In previous posts, I’ve talked about answering emails being a huge distraction, but there’s a bigger distraction lurking about 24 hours per day and 7 days per week. Yes, I’m talking about social media. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Pinterest, it’s easy to get sucked into the virtual social world.
While there can be plenty of benefits to using social media for your business, it’s important to evaluate the time you spend on social media. It’s easy to get carried away looking at pictures of mouthwatering food on Pinterest or reading clever graphics people post on Facebook, but is it growing your business?
As a general rule, social media shouldn’t require your constant presence. Think about it, your website doesn’t need your constant presence to thrive. Neither does your mailing list, but it sure can bring in a lot of profit. Why should social media take over your working day? If you’ve got yourself into a trap where social media does require your constant presence, it may not be your most effective marketing strategy and you may want to reconsider how you’re participating.
Once you’ve figured out how much time you really need to dedicate to social media, it’s much easier to come up with a plan to keep up with things in the summer. Here are a few approaches you might take:
• Schedule Social Media in Down Time: I mentioned this a few posts ago, but if you’ve got limited time to work in the summer, keep that time focused on your core business activities like email marketing, content creation, product development and promotion. Use downtime to catch up on tweets and work on your Facebook Page.
• Share Responsibilities with Your Business Partner: If you have a partner in your business, create a schedule that helps make sure social media is covered while one of you is busy. Also, having both of you participate creates even more interesting experience for your followers.
• Hire an Intern or Social Media Assistant: If you don’t have a partner, there’s still no reason you can’t hire a helper or have a small social media team. Make sure you set up a very detailed and clear social media policy so that anyone posting on your company’s behalf knows exactly what’s expected.
• Preschedule Your Updates: You can also automate your social media using a tool like Hootsuite or any other service you prefer. You can preschedule your updates, but make sure you drop by now and then to keep the conversation going and respond to comments.
Whatever approach you take, it’s important to realize that social media is simply a small part of your business and it should be managed accordingly. Scheduling your time, enlisting some help and even automating some of your social media can help you achieve the right balance.