted he was actually right about).
People were jumping on with comments like “he sounds like a vile person”, “what an arsehole – I wouldn’t do business with him,” and, “he’s a bully.”
Let’s just think about that for a moment. Calling someone a bully on a thread dedicated to assassinating a person’s character. Who is the real bully?
Some comments were even worse – comments about his family, his clients. People were attacking an individual that they didn’t even know.
And this isn’t an isolated incident. People are quick to demonise a person, and the idea of being kind goes out the window.
When a certain beer company was accused of having a toxic culture in 2021, people were quick to share posts about what a horrible person the owner was – some really nasty comments.
Maybe he is an arsehole – I don’t know, I’ve never met him – but does that mean he deserves to be torn apart on social media? What if all that online hate tipped him over the edge, and he took his life? Would those same people be coming out telling us to be kind?
Isn’t that exactly what happened to Caroline Flack in 2020? The media had no problem feeding her to the wolves, and the public turned on her. She took her own life, and suddenly everyone felt terrible.
But have we learned anything, or are we still quick to judge people without thinking about the bigger picture? Why are people still so eager to get their pitchforks out?
It’s too easy to jump in with an opinion before taking time to reflect and ensure it’s an informed opinion. And even if it is an informed opinion, does it need to be shared? Sometimes the ‘if you’ve got nothing nice to say, don’t say anything’ approach works perfectly well.
Evergreen content is a far better investment
Ice bucket challenge.
Beans on Weetabix.
The Mannequin Challenge.
Is this dress black & blue or gold & white?
The Colin the caterpillar debate
Fads. Trends. Things that are forgotten within weeks.
Who remembers the winner of the fourth series of Big Brother or X Factor? They were probably all front-page news stories at the time.
What about the celebrity affairs, sports controversies or political scandals that were once hot topics of conversation?
You can jump on the latest fad or trending topic, but bear in mind you’re making disposable content. Content that can only be used once.
Even if it goes viral, your success from it will be short-lived. And going viral doesn’t always equate to new business.
If time and money are limited when it comes to your marketing, don’t waste those limited resources on disposable content. Spend your time creating stuff that can be shared multiple times or repurposed and reused. It’s a far better investment.
Think before you post
It’s entirely up to you what you post on your business pages. As I said at the start, I know I sound like a hypocrite telling you what not to post when I’m constantly banging on about how you shouldn’t try and please everyone.
But if you take anything away from this article, please let it be this: think before you post.
Why are you posting about that topic?
Is it relevant to your business, or are you simply jumping on the latest bandwagon?
Are you sharing an informed opinion, or are you rushing to judgement?
Is there a chance you could regret your post later?
Will dealing with the comments (and potential trolls) be a good use of your time?
It doesn’t matter what the answers are as long as you’ve considered them and are prepared for the consequences.
And if you would like help coming up with content that isn’t centred on the latest celebrity gossip, book a session with me.
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