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Dear Agony Aunt
Lately, there’ve been some negative things circulating around about a great friend mine – Social Media. People announcing they’re going to shut down a 3000 strong Facebook group (where’s that love gone?) or posts about leaving Facebook altogether (after having been together for years!). Dumping Snapchat for Instagram stories (while Instagram’s Shadow Banning doesn’t show pictures to people depending on what hashtags are used). In the midst of all this; my social barometer, Gary Vaynerchuk, says it’s just the state of the internet right now and that Social Media IS the internet. What should I do? Please help – Disillusioned User.
A lot of people blame the platform or the people in their group. They say things like, “there’s nothing happening in the group and no ones engaged” (not the wedding kind). But what if I told you it’s not the platform it’s YOU.
I want you to think about turning the tables on yourself and honestly answering these questions:
- Have you been consistent on Social Media?
- Are you being genuine in your groups?
- Are you creating relationships with people and are you adding value?
- Do people feel like they know each other in your group?
- Do any of the people in your group know each other in real life?
- If you have a Facebook group do you have any in-person meetings? (I find that meeting people face to face makes a huge difference).
It really does depend on the platform and where your heart and soul lies. Where you feel creative and where you feel called to. Is it Instagram or is it Twitter? Some people have said that Twitter has died, but I’ve recently booked an amazing new client who’s got 70k Twitter followers (and that’s where she gets most of her clients). On Twitter she’s consistent, she’s motivational and she’s attracting the right clients.
Be platform polyamorous
Remember my social barometer Gary V. He’s on all the platforms! Linkedin, Medium, blogging, his email list, Instagram, Instagram live, Instagram stories, Facebook, Facebook live and Youtube. He’s everywhere and he’s always testing the platforms. He’ll nip, tuck, adjust, change and adapt. It’s all about keeping the eyeballs on your content.
No more lonely hearts – bring the love to you
Think about how you can grow your own platform. Invest in your own WordPress website, where you can blog regularly and use your website as the grounding area. That’s the place you want people to go to (your blog and your website) when they think of you and they want to see your latest stuff. Then you can use that content across your Social Media. You can make videos and put them on Youtube (which is the second largest search engine in the world, after Google). Take clips from your video and put them on Instagram. Post your videos on Facebook. (Facebook likes native video in its own platform). It’s all about connecting back to the piece of pillar content that you create which is on your blog. That way it’s your platform and you own it.
Get to know each other
Build up your email list and really nurture those people by contacting them often (write a nice newsletter once a week). Share your life and story with them. Encourage them to follow you on Instagram or join your Facebook group where you can be more regular (like on a daily basis). What it comes back to is – where do you want to spend your time and how can you create content that’s easily shared across Social Media (I don’t want you feeling like you’re on Social Media all day long, trying to post here there and everywhere).
Make-up not break-up
Ask yourself the question, “how am I being on this platform or how am I being in my group?”.
Are you automating your posts (people can sniff that from a mile off). There’s nothing wrong with automating a certain amount of content, BUT, you also need to be present and real in the group (beware of the recycled Monday Motivation, Transformation Tuesday, Wayback Wednesday blah blah blah). People get bored and leave. It’s not real, it’s not authentic, it’s not genuine. People are really looking for a personal, human connection (like the good old days in a networking space). Also, remember that you don’t own any of these Social Media platforms (and platforms comes and go) so pick two or three main platforms and concentrate on those in the beginning. Then as your business grow’s get some help with spreading your content across Social Media (even try out some new platforms, so you don’t miss any opportunities).
My dear Disillusioned User, the answer to your heartfelt question is that you need to be everywhere. You need to test, tweak and analyse to see where you’re getting the most views and engagement. Then put even more of your time into that place. Hope this helps, Agony Aunt.
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Chanelle is a business coach/consultant and personal branding specialist with over 20 years of experience. She's been featured in Forbes, Thrive Global, Stylist Magazine and COACH Magazine. She runs a global training business and works with women helping them launch, grow and scale their online businesses and create a freedom-based life through entrepreneurship.