Hey hey happy minisode Friday! This week’s interview with Nicholas Collins was a fun one and one thing we talked about a lot was social media and the presence it plays in kids lives.
As someone that started their career in social media, I’ve always had a weird relationship with it. Like, part of me loves it and it’s brought me to some of my closest friends. It can definitely be used for inspiration and connection.
But the other part of me really struggles with it because I don’t want to feel constantly tied to my phone and to be honest, I like having part of my life private. I don’t want to share EVERYTHING about my life.
It’s hard for me to completely disconnect because it is very tied to my job, but at times I do have to completely step away.
In today’s minisode, I share reasons why we should ALL spend less time on social media and 3 tips on how you can limit your time.
Excited for you to tune in and hope you enjoy!
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If you haven’t heard, I love social media. I truly think it can help transform a small business. In fact, it’s a large part of how I grow my own business.
I asked 15 small business owners how social media has helped them grow their business and I can’t wait to share! There are a lot of goodies in here, so take notes!
Social media has been the catalyst of my personal brand and business. It allows me to directly connect with community members through my #createlounge Twitter chat and through personal Instagram updates. Whenever I launch a new product or service offering, I never have to feel like I’m going to launch to crickets because I have a supportive community on social media. Social media is absolutely worth the time investment, especially in the early stages of your business growth.Social media is absolutely worth the time investment, especially in the early stages via @kayla_hollatz @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media has helped grow my business in so many ways. Honestly, if I didn’t have social media I wouldn’t have a business.
Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest have been the big game-changers for me. Twitter introduced me to my best friend and is responsible for forming my mastermind. I don’t want to think about where I’d be without those amazing ladies. Facebook groups have been helpful in building relationships, finding clients, and growing my traffic. Finding each group’s daily threads and participating regularly is a great way to make the most of the groups you’re in. And Pinterest has been my #1 traffic source from the day I started giving it the attention it deserved as a social media account.
If you’re looking to grow your business through social media, be sure to study up on how to best use each platform. I recommend focusing on one platform at a time until you get the hang of it and really key in on what works well and what your audience resonates with. It can be time-consuming, but it’s well worth it!I recommend focusing on 1 platform at a time until you get the hang of it via @heykristarae @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media is the number one factor that has helped me grow my business. Pinterest, along with other social media platforms, is where I get most of the traffic to my blog. And more traffic means a bigger platform, which means a growing business. Without social media my business wouldn’t be successful.More traffic means a bigger platform, which means a growing business via @natalierbacon @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
I had achieved success on Pinterest for a past travel business, and ended up booking over 75% of my travel clients directly from Pinterest. So I knew how powerful it could be! But I didn’t know how well it would work for my current business. Well, I shouldn’t have doubted it! Pinterest allowed me to go from a “nobody” in my industry to being seen as an “expert” with knowledge worth sharing. There is no way I would have been able to build my email list to over 3,000 subscribers in under a year without the use of social media to help me get my message out!
A lot of people are on social media to get clients + sales. We’ll be honest, our regular social media posting has never gotten us a client — and we’re totally okay with that! What social media has done for our biz is that it allows us to connect with like-minded business owners. Having a place where we can openly share wins and struggles, while being supported by a community is essential to our ability to be boss day in and day out.Social media allows us to connect with like-minded business owners via @weare407 @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
When I started Amy Howard Social, I had a super small social media following – like most do when starting out. In less than one year, I now have a combined social media following of over 12k. This has resulted in an increase of blog traffic, client work, brand awareness, and relationship building. Social media is a huge part of my business, seeing that I am a social media strategist. I cannot express all that social media can do, but for me and my small business it has helped me quickly grow my dream biz! Pinterest is BY FAR my number one traffic driver and Instagram is my favorite for relationship building.Social media has helped me quickly grow my dream biz via @amyhowardsocial @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media not only launched my business, but has given me a visible platform to help and encourage women. Whether it be running Twitter Parties, hosting Instagram campaigns like #theimperfectboss or using social media to make new friends, it has grown my email list, connected me to clients and given me a voice. I believe social media can be a weapon in our business and a platform for so much goodness.Social media has given me a visible platform to help & encourage women via @ashleybeaudin @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media has played a huge role in my business, and it’s actually how I got my business off the ground when I had first started offering blog design services. Since then it’s helped me connect with people who may need my services through word of mouth and my sharing blog posts or my work, and that’s just Twitter! Facebook and Instagram have been a bit trickier to land clients through, but through sharing my work on Instagram with strategic hashtags and others mentioning me for work in Facebook threads, all three platforms have been amazing for my business!Social media has helped me connect with people who may need my services via @korymae @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
I owe a lot of my success in business to social media. It expands my reach and gets my content in front of thousands of people and gives me an opportunity to connect and build relationships with other online business owners. Most of my clients come from social media and most of my ideas for products or services are initially generated through questions I see people asking on social media. Overall, as far as I am concerned – social media is vital to my business.Social media expands my reach & gives me an opportunity to build relationships via @thecrownfox @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media has played a huge part in growing my business. Its impact has been 2-fold. First, there’s traffic. Pinterest has been my #1 traffic driver recently, and all it took was being consistent. Second, social media has allowed me to meet and collaborate with many other bloggers. I’ve gotten my posts shared, traded guest posts, gotten referred for jobs, and have made online friends that collaborate with me on courses and webinars, all of which help boost my business.
Social media has allowed me to connect with my ideal clients in two huge ways: Facebook & Instagram. All of my clients have come from Facebook groups I am a part of (and active in) as well as referrals within those groups. Instagram is newer for the “business” side of things for me, but I’ve continued to engage and interact with other online entrepreneurs there.
I am looking forward to growing my Instagram in September and adding Pinterest to see where those can take me! The biggest thing for me & social media was this – being social! That’s kind of the whole point isn’t it? I’d encourage others to get out there and just be engaging on a daily basis.I'd encourage others to get out there & be engaging on a daily basis via @thesocialwalker @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Social media has helped me to connect with readers and other writers in a way that I would never be able to do with just email or my website alone. I’ve made some amazing connections and friends because of social media. For every troll or hater on social media you can find at least 5 more supporters if you look in the right places. I think being able to engage and interact with people on social media really helped me figure out what I wanted to do and which direction my business was going.Social media has helped me to connect w/readers in a way that I would never be able to do via @diadoll @brittneyllynn Click To Tweet
Developing a strong personal brand through my blog and social media is the sole reason I was able to quit my PR job in December to take my side-hustle full time. I actually landed my first-ever client by including an article written by a startup founder in a link roundup on my blog and tweeting it to him! That small social media interaction was the catalyst for a business relationship that is still in progress more than three years later.
The majority of my clients tell me they find me through Twitter (the social media site I’m most active on), as well as through my blog. Taking the time to develop a personal brand while building your business is key. People tend to get bogged down in client work and put their own brand on the backburner, but when you make time for both, your business can truly thrive.
Social media has helped me grow a thriving community around my business. When I first started out, I fell under the camp of “promote, promote, promote”, but now I’m all about building relationships and creating connections. My Facebook group is one of my favourite places to hang out online, and it’s really helped create a nurturing, supportive community around my brand. In this day and age, that’s absolutely valuable!
I’ll speak for two of my favourite social media platforms. Pinterest plays a big role as content marketing distribution for my small business, which helps me reach wider audiences apart from the existing readers. Then there is Instagram which brings out my personality through consistent content and increases engagement + conversations with my existing customers and potential customers.
As you can see, social media has been absolutely game-changing for many of these small business owners. In fact, several admit they wouldn’t even have a business if it weren’t for social media!
How do you use social media to grow your business? If you’re looking for more tips on how to use social media to increase your business reach, sign up for my free email course Shape Your Social!
With new social media networks coming out what seems like every other day, it can be easy to get overwhelmed.
“Well I have to be on Facebook because everyone is on Facebook!”
“Might as well throw in Twitter too.”
“Oh, what about Instagram? Yeah, gotta share those filtered pictures to my audience for sure.”
“What’s this Snapchat thing? And Periscope? So I just record myself talking and people will want to see it?”
By the end of the day, you spent all of your time on social media, and zero time actually doing the work required for your business!
My hope is to help ease your mind and explain how not to get overwhelmed managing your social media. Let’s get to it!
Everyone claims that you need to have a “social media strategy” for your business, but what does that mean?
In simple terms, it means answering this question: Why are you doing whatever you’re doing on each social platform? What is your goal of participating on being on a particular platform?
There needs to be a “why” to everything you do for your business and the same goes for social media. Do not be on social media just because “people tell you to.” There needs to be a reason, otherwise you’ll lose motivation to continue engaging.
I’m a big fan of batch scheduling in different facets of my life, but especially with social media.
Yes, I work in social media, so shouldn’t I always be socializing on these platforms? No.
For one, I have to write this blog right? Two, I need to meet and discuss with clients, which also takes time. So even I’M not on social media 24/7.
Here’s what I do:
Each Friday, I look at my calendar for the week ahead. I first notice any social engagements, appointments, meetings, etc.
I then plug in my workouts into my calendar.
Then, I schedule out my work week, scheduling chunks of time to just schedule social media posts or find content to share. I could easily spend hours on social media, but having those chunks of time dedicated helps me remember to save it for then.
Just do it. Nothing monumental will happen, I promise. To get a notification on your phone every time someone likes your Facebook page, or tweets at you is distracting and not doing you any favors.
I check my social platforms around three times a day: 1) once right when I wake up, 2) around lunchtime, 3) before going to bed.
Your audience understands that a human being is responding back to comments on these platforms and they know you might not respond immediately and that’s okay. You’re a small business, not a huge corporation that has 10 team members watching its social platforms.
Yep. I said it. You don’t need to be on every platform as a small business owner. Figure out where your target audience likes to hang out, choose those, and lose the rest.
Having a Twitter page just for the sake of having one but never posting on it does you no good. In fact, I think it actually hurts your business more than if you just didn’t have one in the first place.
I’ll use myself as an example. For growing my business, I’m currently only focusing on building my Pinterest and Twitter accounts. These two are where I’m getting the most value for my time right now, so I don’t promote on Facebook or Instagram.
Now that doesn’t mean eventually I won’t move onto those other platforms, but I’m only taking on what matters most to my business while I’m still building.
Pick one platform that you know your target audience is on. Just one. I know it’s hard to ignore all of those other ones but this will save you time and will also save your sanity.
Why focus on just one? So you can master it.
Have you ever heard of “just in time” learning? It’s this way of learning something right as you need to learn it, versus trying to learn allthethings at one time.
Focusing on one account (ideally, the platform that your audience is on the most) will give you time to learn everything there is to know on how to grow that account and make it sustainable. Once you’ve mastered it, you can move onto the next.
Alright, so you have a strategy, you’ve turned off your notifications, and you’re ready to handle multiple accounts. Now it’s time to automate.
There are many systems out there to automate your social platforms. Some are free, some aren’t. Some only handle certain social accounts.
My best advice is to use what system that works best for your budget and your business. It might take a lot of trial and error but once you find the right match, it will keep you from getting overwhelmed.
If your small business is growing at a rapid pace (awesome job!) then it might be time to outsource some of your social media tasks.
It can be hard to hand over part of your brand to someone new, but it could help grow your brand exponentially if you’re then free to do what you do best in your business.
I’m in several Facebook groups, most relating to freelancing, entrepreneurship and the like. One question I see over and over (and over) again is:
“How do I find time to use social media for my business?”
Time is an interesting thing, isn’t it? It seems like we never have enough of it.
“If I only had more time I would ______”
“If I had an extra hour in the day I could _____”
“Why aren’t there more hours in a day?!”
I’m sure you’ve heard one of these comments before, or maybe you’ve even uttered the phrases yourself.
But here’s the thing. We each only have 24 hours in a day. 168 hours in a week. Time is what you make of it. You make time for the things that matter to you most.
If social media is important to you for growing your business, you will need to make time. Not much, but some time will be needed. There isn’t a magic potion out there that creates more time for social media.
So say you’ve read 168 Hours (great book, by the way), and you’ve figured out you have a little extra time to dedicate to social media, but you aren’t sure where to start. Below are ways I’ve personally implemented that help answering the “where to start with social media when you have zero time” question.
If you are just starting out with social media, you’ll need to do an exercise. You may be asking yourself, “how do I find where my audience hangs out?” Here’s your answer:
First step: Define who your audience is. This means demographically (gender, age, location) as well as their interests (shopping habits, websites they read, blogs they follow, etc). Write this down.
Second step: Follow the same type of websites, Twitter accounts, Facebook groups, and interests that your audience does (and hopefully you already naturally do). You will slowly start to see where these people congregate (Instagram, Facebook groups, Twitter, etc).
Third step: Determine which place your audience hangs out the most and focus only on that social network. You will feel the need to focus on everything at the same time, but ignore this feeling. You’ll get to the other networks eventually. All that matters right now is this first network.
Batch processing is THE best tip I can give you for making the most out of your time. What do I mean when I say batch processing?
Batch processing is setting aside time to complete similar tasks. The term actually derives from a computer language standpoint, where a computer would “batch process” similar “jobs” without human intervention.
My kind of batch processing does involve human intervention (aka YOU :)), but you will be completing similar “jobs” just like a computer would.
Batch processing your social media content helps you laser focus on the task at hand. It can be tempting to try and do a million and one things at the same time (hello multi-tasking!) but in reality, you get a lot less done when you multi-task.
Set aside time each week to schedule your social media posts. Use this time to create posts to promote your blog, business, and website. Zeroing in one this one task will help streamline your marketing efforts, while not sacrificing on posting great content.
Now I’m sure you know by now that you shouldn’t just promote your business on social media, but also to share relevant articles and information from other sources too. Finding and scheduling those also take time, which leads us to number 3.
Do you ever go into your email inbox to check one important email and then look up and realize you spent 3 hours reading the latest blog post from your favorite blogger and about a million of those shopping emails? Yeah, #beenthere.
And those emails can be great, life changing even. But they have a time and place. If you read every email that came in at the time it came in you would get absolutely no work done.
I’ve found the best ways around this is to batch read. Yes, similar to batch processing scheduling your content listed in number 2.
You can set up batch reading in a number of ways, but here are the two that work best for me:
1) Designated email folder
2) Designated blog reader category
For each email list that I sign up for, relating to content I would share on my social platforms, I have them directly go to a designated email folder entitled “Content.” These emails completely surpass my main inbox. I do not ever see them unless I go into the “Content” folder of my email. The idea here is that they are out of site, so I’m not tempted to even begin reading them. I know that at the end of the week, I have the designated time to go through and read each email if I so desire.
Popular blog readers like Bloglovin’ or Feedly have helped me immensely in streamlining social media posts. If you read blogs, but don’t want an email every time a new post is up, a blog reader is an easy solution.
Create a category such as “Content to Share” and add your favorite blogs and websites that have content that is relevant to share with your audience. As listed above, schedule time during your week to go through these blog posts and pick the appropriate articles to share. Resist the urge to read them as soon as they are published. They will be there waiting for you when you’re ready, I promise.
Now here’s where some work needs to happen but it’s worth it for the long haul.
Once you’ve been posting to the social network you’ve been focusing on for a few months (remember, you are focusing on ONE social network), you will need to take a look and see what is working and what doesn’t work.
How do you do this? Well, it depends on the network.
Across all networks, some rules of thumb including looking at the following:
– Time of day posting
– Type of content (is it a photo, video, quote, a personal anecdote?)
So what does “working” mean here? “Working” in this sense means engagement. How many people liked the content? Or even better, commented? Or even better than THAT, shared it?
Take notes on which types of posts get more engagement. Keep those types of posts in your strategy of sharing, while doing a little less of the type of content that gets the least.
Now it’s not to say if sharing a personal anecdote gets you the most comments that you should always share personal anecdotes, but it can be easy to forget what types of posts people like. If you keep these ideas type of mind, it makes it easier for you to schedule out posts that you know your followers will like in advance. Thus saving time, which is what we are looking for.
If you’re ready to move even further, automation is your next step. There are a few free services that will do automation (Hootsuite, Buffer (to an extent), Facebook scheduler) but the best of the best are of the paid variety.
Once you have a solid social media strategy (which you definitely should have before you even think about paying for automation), it might be time to look into automation.
There are tons of programs out there that can help with automating your social media, and this post isn’t about reviewing them (hoping to do that soon!) but know that there won’t ever be a complete “automation” on your end. Even if you hire out for someone else to do your social media, you will need to spend at least some time thinking and reviewing your social media strategy on a routine basis.
Social media isn’t going anywhere, it’s not a phase that will eventually pass. For right now, it’s here to stay, and you might as well embrace it.
If you’re looking for a professional to manage your social media strategy, feel free to contact me so we can discuss your business goals. I’d be happy to help!
Note: There are Amazon Affiliate links in this post. I make a small commission if you click on a link and make a purchase. This is of no additional cost to you. I recommend these products because I support them and have used or had experience with them. I would only recommend products because I think they are useful to you.