How To Organize Your Social Media to Avoid Feeling Overwhelmed
Disclaimer: This post falls squarely in the “do as I say, not as I do” category, as keeping organized and on top of my social media is something I struggle with daily. I’m hoping that by actually thinking out loud in this post, I may actually come up with a useful idea or two to help myself.
If you are a business owner who uses social media to market your business, you are most likely aware of what a time-suck it can be. If you don’t have a plan and a way to stay organized it’s very easy to become overwhelmed by it all. It’s definitely something I struggle with on a daily basis, and so probably have no real business even trying to tell you how to do it.
Guess what? I’m going to tell you anyways.
1. Know what your end result is.
Every time I get overwhelmed I think about Stephen Covey and his advice to “Begin with the end in mind.”
If you know what you want to get out of your social media efforts, then it’s a lot easier to find a starting place that works.
So, what are you trying to do?
- Build a mailing list?
- Drive Traffic to your site?
- Sell more products?
- Gather leads?
- Make new connections?
Your end goal will pretty much dictate how you proceed.
For me, when I first started using social media it was as a tool to build my self-confidence. All I wanted to do was make connections and learn to not be afraid to strike up a conversation with someone. Since then my goals have changed, and while I still love making connections and meeting new people, my goal is to turn some of those connections into customers and clients for my products and services.
2. Decide what platforms you will use
You DO NOT have to have a presence on every single social media platform out there. Spending tons of time on a site where your best audience doesn’t is a waste of your time and resources.
Know where your audience hangs out, and develop those platforms first. If you can prioritize where you need to spend most of your energy, it makes it much easier to plan and organize.
3. Know the rules for each platform
Of course, you should know the policies for each social media site you are a part of, but that’s not what I mean by rules.
What I”m talking about here are the posting rules, or maybe trends is a better term, such as:
- how often should you post each day
- what are the best times to post
- what type of content gets the best interaction
Doing a little research and knowing the answers to these questions and how they will help you achieve your goals before you start will make developing your plan that much easier.
4. Create your content plan
Once you know how often you should be posting, and what you should be posting, you can create your content plan.
In a previous post I mentioned that your social networks will stand or fall on the strength of your content.
The biggest part of any social media plan is the content development. There are tools such as Hootsuite and Buffer and a dozen others that can automate the delivery of content for you, but you still need to create and/or curate it.
Here are a few things to consider when creating your social content plan:
- How many blog posts will you create? What days will you post them?
- How many status updates with tips and/or graphics will you post each day? Will you create the graphics or have someone else do it?
- Will you use infographics? Will you create them or share others?
- Are you using Pinterest? How many pins will you add each day?Are you on Twitter?
- How many tweets will you post each day?
Once you have all your content created and have set aside time to either post it live or schedule it,there is one final component. (And admittedly, this is the one where I struggle most. …)
5. Make time to socialize!
It’s much easier to create content and pre-post it all, and never look at your social media accounts again until the next week. But that’s not very social.
To have a successful social media component to your business, you need to include time for actually socializing in your plan. Whether you set aside 15 or 30 minutes once or twice a day, you need to have some clear idea of how you will respond to the people who have interacted with you.
One thing I’ve found that helps is to belong to a couple of social sharing groups. Having a group of people you know you have to interact with on a daily basis keeps you active on at least one platform each day, and if that’s all you can manage it’s a good start.
Putting it all together
So that’s my theory on how an organized social media plan should work. To summarize:
1. Know what you want to achieve through social media
2. Decide what sites you will be active on
3. Know the rules and trends for each site
4. Create your content plan
5. Make time for being social!
Even though it’s work, social media should be fun. By having a plan and staying organized, you can put those feelings of overwhelm to rest once and for all!
How do you organize your social media efforts? Leave a comment and let me know. And if you liked this article, please share!