Social media can be such a distraction to productive behavior. Not to mention there is often so much noise floating through these social channels that it can mess with your peace of mind. There is much more to life than status updates, likes, page counts and followers.
Here are a few alternatives to social media for those of us who feel the constant need to be plugged in to what's going on online:
1. Read a book- Pick up a New York Times bestseller and lose yourself in a great adventure. Or pick a topic that you've wanted to learn like Spanish or crocheting and learn something new. Or if you're an entrepreneur get a business book like Rework to help you find new and inventive ways to grow your business.
2. Listen to music- Put on some relaxing music and meditate or play your favorite upbeat tunes and dance around the house. Music and exercise is an instant mood lifter!
3. Go for a walk- Speaking of exercise, turn off the phone and computer and go for a walk. Getting exercise every day does wonders for your physical and mental health.
4. Write- Even if you aren't a writer, take out a sheet of paper and write down your goals or a to-do list or grocery list. To paraphrase Erykah Badu, "When you write stuff down with a real pen on real paper, it gets real." In a nutshell it helps you feel more connected to your goals.
5. Meet or call a friend for a face to face meeting- Go old school and pick up the telephone and CALL your friends/family or better yet make plans to meet face to face for an actual conversation.
Thanks to everyone who follows me on my social media platforms!! I really enjoy engaging with everyone. If you're not following me, let's fix that! Here's where you can find me:
Facebook: Tracie Momie Creative
I've blogged about the pros and cons of social media before but this post focuses more on the problems with social media.
If you are a brand, social media has to be a part of your marketing strategy. It's the world we live in. But there can be some challenges with relying solely on social media:
1. You must select the right platform. All social media platforms are not created equal. You do not have to be on EVERY platform. Select the platform that will reach your desired target audience and focus on engaging and building a community within that platform.
2. There is a lot of noise and distraction. One of the downfalls of using social media for marketing and promotion is that you get sucked into the never ending social media vortex. You can waste valuable time on social media platforms just looking through posts for inspiration and end up totally off track and forgetting why you logged on in the first place.
3. It is TIME CONSUMING. Noise and distractions aside, it takes time to build a following on social media and post relevant content. This time takes you away from perfecting your product or service. Even with tools like Hootsuite where you can schedule posts, you still have to engage with your followers and you can end up in that vortex I spoke of.
4. It is such a quid pro quo environment. Most people only follow you if you follow them back and while this helps your numbers it doesn't always help your engagement or your sales. I would rather have 100 people who are really interested in what I have to offer than 1,000 people who never like, comment or subscribe!
5. Everybody is a critic! If you have thin skin, social media is NOT for you. No matter how much you lament over a post or try to perfect an entry there will be someone who catches that you placed a comma in the wrong place or they will fact check you. Or worse they will offer up nothing constructive and just complain that they don't like your post (or you). This can take away from your message and cause people to question your credibility,
To minimize these issues you just need to determine what platform will work best for you, post consistently and work on delivering quality content.
Social media is, my opinion, one of the best and worst things created this century yet it has become a necessary tool for every entrepreneur. However it can be a distracting, time consuming, productivity thief!
I dare anyone to tell me that they haven't gone on Instagram or Facebook with the intention of posting something or checking in and an hour (or two) later you're pages deep into an abyss of status updates! And don't get me started on the latest blogger/entrepreneur obsession: PERISCOPE!
We tell ourselves that it's not a waste of time because we're gathering all of this information to actually help our businesses grow but guess what. . . .at the rate you're going you'll never have time to implement all these tips or research the countless resources being shared. Why? Because you're watching Scopes all day or on Facebook forums getting said information! It's truly a vicious cycle!
I've started a social media regime that has really been beneficial to me with regards to productivity:
1. Schedule. Schedule. Schedule.- This one is the oldest trick in the book but I swear by it. I schedule Facebook posts and blog posts everyday (or every other day) this is a big time saver. I actually schedule my Facebook posts directly from the Facebook Pages app. I typically do all my scheduling for the week on Sunday evening.
2. 3, 5, 7 Rule- I use this when scrolling through social media. I scroll through at least 7 posts on my feeds, like at least 5 and comment on at least 3. If there is something that really catches my eye I might adjust these numbers. I usually do this during lunch, or while waiting in line somewhere, or at the doctors office etc. I also try and do it a couple of times a day, so I don't miss too much but once I hit my quota, I log out.
3. Team #IDontFollowBackEverybody- I'm sorry but I just cannot do this. You miss out on notifications from people you really want to connect with or events you really want to know about when you're following 1,000 people!
4. Screenshot for Later- If I see an event or website or quote or book I want to read, I screenshot it on my phone for later. This works for me because I take a lot of pictures and I'm constantly being warned about space on my phone, so I have no choice but to go in and transfer those screenshots to my Evernote resources list or bookmark the websites.
What are some of your tried and true social media tips?
Join me on Instagram (@mzm40) with my lovely cohost Drea (@sodrewrites) as we host our first ever Instagram Photo Challenge! This one is for all the book lovers! Using the prompts above, post a photo each day based on the prompt. On the days in RED you will post a book of your choice with the item shown, for example "Book & Beverage" it can be a copy of any book and a cup of coffee or bottle water or wine, etc. It's your choice on those days.
Be sure to use the hashtag #wearebookedphotochallenge on your posts so we can see your photo's!
We are also having a giveaway for people who participate in the challenge. You don't have to participate every single day but you must participate for most of the challenge for a chance to win. The prize is a $25 gift eGift card to Barnes & Noble!! To officially enter the giveaway follow the instructions below:
Writer. Reader. Designer. Creative Spirit.
“I would advise anyone who aspires to a writing career that before developing his talent he would be wise to develop a thick hide.”