Social Bloody Media
There is so much advice out there on how you should run your business, particularly about the use of social media - here’s my take on it…
When I’m told I should do something, it makes me not want to do it. I know that’s just plain dumb - but I think I’m suffering from digital advice overload and starting to rebel.
A few months ago, after feeling a lot of pressure to conform I tried to be more active on Facebook. I think I read an article that suggested you should be updating it at least 3 times a week – so I scheduled it – but when it came time, I never felt like doing it. So to fill in the blanks, I’d post a pic of a product because, quite frankly I wasn’t in the mood to be social. I quickly noticed a decline in my likes… I was a little confused – I was doing what I was supposed to be and posting more – but I felt I was losing my connection with my LQ fans.
I lost momentum…
So the theory goes - offer something of value to your readers. I kind thought they were clever boxes…entertaining at the least. But they weren’t working and I eventually lost interest and went back to my unsocial self. I had started to focus my efforts more towards networking and getting corporate exposure for my products and I lost momentum with whole the Facebook platform.
I remember talking to someone at Zizi’s daycare (aka Xiana – my daughter)… she asked me how business was…and mentioned she hadn’t heard much from me on Facebook…I thought WOW…perceptions really are everything…interesting. I did know this…but when someone point blank judges the health of your business based on the number facebook posts, it has more weight!… BTW thanks for the wake-up call Miss Amy.
People can smell a rat
At this point I hated everything social media - I was sick of hearing about it and what Ishouldbe doing with it and all the success everyone else seem to be having. Admittedly I hadn’t touched Pinterest, I had thirty connections on Linked In, Twitter hadn’t heard a cheep out of me for ages and Instagram – yeah maybe once in a blue moon. But how the hell was I going to manage all of these if I couldn’t even get Facebook right?
I was lucky to get a great article from my good friend Pete – it contained a link about sales approaches for consultants/coaches – I was neither, but apparently if you use the wrong style, people can smell a rat – they know when you’re all about the hard sell and aren’t being true to yourself. That’s what I was doing… reading all these bloody articles about how I SHOULD do things, and it just felt so forced and unnatural – people could tell and responded accordingly (which was no response at all).
What I discovered… token but - dance like no one’s watching
You’ve all heard this line *yawn…but it’s the best way to sum up the approach I’m taking with social media. I’m starting to enjoy it! I’ve stopped doing things just to get likes (yes, it’s nice ego bump when you do) but simply posting because I have something to share - whether it be product or culture related - or whatever.
I’m also starting to post on different platforms depending on what I want to say – because each platform has a different tone or way of communicating – kind of like an email vs a brochure – pick the one that best communicates your message. This wasn’t a new realisation for me but truly ‘getting it’ and knowing how to apply with regards to La’Quar certainly was. I admit, I’m not using all social media avenues yet but at least it’s growing organically.
So here’s what I’ve started to do -
Pinterest– this is our LEGIT ideas board – not a fake board for looks – it really is our ideas board. It showcases our work in progress, the crazy stuff we try and possibly fail at – stuff we find inspiring - so we can REALLY draw inspiration from it. People might start to follow-it…great…if they don’t…it’s not the end of the world because we now have a place to collate our ideas. It’s going to be really valuable to us – and as it grows with content – it might be helpful to you too at some point or not.
I’m not going to ‘quickly’ go fill it up either, just so it looks like we’re on top of it – that would defeat the purpose of it truly being our ideas board. Quality rather than quantity I say.
Facebook– I enjoy posting on Facebook now because I can simply be myself – it’s informal and I don’t have to ‘act super professional’ – it’s just great way to converse with my LQ lovers. I now ‘naturally’ seem to do small but regular posts about all different things. Collectively I get enough likes to keep the ‘people talking about this’ above 20 - which is much better than before - and it doesn’t take much effort either. They get to know me and I get to know them – they’re genuine and I love them to bits…not JUST because they like LQ but because they’re awesome people – and if they lived down the road from me, I’d be catching up for coffee. But since we don’t…this is next best thing.
Instagram– I see this as the visual version of Facebook. I do get on Instagram to stalk other people quite regularly – it’s a nice departure from words. I use it casually not religiously – it gives a better insight into my personal life more than anything else – I call it more La’Quar outside of office hours. And I see it as a nice little record of moments in my life that I might like to look back on one day.
Linkedin– Now when it comes to networking, I love nothing more than ‘not’ being the corporate kind. So until now I felt Linkedin sucked out my soul to live… bit like telling the ‘it’ girl Pip Edwards she’s not allowed to look ‘street’ anymore.
Truth is, there’s a solid academic/theoretical reason why La’Quar products work in business to create stronger emotional connections with stakeholders. It also gives me direct access to an audience that would really benefit from hearing the why. I was being stupid in thinking I was too cool for this platform. This is where I’m off to next.
Twitter & Snapchat…ok uncharted territories but I look forward to exploring their potential.
This Blog– I see this as a mashup of Facebook and linked-in. I can talk about business issues that are affecting me, informally, and as in depth as I want – but nobody HAS to listen. It just gives me freedom to work through things that are going on in my head - it’s a bonus if I hear from others that are going through the same things as I am.
Sum it up…and how’s it all working?
Marketing these avenues is not top priority at this point as I’ve only just started to build each platform. But I’ve learned that social media posts that come from the heart work best for me. I think If you have something of value to say, you need to find ‘your’ way of saying it – so it’s genuine – and I think people really appreciate that.
I’m sure I’d get arguments from big businesses that I’m missing the plot and it’s all about ROI – but I don’t have a proven way of doing anything yet, I’m too small - I’m learning, discovering and just concentrating on makingsomethinghappen - and it seems to flow better when I enjoy the journey that goes along with it.
Over and out