January 16, 2011

Rachel Strella

Caught in the Fishnet: Six Social Media Pitfalls to Avoid

I recently spoke to the group, ExecConnect PA, about social media maintenance. If applied correctly, you can create a strategy to accompany your social media efforts that takes just 15-30 minutes a day. Most in the group were surprised by this knowledge as they find themselves getting trapped in the fishnet of some common social media pitfalls. I have devised some tips to help with these roadblocks and stay on track with your social media maintenance plan.

Time Zappers. One of the reasons social media gets a bad rap is because many consider it to be too time-consuming. It can be, but there are some “time zappers” to look out for. Try to stay on task – review everything, comment on items that are relevant, and post any content you have. If you see something interesting and want to know more, make a note of it or add it to your favorites tab so you can check back later. Time yourself to be sure you have stayed on task with your allotment and look for ways to continually improve.

Being random. I touched on this a little in my last blog post.  If you log-on, post a bunch, and log-off whenever the mood strikes, you aren’t using social media to your advantage. I bet if I held a meeting, and then held another meeting 10 days later at the same place with the same people, everyone would sit in the same spot as the first meeting. What does this tell us? We are creature of habit, so consistency is essential. Be sure you are adhering to your strategy and try to stick to a rhythm.

Boredom. Don’t comment to comment, and don’t post just to post.  Try to keep posts interesting, compelling and valuable. Be sure that when you respond to a comment you aren’t just hitting the “like” or saying “way to go.” Try contributing something worthwhile to the conversation – you are more likely to stay involved in social media as well as solicit worthy commentary on your content.

Ball-busters. There are people out there who just like to stir the pot and see what they can cook up. They like to bust your chops, because they can and they want to get a reaction out of you. No matter what, stay positive and professional. These people will end up in one of two places: Either becoming your greatest asset because they keep you on your toes or they will eventually go away because they have learned they can’t get your goat.

Trying to be everything to everybody. No one is perfect – including you. Try to focus on what’s important, especially when relaying it on social media. I read dozens of blogs a day that have information that contradicts information from the previous day. I have yet to find a social media ‘god’ so I doubt there’s anyone who gets it just right.  Everyone has an opinion, but go with what you know and believe – it’s your voice!

Changes. Sites like Facebook are changing all the time. Take note and slowly transition yourself into new changes, rather than becoming overwhelmed or spending countless hours messing with the new profile. To help make sense of new changes, turn to experts such as Mari Smith or go to a source such as the Facebook blog.  Even the best of us have trouble understanding what these changes mean, so don’t sweat it – you’re not alone!

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