By Rebecca Tichbon
Social media is a must for marketing and keeping in contact with clients these days. However, it can also be a time killer! I can get dragged into scrolling through Facebook. I spend time creating content to post across the different platforms I use. And sometimes I get sucked into conversations that really end up a waste of my day.
Another thing I have found is that using social media for business has kinda drained the fun out of its use. Facebook and Instagram are my business tools, and I no longer have time for checking out my friends’ posts. I have had to tell my friends that they need to tag me if they want me to see something that they have shared, otherwise I just won’t see it. I don’t want them to think I’m ignoring them. I seem to be on social media all of the time, but it’s not very social!
One way social media has hindered me in business is by hurting my self confidence. Everyone knows that can happen when interacting online. People can be nasty on Facebook, you can get trolled, or when you see everyone else having a fabulous time and you’re left out you can feel disheartened. How it affects the ‘business’ me is that I can see what others are doing in their businesses and I feel like I’m not achieving enough. Perhaps they are posting a new great idea – one which I had had myself but hadn’t had chance to implement yet. Sometimes the business I’m reading about is doing something similar to mine and I feel like giving up because it is too competitive.
Here are some things I have found useful when dealing with these issues.
- Limit time spent on social media. Of course I can’t totally let it slide, as it is an important part of marketing my business. However, my business is not likely to fold if I take an afternoon away from social media! I schedule in when I’m going to work on social media, and plan what it is I’m aiming to achieve so as to maintain focus on the tasks to be done. I try to schedule time when I know my social media is going to be active so that I am being effective. I can reply to comments in a reasonable timeframe if I am watching around the time when the majority of my clients are online.
- Turn off the internet to prevent distraction. It is so easy to be distracted when using social media, and BAM, another hour has flipped by. I turn the mobile data off on my phone during times when getting distracted by social media is going to be counter-productive and a procrastination. I close all browser windows and my email accounts when working on my computer if I need to focus on the task at hand. I hide my iPad!
- Write down good stuff about myself and my business, and get others to back me up, too. I keep my business statement handy to remind myself of what I’m about. If you don’t have one – go create one! I try to remember to ask for testimonials from my clients so I can have some positive feedback to reflect on. I check out my reviews on social media. I talk to my hubby, family and friends when I’m feeling down or frustrated in my business as well as in life in general. I have a group of like-minded business women I meet with who are excellent sounding boards. Perhaps a business coach or mentor could be a good idea. I have to remind myself that asking for support is not a failure, it’s a necessity! Sometimes I reflect that everyone has their struggles in business, and what they post about on social media may only be the good bits! I have good bits to share too, and I am doing my best. If someone has the same idea as me – great! That probably means it was a good idea to start with. There is room in the market for competition, and I have to have the confidence that because I work hard and do things well, I will achieve what I set out to do. My personal touch to what I do will make me different from the crowd, and I do my own thing.