Social Marketing FAIL – How not to use Twitter

Twitter TweetThe other day I received an auto-follow message from someone I had “followed back” on Twitter. I usually ignore auto messages, but this one had a link to something that looked interesting to me, so I clicked on it. The link was bad. I messaged the original sender and asked if there was a mistake. He replied with the correct link, which I opened. I was fascinated by the offering, it was actually a business SaaS (software as a service) product that I have been meaning to look into but haven’t yet. Talk about a perfect social marketing pitch by this guy.

So what’s the “fail?” Well, it turns out that the website is either under development or having a problem, because when I went to check into pricing, the link didn’t work, and when I went to the contact form there was a message under the form that said (not kidding) “The submit button doesn’t do anything, so stop clicking it.”

Because I was so interested in this product, I actually made the effort to get back in touch with the guy to let him know I was having problems with the website. His response? <crickets chirping>

If you are going to use social networks for marketing, it can’t be a half-baked effort. Taking your prospect half-way down the path and then leaving them hanging is worse than never reaching out to them in the first place. If you are going to foray into social media you need to be prepared to follow-up, follow-through and check your account religiously. Anything else is just a fail.

If you don’t have the resources to support a full-time online community director or some such other fancy new media title, there are plenty of social media freelancers who will lovingly foster your presence in online communities. (I am not one of them, but if you want to get in touch I can send you some contact information.)

Have you had any remarkable marketing experiences with social media? Share them here!