by Edie Melson @EdieMelson
[republished with permission. And be sure to check out my post today on Edie’s blog, The Write Conversation. ~Molly Jo]
I get a lot of emails and phone calls from people who really believe social media doesn’t work for them. They’ve convinced themselves that they are the exception to the rule. And because of that, they’re somehow exempt from having an online presence.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s called an exception because it rarely ever happens. Actually I’ve NEVER seen an instance where it was true. But I’m skeptical about absolutes, so I’ll grant that there might be one single person out there that social media doesn’t work for.
The rest of you need to quit claiming it doesn’t work and get busy working it.
First, there’s the person who has really tried to make it work, but they’ve been trying all the wrong things. Doing it wrong won’t get you much further than not doing it at all.
Second, there’s the person who’s been paralyzed by over-thinking the process. They’ve spent so much time analyzing every possible scenario they’re confused and defeated before they ever start.
Third, there’s the person who starts and stops. They work at it consistently for a week or two then stop. Then start again . . . then stop . . . . I think you get the idea. A big part of social media is building on success. If you keep stopping, there’s nothing to build on.
Fourth, there’s the go-getter that’s spending so much time on social media they no longer have time to write. So they throw up their hands and walk away.
- Start a blog or become a part of a group blog.
- Have a presence on Facebook.
- Have a presence on Twitter.
- Utilize a scheduling program (like Hootsuite) to help manage your time efficiently.
- Never break Edie’s five-to-one rule. For every five social media updates on a particular platform, you may only post one additional update about yourself or your product (this includes your books, a blog post, or an announcement about a guest blog post you’re doing).
- Quit overthinking the process. Social media isn’t a science. It’s relationships, and relationships are messy. So get busy, take a chance and find what works for you by DOING, not THINKING!
I recommend you start with the following minimum goals and work up from here:
- Blog once a week, if it’s your personal blog. Blog twice a month if it’s a group blog.
- Comment on a minimum of one other blog once a day, four days a week.
- Post on Facebook a minimum of three times a day, four days a week.
- Comment on someone else’s Facebook post a minimum of three times a day, four days a week.
- Tweet a minimum of four to six times a day, four days a week. (This can include retweeting something someone else has tweeted).
But no matter what you do with social media . . .
Don’t spend more than 20-30 minutes per day on social media.
Spend more than 20-30 minutes a day on social media and you’ll run into the law of diminishing returns. You just don’t get as much bang for your buck. Beyond that, you’ll be cutting into valuable writing time.
What things are standing in your way with social media?
Find your voice, live your story…is the foundation of Edie Melson’s message, no matter if she’s addressing parents, military families or writers. As an author, blogger, and speaker she’s encouraged and challenged audiences across the country and around the world. Connect with her on her blog and through Twitter and Facebook.You can also connect with Edie through Twitter and Facebook.