Over the past couple of years, social media has finally broken through to the point where essentially every business is using at least one platform. Among large businesses, the numbers are even more stark – with essentially all “top brands” utilizing at least Facebook and Twitter. Of course, just because someone is using social media, doesn’t necessarily mean they are using it correctly.

Bad social media practices are more than just a waste of time, they can actually have a negative impact on your business.

The following are 4 daily social media practices that you may think you need, but, in fact, can stop right away:

Posting every day just to post

Some people think that they need to post every day in order to “engage” with the followers. In reality, posting every single day can quickly alienate your followers, and cause them to tune out your posts, or worse, unfollow you altogether.

This is true for a couple of reasons. The first is simply that fact that everyone is already following numerous different accounts, and there is plenty of content for them to consume whether you post or not – i.e. they won’t be sitting there wondering where your post of the day is. The second reason is simply the fact that it is difficult to find something interesting and engaging to post every single day; some days there simply isn’t anything great to post.

When in doubt, remember this simple statement: on social media, quality over quantity every time.

Paying for followers

Even today, there are some people who choose to purchase followers for their account so that the account does not look dormant or vacant. This is problematic because it is typically pretty obvious when an account has purchased followers. Not only that, those followers aren’t going to be actively engaged members of your social media community, which means they offer essentially zero value on a platform designed to be engaging and interactive.

Having social media accounts on every platform

For people who are new to social media, it can be tempting to create accounts on every social media platform. After all, if Facebook is good, why not have Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn as well?

The simple reason is that you won’t be able to create distinct content for each of those platforms without committing significant (and unnecessary) resources to the project. Instead of trying to be a jack of all trades on social media, pick one or two that really fit your business (e.g. Instagram for visually-driven businesses, Twitter for news or buzz-driven businesses) and focus your efforts there. You can always add another platform if you want later on.

Automatically scheduling status updates, Tweets, etc.

In addition to all of the obvious reasons that scheduling updates can be a bad idea – such as being disconnected from the overall process and losing the “human” element – there is a risk of publishing a post in bad taste based on current events. You can avoid this by only posting high-quality content yourself (or through your designated social media manager).

If you eliminate these unnecessary, and potentially harmful, social media habits, you will be well on your way to making social media an even more effective part of your business!