It seems like most people I meet these days want to talk about social media and the pro’s and con’s of using it for business. Some people love it, some people hate it. Most of our readers probably know I love social media but I’m also aware that it can be a massive distraction and time waster. I must confess, at times I have probably bordered on being a social media junkie.
Social Media Danger Signs
I think we could all rattle off a list of friends and family who seem addicted to using social media. Some business people rationalise it in their own minds by calling it a ‘marketing tool’. If it truly is marketing then show me the results. You really need to count the cost to measure its usefulness as marketing in your business. How many hours do you put in and what kind of return are you getting? It’s my view many people are using ‘social media marketing’ as a guise to what it really is, procrastination.
The worst addicts are those that use a variety of social media platforms jumping from one place to next all day. What a distraction. They have allowed their social media to take over their whole working day. For these people, saying they are going to jump onto social media for a minute is just as realistic as a choc-o-holic to say they will have only one piece. It’s not going to happen.
Social Media Marketing
If you are using social media as a genuine marketing strategy, you must create a plan to leverage your time effectively. You have got to use your time efficiently in order to produce the results you intend.
I am not saying you should be looking for a quick sale. Social media isn’t the place to blatantly advertise your products and services, it’s a place to build relationships with prospects and customers. Abusing this principle will ensure your social media is a complete waste of time.
Here are some tips you can apply to help you manage your time in social media:
In ‘The 4 Hour Work Week’, Tim Ferriss calls it a low information diet. You should be selective in who you follow in Twitter and who you become friends with in Facebook.
You need to have discipline right from the start to only read that which is beneficial and productive to your business or you could find yourself stuck in cyberspace for hours each day.
It was popular a few years back to refer to the internet as ‘The information super highway’. Guess what, there are thousands of dump trucks filled with junk, ready to dump right into right in your lap if you let them.
Develop a System
Your social media activity has got to be a combination of creativity and logical, systematic strategy. Without creativity you will be as boring a bat poop. Without systems, you will be sucked into a vortex of meaningless conversations.
Keep your systems flexible so you can adapt and improve it as you go. The social media world is evolving and people are interacting with it in new ways. Who knows exactly where it will all end up?
Managing your social networks is an ongoing process. Everything you do should be monitored over time so you can identify what is most successful. Take note of the things that are working well, those needing improvements and those that you should scrap. Most of us have heard of the 80/20 rule. I’d suggest in social media the ratios are even more disproportionate. I’d say its more like 90/10, that is 90% of your results come from 10% of your actions in social media.
What are your thoughts?