Get Out of Social Media Overwhelm

Do you have Social Media Overwhelm? Seems that every week there is a new social media site – Twitter, Friendfeed, Facebook, Linked In… How do you keep up?  Are they all really necessary for me?  Do I need to compete on all these sites?  Are these sites more for kids or do I need to be on them?

These are questions that I get asked often. For most business owners who I engage with in conversation or coaching, they are overwhelmed by the idea that they now HAVE to use Twitter or Facebook.  What they see is an extraordinary amount of content being shot in their retinas and ears drums.  They are afraid that the excess time it takes and amount content might take away from their current lifestyle and family.  Even worse, I’ve also polled some entrepreneurs who are afraid that deep down it could impact their health.

How do they proceed, they ask me?  We’ll there is no need to be afraid of Social Media if you enter it with the right frame of mind and incorporate some basic planning.

Here are the steps that I give my clients.  I may update this post if I think of something else.

1. Ask yourself, what’s my end result of using these sites?  Clarify your intention.

2. Identify who your customer is.  What’s their age range?  Where else do they shop off line and online?  For an idea of demographics and geographics, check out results of either yourself or your customers on either quantcast.com, compete.com or Google Insights.

3. Ask your customers which Social Media sites they use regulary ? Very simply, give them a survey to fill out.

4. Then see if your competitor’s customers are using hose sites to connect with your competitor.  That will gives them an idea of which Social Media sites to look at.

For a list of possible Social Media sites, go to the aggregator Friendfeed and scroll down the list.  More than likely, you’re only interested in a handful of these site such as Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.  If you are in Europe or Asia, there may be more popular platforms local to you.

5. Systematize your Social Media experience.  As you plan your week, set up 30 to 50 minute focus sessions where you specifically set time to either set up your profile and market yourself.  I recommend using a count-down time.  When the clock gets down to 5 minutes, know that you have 5 minutes to complete and that’s it.  Review Parkinson’s law.  The more time you have, the more time you take.

6. Write a procedure or checklist of what you’ll be doing during those focus sessions.  It doesn’t have to be perfect. Just do your best to be consistent with the time each week.  I also recommend setting up a document with the basic answers to what goes into a profile, such as hobbies and interests…  You can transfer this material to other Social Media sites of interest.

7. Continuously look at ways to Simplify your experience.  What and who can you leverage?  Perhaps you can outsource part of the process.  I’ll cover some simplification strategies in my next post.

Most importantly, learn to relax and have fun with the process.  The more you make it a chore, the less enjoyable your weekly social media experience and focus sessions will be.

If you want support or outsourcing recommendations, book a 20 minute session with me here at Process to Profit.  I’ll be glad to give you a head start.

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Internet Marketing Strategist and Process Management Consultant