Does social media and growing your audience make you want to gnash your teeth and cry? It doesn’t have to be horrible! Break it into bitesize tasks and you’ll see progress in no time. Use these tips to find your groove.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a blogger, a crafter, a course creator, if you are trying to improve SEO or sales, you know you need to harness Social Media. But who has time to create daily reels, tik tok videos, respond to comments, snaps, pins, tweets, Facebook conversations, not to mention keep your group active and say show something cool on your page. Wait, and actually interact on all these, too? Sure, if you have nothing else to do in your business. Lol oh but wait, we have a business, too.
So here are my 5 tricks for sanity to try to find a balance between my social media presence and actually having an off-screen life.
- Use a Scheduler
- Use the same content on multiple platforms
- Don’t try to do all the platforms.
- Interacting with people is the most important.
- Be real
Social Media Schedulers are so amazing!
I schedule ahead a couple of ways and I love them all. I can take 30 minutes or an hour and have at least some content ready to post all week long on multiple platforms. Caveat, you can fall into a rabbit hole on some of these and lose a lot of time but almost always they save me time and help SEO on platforms that like consistency (Pinterest and Instagram for example). Most of these are free, though you can upgrade.
- I use a free version. If I paid, I could schedule more in advance.
- This will automatically post to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for me. *However, sometimes Instagram needs an extra step and Buffer sends me a reminder to do this. I really don’t understand why, but I know to check my phone about 11:05 every day as I have it set for 11.
- I began with a free version. Once I was fully taking advantage of that, I moved up to the cheapest paid plan. This allows me to schedule out more, but also gave me more groups (formally called Tribes) that I could join.
- Tailwinds runs the algorithms and decides when the best posting times are for me each day. FANTASTIC, I have neither the skills nor time to do this!
- I can schedule pins to save about two weeks out to my boards.
- I can schedule loops of pins, say my book reviews, to pin over and over again every few months without me having to track or remember. This is called Evergreen Content, by the way. It’s content that is pertinent at any time or season.
- The Communities are great. I can share my pins to the groups for repinning and I find great content in the group to pin to my boards. We share our niche audiences, this way. My homesteading group will already have followers interested in homesteading, my book group will already have followers interested in book reviews, so it’s amazing.
- As far as I know there are no upgrades to this, but only the free service.
- But, the downside is it has to be done on a laptop, not a mobile phone (I don’t know about tablets).
- I use this most for groups such as online craft fairs. I prewrite my fifteen posts that I want spread 3/day over five days. I write it just like a regular post, but instead of posting immediately, I click on the calendar icon, and choose the date and time. I do a few online craft fairs a year so I already have about 10 posts written that I just have to tweak, and create another 5 or so of new items. Scheduling all of these takes less than an hour for the whole event, which means while the event is running I can focus purely on interactions with other vendors and potential sales. It also means if my personal life happens to be a little nuts one day, or my internet service is crappy, my posts still show up to the group.
Same Content, Different Social Media Platforms
It’s not terrible to have the same content on different platforms. Think about how many friends you have that post to Instagram and it automatically posts to Facebook as well. You probably “like” it on each platform, but you probably don’t comment on each platform (unless you are being mindful of the analytics). That’s ok. Now think about how many people only use one platform or another. If you only post to one platform you are missing out on a huge audience, while posting on both has you overlapping a small to medium portion who don’t really care that you overlap. Plus, depending on how many people they follow, they may only see your post once.
Here’s another big component- do you have time to make really striking content for each of your platforms? Often what is click-worthy or interesting on one is going to work in another. Now, going back to schedulers for a moment, I do like that I can change my posts a bit from platform to platform and still use the same general post for all three. I definitely do not have the time to create different posts for all of that.
Pinterest is a little different. I can automatically have all my posts from Instagram onto my Pinterest, but often the posts aren’t really pin worthy so it just becomes like junk mail on my boards. Instead, I wait until I have a cool post on my blog, or a new item in my shop and then I pin directly that way. Also, I take an afternoon (or sometimes a full day) and create a whole bunch of pins for posts that I have done and that I will be publishing soon. I may pin a couple immediately and then spread them through my media scheduler. Once they have pinned once in Pinterest, then I add them to my Tailwind scheduler to be shared with groups, and on different boards of mine. Tailwind is superawesome at this stage because I can set up my evergreen content (applicable any time of the year as opposed to seasonal) to “loop” and repeatedly post over a long time period. You can create seasonal loops, too.
Don’t try to do all the social media platforms.
Start small. Don’t do all the things on all the platforms. You just can’t do it all and do it consistently. Start small, succeed, then expand.
Start where you already have a voice. Maybe take a free workshop to see how to best use the platform. I did a couple that I found helpful for Pinterest. I already had boards and 1000’s of pins, but now my numbers have gone up because I have better organization and SEO.
Do you already hop on Facebook a couple times a day? Post some things about your business. Then take an hour and create a business page. You can share the content you already posted to this page and voila! now you can invite all your friends to it. Create an album and show off your work.
When you’re ready to grow a little, create an Instagram page that mimics your Facebook business page. Now link them so you can post to one and it shares to the other. I often post to Instagram and have it automatically post to Facebook. Two results for one action, gotta love it!
Now do you like posting reels, TikTok videos, etc? TikTok and Snapchat are awesome for you then. See about expanding onto YouTube once you’re grounded.
Keep creating strong content consistently and your followers will organically grow. It can be frustrating, but keep interacting with people, and your numbers will grow faster.
Interacting with people is the most important (you know, be social!).
There is just nothing like building relationships and connections with people. I mean, think about your own desires. Would you rather learn or buy from someone who has treated you like a real person, or some faceless business. Your buyers may even be willing to spend extra, knowing that they are supporting a real person with a real family and tangible goals beyond just padding the wallet.
It’s easy enough to interact and engage with people on social media even if you are an introvert. If someone comments on your post, reply back. Easy, right? Even if it’s just “Thanks for stopping by!” The more comments you have (including yours) help boost you in the algorithm too, meaning more people will see your post. Take it a step further, if they like your post, like some of theirs. It doesn’t take much from you and feels pretty amazing to them.
More importantly, if a person takes the time to send you a message or an email, you must reply back! Best yet, reply back within 24 hours or less. It doesn’t have to be immediately, but quickly. Even if your reply is something to the effect of, “Hey, what a great question! I’m not sure, I’ll have to look into that for you.” Then follow through, but it gives you a greater window of time.
The better your service, the more people will talk about it. The better your service, the more people will recommend you.
It’s not just your buyers that you need to interact with. Network with other sellers and providers. Tag them, share their posts, like their posts. Help boost them and most will return the favor. Moreover, as you build real connections you may also build partnerships and collaborations. If they offer something that you don’t, then definitely recommend them to people. Your people will appreciate your helpfulness, the other business owner will appreciate you helping them.
This one is a no brainer, really. Do you want to follow a real person or staged ads? Sure being real means the post or reel might not be perfect, but it is authentic. A large part of selling yourself or your brand through a screen is helping your audience believe your authenticity. They want to know you are a real person. They want to relate to you (they aren’t perfect either).
When you’re super excited about something – share it. Found a quote or picture that really resonates with you – share it. Tried a new recipe and it was an epic failure – share it. Have a pet peeve – share it. Have a product or service you offer – share it. Received a sweet gift or praise for something – share it. Saw someone being extra kind – share it. Need a break for a few days – share that.
Go ahead and share all these things (but not every day-don’t be overwhelming). Let people get to know how you think, what you value, and what makes you laugh. You want them to get to know you like they get to know a favorite character on a tv series or in a book. Sure, you probably want to keep it mostly positive, and you want to include what you’re selling, but keep it real with some failures or angst, too. This is part of connecting with you. They would rather support a real person, or take a risk with you, than some random company.
What are your best social media tips? What was your greatest success? Let us know!