Writing this blog has me scared. The fear of what to say, how to say it, do I actually have anything to say and what will people say about it. I’ve been out of school for over 18 years now. The most creative things that I’ve written in the last decade have been e-mails! Most of those have revolved around getting details for meetings, conferences or social events – not too scary. Their answers might scare me sometimes, but that I can deal with:) As I read our lessons and search online, I see that I’m not alone in my fear of social media. In fact, there are several people and companies out there that have a fear of social media too.
There are several anxieties to contend with, here are some of the top ones:
– What sites to be involved with?
– How to manage all the sites? (this is a hard one for me – you could be managing all day! Who has time for that?)
– What content to post and how to say it to get an audience?
– Feedback (this is one of my fears too! People are not always constructive with their response so it can come across as an attack instead of as an opinion or valid points)
Here are some organizational steps to take to help conquer those fears.
Step #1 – Choosing the social media outlets that work for you
With so many choices, you need to look at the your audience and where they spend their time. Take small steps and venture to one outlet at a time. Get comfortable with that site. Too many sites at the start and you will become overwhelmed.
Step #2 – Audience and Strategy
Figuring out your audience will help you figure out your content. In order to be heard you need to know how to listen! Once you have your audience and content, you need a social media strategy. This strategy will help you stay focused and relevant in your message.
Step #3 – Time Management
As stated in step one, start small, this will help you with your management. Set aside a small amount of time each day, 15 minutes is recommended, to post your next comment, ad, picture, etc and to review any comments that people have left for you on your last post(s). Once you start to add other social media outlets and 15 minutes is not enough dedicated time, than you can look at social media management tools, like HootSuite, to help manage your social media networks, schedule future messages and provide analytic data on your content and audience.
Step #4 – Feedback
Feedback is always scary. You’ve put yourself and your hard work out there for the world to see and you want to hear from everyone, but some people are brutally honest, NOT in a constructive way, instead they are just mean. Those are the comments that I find very frustrating and quite frankly useless to hear. With that said, you need to respond to all comments. Part of your strategy should be how to respond to the negative feedback. Don’t kid yourself, it will happen, be prepared and nip it in the bud. How you respond can have an impact on the individual and on all others who read the comments.
I hope that this beginners guide strategy can help conquer any fear you might have. I’m not sure I’m over being scared, but I’m going to work on it. These articles helped focus me and keep me looking forward. At least I know I’m not alone in my fear and discomfort and I’ll keep that with me and continue writing blogs and listening to my audience (good and bad). I look forward (?) to hearing what you have to say or advice you have to offer as I try to grow into this new world I’m venturing into.