There are a lot of obvious mistakes that you can make when you’re just starting, and they don’t make you look professional. Here are the 10 most common mistakes made by beginners so you can avoid them and pretend you are an old pro.

1. Useless hashtags

Some people think hashtags are a way to add comedy to their posts or to create their own sassy subtext. That’s not the case at all. Hashtags are for getting your posts seen, and if you use a hashtag that no one else has ever used before, it won’t do you any good at all.

2. Broken hashtags

On a similar note, remember that hashtags don’t survive punctuation. So while you may be tempted to type out #don’tstopmenow as a hashtag on your Queen appreciation post, the correct form would be #dontstopmenow. Using the apostrophe would result in only ‘don’ showing up as the hashtag used.

3. Automated PMs

A few years ago, someone came up with the idea of automating private messages (or direct messages) whenever someone followed them. You would get an instant message thanking you for the follow and directing you to a website or informing you about a product. Now, they are so outdated that they just make you look spammy. Social media users are done with automated messages, and they’re wise to all the tricks, so it will harm you more than it helps.

4. Wonky follower ratios

Some people think that starting a new account means having to follow thousands of people in order to get noticed. You will get noticed – but for the wrong reasons. As a brand or influencer, if you have 2,000 followers but you are following 10,000, you don’t look professional at all. Cut out all of those accounts and start from scratch. You don’t even need to follow anyone, but if you do, make it people in your industry that you actually want to interact with.

5. Irrelevant content

When setting up a new company account, you should be very wary of sharing content that isn’t related to your brand. Let’s say that you are a personal trainer. You might just about get away with sharing fitness memes, although they aren’t usually a good choice, especially if the quality is low. You won’t get away with posting about cute puppies, the movie you saw last night, or your favorite band.

6. Mixing professional and personal posts

If you want to post personal things, create a different account. The only exception to this rule is if you are the brand – for example, if you are an influencer.

7. Posting everything by hand

With Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and a few other networks, you can make your day much easier by queueing up content ahead of time. This helps you to get everything set up in one day for the rest of the week – or even month. Don’t waste valuable time.

8. Automating everything

On the other hand, be ready to respond to current events – both in the world and in your personal life. Make edits and post in real-time when necessary.

9. Content that isn’t optimised

Make sure that you optimise your profile with keywords, and that every post contains keywords along with relevant hashtags. This will help you come up in searches so people can find you.

10. Neglecting accounts

Try to keep your posting steady. Don’t neglect some or all of your social media accounts – leave it too long, and people will think you’re gone for good.

These mistakes should be avoided at all costs if you don’t want to look like a rookie forever.


** About the Author: Corinne Ledling is a businesswoman who’s very passionate about her job. She’s a Content Manager at and loves to share social media tips and tricks.