Recently a friend did a social experiment on Facebook that seemed to reveal more about her frustrations than social media algorithms. Essentially she grew increasingly frustrated that the social media content she felt was most important was not receiving the interaction she had pre-determined it deserved.
Even if this seems silly, deep down you might also understand her frustration just as I did. Social media can be a very hard thing to figure out. When it comes to promoting your business on social, it can be easy to stress. Are you using the right platforms? Are you posting enough? Are you using the right words? Should you pay to boost a post? Are you reaching everyone you want to reach? It can become easy to let social media drive you crazy if you aren’t getting the answers or responses you think you should have.
It can be very motivating to see the number of people a post has reached. But Facebook is strategic, that “Boost Post” button is highlighted in blue and evenly placed with the statistic for a reason.
Before you pay to boost a post you need to pause and ask yourself “What do I want to accomplish?”. The bottom line on any blog post needs to move beyond seeing how many people had the opportunity to view your work.
It might feel good to see a high number of people who have seen or clicked on a blog post, but it isn’t the right thing to get excited about. It doesn’t matter how many people had access to view your post via social media if they don’t go to your website it’s a false number. If someone clicks on your post but doesn’t stay to read it and engage, that is also not helpful.
The “more views = more business theory” doesn’t always translate. Consider two scenarios.
1- You have a blog post viewed by 1,000 people. Of those views 100 convert to read the blog post and 10 of those people become customers.
2- You have a blog post viewed by 100 people. Of those views 100 convert to read the blog post and 50 of those readers become customers.
Since the ultimate goal for the business is to have customers it doesn’t matter that 900 fewer people viewed your blog post, the second scenario is the one that any business owner would prefer. The first way to stop letting social stress you out is to dig deeper into your analytics and stop concerning yourself with the wrong numbers.
There is only so much time that anyone can realistically spend on social media. Tools like HootSuite or Hubspot can cut down the amount of time you spend scheduling posts. Still, several questions remain.
There is a lot of information out there that tries to answer these questions. Unfortunately, it seems that very few people agree. In reality, there are hundreds of strategies because people explain what worked for them, and the same things won’t work for every person.
As a small business owner, you are being pulled in multiple directions every day. If social media needs to be one of them, then it’s best to be realistic about the amount of time you spend focusing on your strategy. Control the things you can, like avoiding cross-posting, and let go of the areas you can’t control.
The great thing is that after you spend time consistently posting on social media platforms, you will see which ones your clients prefer to engage on, and even what days. This will help you prioritize scheduling and posting.
Another temptation can be to respond quickly if a question comes through via a social media channel. It’s always great to respond when this is possible, but interruptions add up. Dedicating a few minutes at the beginning or end of each day may help you to stay engaged with customers without letting social media capture too much of your attention.
Ultimately, you can only do so much. This might mean delegating social media to someone else. Whatever you decide, you have to give yourself the grace to accept that you are doing what you can to build your business, and social media is just one tool to do so.
If you’ve ever been drawn in by a post promising to help you “gain a thousand followers a day with our proven strategy” you know that there are a lot of details that can be easily overlooked when it comes to social media analytics and scheduling.
Help can come in different ways. There is nothing wrong with inviting your friends on Facebook to like your business or blog page. Hopefully, they are utilizing your skills anyway. Mentioning to friends and family that it would be helpful if they could share a post or retweet something can help friends of your friends see information about your business. This can also act as an endorsement for people. If they see someone they trust sharing about a business it automatically becomes more trustworthy.
Help can also come from a company that specializes in doing the things for your business that aren’t your strengths. Many businesses hire administrative assistants and book keepers. Having a teammate that focuses on your social media content can be a huge burden lifted off your plate. It’s important if you are going to go this route that you find the right person. Someone who will be transparent about the process, listen to your needs and can show you great recommendations from past jobs.
With all your friends helping you don’t forget to be social yourself! Spend a little time commenting on other people’s pages or retweeting a post or two. Do for others what you expect them to do for you.
Businesses require advertising, and social media can provide free pathways to reach new clients. It can also drive you a little nuts if you are focusing on the wrong things or listening to the wrong people. Just like any other business tool, taking the time to figure out the best way to utilize this promotional avenue can be a business win and a sanity keeper.
Ready to get started with social media? Check out these free resources:
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