Episode #5: The mistakes I made when I first started out with social media

In this week's episode of Let's Talk Socials, I reflected on the four mistakes I made when I started out with posting on social media in July 2020. I provide you with some tips on how to avoid these mistakes and share how I do things differently now.


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4 mistakes I made when I first started out on social media:


1) Focus too much on ME instead of THEM:

When I first started out, and we're talking July 2020 here, I was focusing way too much on ME instead of my audience. In the beginning, when I was creating posts, I would always think: "What could I post today? What has happened in my life lately that I could talk about?"


Instead, I should have asked myself: "What would actually help my audience & how can I help them solve their problems?"


My Instagram page was more like some kind of pinboard where I was going to talk about the things that happened in my business lately. "Hey, I have a new blog post! I signed a new client!" I just wasn't focused on helping my ideal clients but really more focused on myself and creating content that was easy for me to create.


This is actually something I see frequently on Instagram stories too. People focus way too much on themselves and they forget to actually serve their audience! If you start your story with: "Oh my God, please - I look so tired today! Sorry about that", that instantly takes away the audience focus and draws attention to yourself. You are on Instagram to provide value and to draw clients in with the value that you are providing. So, if you start talking about yourself the whole time and drawing attention to little flaws that probably nobody would have actually noticed anyways, then you are drawing attention to yourself instead of serving your audience.


My tip: Turn your thought process around. Think of how you can best serve your audience: What are some problems they are experiencing? What are they struggling with? And then create content around those issues instead of just posting random things that happened in your business in the last few weeks.

2) Worrying too much about metrics:

The second mistake that I made when I started out was worrying way too much about metrics. Don't get me wrong: I'm a DATA FREAK. If you could see my computer, you'd know I track everything: my social media metrics, email metrics, sales, Shopify, and even when I go on runs I have my Garmin on!


But when I started out, I would check my metrics (and especially my follower count) every single day, if not multiple times per day. I would be really disappointed when I saw someone had unfollowed me. I remember that I would sometimes even go through my follower list to see who might have unfollowed me. Definitely not healthy anymore.


I got really disappointed when someone unfollowed me and I also took it quite personally in the early days. I think that was also why it felt really draining to me, so if that is something that you are struggling with definitely take a step back from analysing too much!


With time I learned that data is just data and you shouldn't put too much of your feelings into them.

My tip: Analyse and track your metrics but don't OVER-analyse.


Another point here: a lot of my clients feel like they won't make sales or be able to take on new clients because nobody replies to their posts. Well, some of my clients have never commented on any of my posts before or even liked them because they are silent observers. So, don't panic if your metrics aren't what you expected them to be. Of course, as I said, you should regularly analyse them but don't over-analyse.


3) Not talking enough about my offers:

The third mistake was not talking enough about my offers in the early days when I was still working a full-time job next to Socials by Hanna. I still had the safety of my job and I didn't really feel the need to promote myself at all.


When I launched my first ever digital product - "30 days of stories: a 30 days story challenge" - I didn't really talk about it that much at all. I made a single post where I introduced the challenge and I replied to some questions from followers on my Instagram stories but that was it.

And obviously, that was also reflected in the results.


With the move to New Zealand, I was suddenly a full-time Social Media Manager and I had to make it work, so I started talking about my offers more and more.


You should never assume that everyone of your followers knows what you are offering and how you can help them without you talking about it.

I know it can feel a little bit icky when you start talking about your offers but you are helping people with your services and you are changing their lives for the better, so don't hide your offering from them! They need to hear from you!


4) Believing everything others said on Social/chasing hacks:

The fourth mistake was that I really believed everything others said on social media and I was constantly chasing the next hack.


I always see these posts from large Instagram gurus that give you tips on the latest updates literally minutes after Instagram shared the news. The thing is, these people couldn't even test out the strategy for themselves, let alone for their clients, so don't trust these tips.


Before I give recommendations on new strategies or techniques, I always test them out myself and, ideally, also on client accounts to be sure they work.


If you are trying all the different hacks that everyone suggests and trying something new for a week, then not seeing your result, and then again, trying something else, that's not really going to get you anywhere.


Consistency and confidence in your strategy are key to growing and getting more clients from social media.

My tips: Follow accounts that don't just post clickbait-y content but that really test out things for themselves (like me!) and don't believe every hack or strategy you see out there.



I will probably record an update in a few months' time with new mistakes but for now, I hope you enjoyed this little reflection on my past mistakes! If you liked this episode and it resonated with you, share it on your Instagram stories & let me know what you thought!



Talk to you next week when it's again time to talk socials!


Hanna