Some things are better left behind in 2020, and that includes certain social media practices. Since the movieThe Social Dilemma debuted, there is so much talk about the dangers of social media and the addictive nature of the platforms. That conversation is an important one, but when we, as users and marketers of these platforms, act in a way that will increase our dependency and annoy our friends, we are part of the problem.

That said, here are some things you need to stop doing on the internet as a marketer.

Stop opting people into your groups or email newsletters.

I have said this so many times, I am starting to sound like a broken record. No, I do not want to be added to your WhatsApp or Facebook group, and if I did, I would ask to join. Said differently, let me opt in and don't force me to opt out.

This is true for all platforms, and it's the principle here. Adding someone to a group without their consent is obnoxious and ineffective long term. 

Stop automating your social media content across multiple platforms.

I get this question all the time. "How do I write a post and automatically distribute it on all platforms?" My response? You don't. Every platform has its nature and what works better versus other platforms. Do not automate your content. 

If your audience is different on different platforms, then you need to customize the content for that audience and if people follow you on both platforms, they are seeing the same exact content twice. Instead of automating this, spend a few minutes working on the content per platform and watch how your engagement increases.

Stop asking for likes or retweets and focus on giving me a reason to like or retweet.

How do people still think is a good idea? Do not beg for someone else to promote your content, give them a reason to. If the content is not worth sharing, even if I do share it, it won't do very well, because it lacks value.

Focus on consistent value in your content and people will organically support and promote it. Begging for this is a tasteless and ineffective way to get more eyeballs on your posts.

Stop making introductions without speaking to both sides first.

This is such a major pet peeve and I have written before on how to make introductions, and yet, people still introduce me on a daily basis without any context. It really is quite simple. If you want to introduce two people, speak to them both before, give them context on why you think they should connect, and assuming both sides agree, and then make the introduction. Context is everything and a meeting that came via an intro with no context can get super awkward.

Stop jumping right into selling and establish some trust first.

If one more person asks to join my LinkedIn network and as soon as I accept, they send me a sales pitch, I am going to lose it. What about building some trust first? What about establishing a relationship? Why send a pitch so quickly instead of investing a few days in that person and then going in for the kill?

This is so beyond ineffective and when someone does this, I immediately remove that contact from my network.

The bottom line is, all of this should be common sense but as we have all learned time and time again, common sense is not so common after all.