Monday, January 23, 2017

2 Objections that Hold Us Back from Winning at Social Media

Edie here and I'm super excited to introduce you to our newest columnist here on The Write Conversation. Bethany Jett is a respected professional in the publishing industry and a whiz at social media. She's also a close friend of mine, as well as one of our conference assistants at The Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writes Conference. Be sure to give her a warm welcome!

2 Objections that Hold Us Back from Winning at Social Media
by Bethany Jett @BetJett

I’m obsessed with Gary Vaynerchuk these days. This past weekend, I devoured two-and-a-half of his books on social media and marketing. Gary Vee, as he’s known in his online circles, owns VaynerMedia, which was listed as a Fortune 500 company and CNN voted him as “one of the top twenty-five investors in Twitter.” He’s kinda cool.

What I love about his books is his focus on story-telling and creating content for your audience. As a writer, that hit me hard. Stories sell. Stories connect. We must tell stories well.
But social media can feel like foreign soil sometimes. There is a lot to learn in this online world that constantly ebbs and flows; a fickle partner in a long-term relationship. However, there are two major objections that stand in our way of ever really getting started with social media in a significant manner.

1. I’m not big enough.
On page 187 of #AskGaryVee: One Entrepreneur’s Take on Leadership, Social Media, and Self-Awareness, Gary says, “I define an influencer as anybody with a public social profile. That’s it. If you have forty-two people following you, then you are influencing them with your content.”

I loooooove this!! I’ve heard the same idea in relation to the word “expert.” Some people get all crazy out-of-whack if you call yourself an expert. The best definition I’ve ever heard is this: “An expert just means you know more than the person next to you.” With that definition, everyone has the opportunity to be an expert in something for someone else. It’s our responsibility to teach as we go! With that last jab, I’ll get off my soapbox before I start ranting.

Back to influence.

You have some.

You may have a little; you may have a lot. Do you have one friend on Facebook? Ten? Forty-two? Hundreds? The only people for whom that number really matters are the publishing houses, and yet even your friends list on Facebook isn’t a clear representation of your level of influence.

Let’s stop looking at the number of friends, followers, and likes, because after all, who are we comparing ourselves to? Someone with 50,000 Twitter followers seems like an amazing influencer—and that type of reach is awesome, for sure. But a common thread in Gary Vee’s books are to focus on building deep instead of wide.

Engagement is key, and that’s the analytic that matters most to me. How many people liked an Instagram post isn’t as important as how many people took a second to comment. What percentage of followers felt inclined to share my content with their friends? That’s a true measure of winning with social.

And we win when we share great stories, our own, and that of others.
This brings me to the second objection:

2. I’m not successful enough.
Let’s rename success here. What does winning look like to you? This is seriously the most important question you can ask yourself before you flounder around in the social media platforms and then find yourself drowning in a sea of overwhelm.

Winning with social media is going to look different for everyone. I recently saw a thread on Facebook about writing goals and many of the answers were the same: “being obedient to God and give Him the glory.”

Yes! That’s why we write! That’s also why Christian doctors practice medicine, Christian lawyers practice law, and Christian professors teach.

I hope that giving honor to God with our writing careers is at the foundation of who we are and what we do, but if we’re striving to honor God, doesn’t that mean we go after our passions with vigor? We strive to produce excellence. We win.

This journey looks different for all of us.

Some of us want to record our family stories or memoirs to share with family and friends. These precious writings are priceless for our loved ones and should be preserved. I wish I had more documentation from my grandparents. It’s fun to think that all the selfies, group-ies, and Instagram feeds are self-preserving the daily activities of (and for) future generations.

My kids will remember almost every day of their lives! Ha!!

To go to other side of the spectrum, some of us want to write the great American novel or hit a best-seller’s list. There is nothing wrong with this dream. If you feel this urge in your heart, work harder than everyone else, learn your craft, and hustle like crazy.

Either way, you need to take a good look at where you want to take your writing, which will determine how gangbusters you hit your social media accounts.

I’m excited to deep dive into the different social media platforms. Interesting things are happening online. The powerhouse we know as Twitter is floundering[1] and Instagram is growing like crazy.[2]

The world has shifted to a virtual reality where BFFs can spend more time with each other via text and Facebook than in-person and collaborative books are written by people who have never met in real life (shameless plug for Through the Eyes of Hope).

No matter what winning looks like to you, let’s meet our audience’s needs, serve them well with great stories that edify and encourage, and continue to bring God glory with our work. 


2 Objections that hold us back from winning at #SocialMedia - @BetJett (Click to Tweet)

Bethany Jett is an award-winning author of The Cinderella Rule, speaker, ghostwriter, and founder of JETTsetter Ink, a consulting and editing company. She has written for numerous publications, created the My Moments Planner, Serious Writer Companion, and is the founder of Serious Writer Academy and the Build Your Brand Program. Her newest work, Through the Eyes of Hope is now available online and in retailers nationwide.

Bethany is a military wife and all-boys-mama who is addicted to suspense novels and all things girly. She writes on living a brilliant life at Connect with her on FacebookPinterest,  Instagram (new profile)LinkedIn, and Twitter.


  1. Thanks, Bethany. As always, you bring a fresh, vibrant point of view to the world of social media. I love that your enthusiasm bursts through your words and encourage me to press on. Welcome to the TWC family.

    1. Thanks Bruce!! You are in my prayers, friend!!!!!

  2. You encouraged me today Bethany just when I needed it! Thank you! I am working on building deep.

    1. Thanks Danetta! I think deep is better than wide. SO glad it was encouraging!

  3. Thank you for the warm welcome, Edie!! Thrilled to be a columnist here!

  4. Thank you Bethany. I needed to read this today. God has a way of putting things on our path when we need them.

  5. This is a huge encouragement for me, Bethany, as someone whose social presence is very small. Redefining success is very important, I think. Thanks! :)

  6. Thanks for this encouragement, friend! Just wonderful!