The Disadvantages of Social Media Marketing

Pamela Obeid

May 12, 2022

This may come as a shock – social media marketing isn’t perfect.

You might be confused. Why would we go on so much about social media marketing at Local Digital if it isn’t worth my time, you might be asking?

It’s definitely still worth your time.

But it’s also worth realising that it isn’t perfect.

With any marketing strategies, there are disadvantages, and social media is no exception. It’s still very effective – but there are hurdles worth considering. 

Settle in, and we’ll get into it.

You open yourself up to negative feedback

People use social media to share content they love, but they can also use it to share unpleasant experiences – you know, things they don’t quite love. 

If someone has had a poor experience with your business, they may share this experience with others, whether it’s on their social media platform, or on yours.

This negative feedback can come in different forms – such as leaving a negative review on Facebook, or tagging your company on Twitter to share a negative experience. People can also share or retweet this feedback, allowing it to spread even further.

Essentially, social media platforms are catalysts for leaving complaints and negative feedback towards companies. People use their social media profiles to help others understand their experience, and many people feel a social obligation to share this experience to prevent others from feeling the same.

People trust others to give insight into a company, and social media may hinder your business from earning leads if the reviews are negative.

Pro tip – make sure to always respond to negative feedback on social media. Don’t leave these concerns unaddressed – addressing these issues can speak volumes about both your company and your values.

Embarrassment is another potential

It’s easy for posts to go viral on social media. People keep a close eye on the good and the bad, and if you aren’t careful about what you’re posting, getting caught in an awkward situation isn’t ideal.

The hashtag #WhyIStayed, for example, was trending on social media, a hashtag which surrounded topics of victims of domestic violence sharing their story. The hashtag was effective at working as a catalyst for conversations about domestic violence.

A pizza company saw this hashtag trending but failed to understand what the hashtag was about, instead using it as brand exposure to talk about pizza. Within minutes after the company tweet was posted, people were outraged. The tweet was quickly deleted, but the impact remained.

The company spent weeks doing damage control about this tweet, but the mistakes lived on – a negative perception was already formed.

Pro tip – do your research. Whether it’s a hashtag, video, or photo – make sure it can’t be construed the wrong way. This will help you avoid embarrassment.

You need to spend a lot of times on your campaigns

Social media isn’t a done and dusted marketing type – new content needs to be constantly created and posted, and you need to engage with your audiences too. It’s definitely time consuming, to say the least.

Small businesses or companies with a small marketing department might find it challenging to manage a social media marketing campaign, struggling to find the time to balance resources.

If you aren’t doing enough with your socials because of a lack of time or resources, your campaigns won’t be as strong. You’ll therefore struggle to find success on these platforms, compared to your competition.

Pro tip – outsource your digital marketing campaigns to a digital marketing agency, like us. Get a free proposal with Local Digital today to see how we can help.

You need to wait to see results

When companies invest in marketing strategies, they’d like to see immediate results. You want to know that your strategies are working. The downfall with social media marketing, however, is that results aren’t instant.

Social media marketing’s success is based on the campaign’s overall success, not individual pieces of content. Posting one piece of content doesn’t determine this success – posting multiple pieces of content over a period of time will. 

This is another downside of the platform. Patience is key – wait a few weeks to see these results, and then adjust your campaign.

Pro tip – really, it’s patience. Remind yourself that results aren’t immediate, and your campaign needs to run for some time before seeing results. Track the performance of your social media posts as you post them, ready for comparison once your campaign has been running for some time.

Social media marketing: friend or foe?

Don’t be deterred – social media may have its flaws, but it’s ultimately a strong platform worth considering for all of your marketing needs.

It can help increase your brand awareness, as long as you’re aware, do your research, respond to all complaints, and above all – remain patient!

Of course, we’re always here to take the load off your shoulders. Get a free proposal with Local Digital today to see how we can help.

About Pamela Obeid

Pamela is the Digital Marketing & Podcast Coordinator at Local Digital. A self-proclaimed nerd, she thrives off all things social media, podcast, and video, propelling the LD brand to brand new heights.