Do you find social media time consuming for business?
If you feel that you are wasting a lot of time on social media when you are trying to use it for business purposes, don’t despair. You have just fallen victim to the evil intention of social media and you are not alone. The good news is that I am here to help!
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Why Social Media Is Time Consuming For Business

In case you hadn’t noticed, social media is actually designed to be a time suck. It is designed to drag you down one never ending rabbit hole after another. You click on a link in Facebook and then you will get a list of other suggested articles that you might be interested in. You click on a Pin in Pinterest and then you can see all the related pins right there.
The more time you spend on social media, the better it is for the platform, as you are more likely to be exposed to their revenue earning opportunities in the form of advertising. Your activities are also better informing the platform about your interests and behaviours so that the advertising they serve up to you is even more precisely targeted. As a result, you are then more likely to click through and convert to customers for their paid advertisers. This brings their advertisers more success and then they choose to spend more money on advertising. Can you see the vicious cycle of their evil plot?
This is great if you are one of those businesses reaping the rewards by gaining targeted leads and customers via social media advertising, but not so great if you are on there for business purposes and getting sucked into the social media time vortex. This is why you need to be really strategic, planned and disciplined with your approach to social media usage for business purposes, ensuring you are spending the majority of your allocated “work” time on social media working toward achieving your overall business goals.
So let’s get strategic…

Strategic Use Of Social Media Time For Business

Basically, there are three main activities you should be undertaking when using social media for business purposes and they are:

  1. Sharing engaging content with your audience via your social media accounts and the other places your audience is hanging out.
  2. Engaging with those that respond to your content and keeping the conversation going where appropriate.
  3. Listening to your audience to determine what content they are most likely to engage with and actively engaging with content shared by other people.

Keeping this in mind, there are three distinctly different blocks of time you need to allocate to ensure you are being pro-active in making the time you spend on social media most efficient and effective.

Pro-active Social Media Time

The first block of time you need to schedule into your calendar at regular intervals is pro-active social media time. This means putting aside time for planning, developing, sourcing and scheduling content. This might be quite significant initially as you are setting up your presence, building your audience and getting into the groove of sourcing and creating engaging content for sharing, but as you become more proficient in these activities, the time you allocate to this can be broken down into smaller chunks each week.
The amount of time this is going to take will largely depend upon the amount of time it takes you to create and source appropriate content to share. For example, a blog post can take me anywhere from 30mins for the most basic, right through to a full day for those more comprehensive posts that require a lot of research and development of unique images.
As a starting guide, you might want to allocate two hours per blog post, one hour per week to write status updates and 30mins per week for scheduling. In addition to this, you might allocate an extra couple of hours per month for more audience development activities, general planning and analysis. The bottom line is that you need to determine what is an appropriate amount of time for you to invest in these activities in order to see a positive return on your investment and then work within that and adjust as necessary.

Real-time Social Media Engagement Time

The next group of social media activities you need to schedule time for are real-time engagement activities. In other words, you need to allocate time to be present on social media.
This is when you spend time either listening, real-time posting or responding to those that engage with you via social media. Depending upon how active your social media accounts are, you might set aside one or two times each day when you spend 5-10 minutes checking your notifications, responding accordingly and then perhaps performing a couple of additional targeted engagement activities, such as reaching out to an industry influencer or sharing someone else’s content.
In addition to this, you may perform real-time engagement activities that are not scheduled, such as a quick post at an event your are conducting or engaging with others via social media to pass the time whilst travelling on the train between meetings. The key here is to make these kinds of activities “bonus” extras gained through down-time, rather than always relying on down-time to perform real-time engagement. The reason for this is that you are no doubt a busy person and if you haven’t scheduled any real-time engagement opportunities into your day, then there is always the chance that they won’t happen and your level of social media success will decrease as a result.

Social Media Consumption Time

The third and final block of time you need to allocate is for the consumption of social media. This is when you allow yourself to be pulled down the rabbit hole (to some extent), clicking on links and consuming the content that is relevant to your business.
The amount of time you spend doing this is going to depend upon how good social media is as a resource for providing relevant information for your industry or business. Regardless, I would still suggest setting aside time for consuming content via whatever your best information source is. For me, this also includes reading my favourite industry blogs, watching educational videos, catching up on any recorded webinars I may have signed up to and listening to podcasts from industry experts.
The key here is to make sure that you reserve this “work” social media consumption time for “work” purposes only.
You can then allocate as much of your personal time as you want for the consumption of social media for personal usage. Outside of dedicated “work” time is when you should enjoy being pulled down rabbit hole after rabbit hole chasing videos of cats, stalking photos of your X’s new partner and rolling your eyes at yet another photo of what your best friend had for breakfast – all guilt free!

Social Media Strategy

One of the main reasons people fall victim to the social media time suck when they are trying to use social media for business purposes is because they don’t have an effective social media strategy.
If you are active on social media for your business, posting regularly, engaging in the conversation, but not quite getting the results you were expecting, then you should check out Social Media Success.

Schedule Business Social Media Time

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So what do you do with these insights? You have two choices. Click on some of the links on my website and get sucked into all the wonderful rabbit holes worth of awesome content that I have for you. Or open up your calendar and start allocating time each week to undertake your pro-active social media time, real-time social media engagement time and social media consumption time.
But before you do go, please jump down this one rabbit hole and check out the Social Media Success online training program, which is jammed back full of strategic social media advice and activities to assist you in achieving social media success for your business.