|A hummingbird is hard to keep up with|
At this time there are somewhere between 40 and 60 social media platforms and networks. I say approximately because counting them is about as hard as numbering a charm (flock) of humming birds. And they come and go almost as quickly.
Trying to chase down and join all the networks is not only impossible, it’s completely counterproductive. As writers, we need to remember the purpose of social networking, and it’s not to make a career as a marketer. It’s the means to an end—actually a couple of ends. We want to connect with our audience, and with other industry professionals.
|Blogging, Facebook, & Twitter|
To that end, there are three things I’ve found productive in almost one hundred percent of situations.
In my opinion, those are the only three mandatory things a writer needs to do to have a valuable presence on the Internet. As you’ve read, I have a couple of other networks I enjoy hanging out on and find valuable, Google Plus and Pinterest. This doesn’t mean those will be valuable for you. I have several friends who find LinkedIn valuable and it has never been so for me.
I spend approximately 30-45 every morning scheduling my main social media updates. Here are some of the things I post:
- Links to blogs I think my followers will find helpful.
- Shout-outs about successes of others have.
- Questions that start a conversation.
- Quotes I find funny, poignant, or inspiring.
|Social Media is critical for a successful|
I also follow my five to one rule. For every one update about me, I schedule five about someone or something else. With this, my social media presence never becomes all about self-promotion.
I do all this through Hootsuite. Here's a post on Why I Use Hootsuite. After I finish scheduling everything, I minimize my Hootsuite window and begin work. Throughout the day I'll pull up my Hootsuite account and take a quick peek. Here's what I'm looking for:
- Mentions of my name or my blog (so I can thank the person who mentioned me).
- Interesting articles or blog posts that I can repost to my followers.
- Successes of friends and business associates so I can congratulate them and spread the good news.
- Other things I find interesting.
I just take quick looks all day long, spending maybe five to ten minutes at a stretch.
This method of handling social media has proved successful beyond what I ever imagined. When I do this every day, I can count on adding 15-25 new followers every day. And, even more importantly, I'm not cutting into my valuable writing time.
Now I'd like to hear from you. How do you handle social media? Do you have a plan or is it just hit and miss?
Don't forget to join the conversation!