It’s a given.
We waste a lot of time on social media. Tell me… it isn’t true? Because I know I spend WAY too much time doing the wrong things on social media. I’m going to walk you through the best practices for writers on social media.
Stop Wasting Time & Make Use Of The Time You Are On Social Media
I recently found, I spend about half an hour scheduling content on each social media, because I like scheduling my content for social media out a ways. If you think of spending 30 minutes on each of your social medias (for me it’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn) so that’s four social networks.
The math says: 4 X 30 mins. That’s 2 hours or more depending on how much time you spend. Now imagine if you spend that much time on social media everyday!
Now if you add that up over a full week, including your weekend the math says that will end up being: 2hrs X 7 = 14 hours a week.
Can you imagine that? In a two week timespan that is almost 30 hours. 30 hours of time on social media!
That’s more than a day that you’ve wasted on social media. Do you really want to spend more than a whole day on social media? I know I don’t. Even though my job has to do with blogging and social media, I still don’t want to be stuck on social media more than I have to be.
If you’re anything like me I bet you’d love to get some tips cutting back on the time that you is being wasted on social media. I’ll also share some social media best practices so that the time that you do focus on social media is time well spent. I’m going to cover the best practices to keep in mind for while you are on social media. I’ll be doing another post for each of the different social networks with best practices and targeted tips for those social media platforms.
Social Media Best Practices – Pre Planning
Track Your Time Throughout The Day
It’s important to see how much time you are spending on social media. Follow this simple tracking exercise to see how much time you are really spending on social media.
You can do this for your whole day actually. Start out by writing the hours of the days and you can also divide the day out in half hour increments. Track everything. Track your time spend getting ready in the morning, writing blog posts, chores, and the 10-30 minutes spent scrolling on social media as well.
Write it out so it looks like this:
And on from there. You get the point.
Now just fill it in throughout the day. And be honest with yourself. This is going to save you more time during the day and throughout the week.
If you’d like to get the best results, I recommend doing this tracking exercise for an entire week.
At The End Of The Week
Whether you did it for a day or a week, sit down at the end of the day or week and take a look at which projects demanded the most of your time. Was most of your precious time leaking out in the small increments of time where you were waiting for something and scrolling on social media on your phone?
Ask yourself these questions:
- Where can I cut back?
- Where should I be focusing more of my time and energy?
- Do I get sidetracked? And if so, is it often?
- When I am sidetracked, what caused me to get distracted from the project I was working on?
From experience, I know that your time spent on social media, is going to be a much higher number than you probably think.Go to a mall and you’ll see people on their phone more than they are actually engaging in “real” life.”
Take the areas you can cut back on and use those times for other things where you can get more done.
If you’d like some help setting up a social media strategy that works, let me know and we can set up a blog/social media strategy coaching call.
Pick Your Two Social Platforms
It’s so easy to get overwhelmed by all the social platforms out there. So, I want you to pick two social platforms that you know your followers love or pick your two favorite social platforms.
I know that my followers see my content on my Instagram and my Facebook page, so that’s where I focus my energy. But after trying this method for a month, totally feel free to expand to the other social platforms. I just want to make sure you aren’t spreading yourself too thin when it comes to platforms.
How To Find Out Which Social Platforms You Get The Most Traffic from
If you want to find out which social media platforms are the best for bringing traffic to your blog, you can find out on Google Analytics, if you have that set up.
- Go to Google Analytics.
- Click on “Acquisition” on the left sidebar and then click “All Traffic”
- Now you can click “Channels.”
- Press the Social button and it’ll should you the traffic data from your social media networks.
Pick Your Social Media Planning Day
I want you to pick out a day this week that you are going to focus on scheduling out your social media. Only the two social platforms that you chose above.
Write Your Social Media Messages In Bulk
Take the blog posts you’ve written in the last month and go through those posts and create a bunch of social messages for them. One great way to keep track of those social messages, is to save them in a swipe file or grab file, which you can do this in Evernote or Google Docs. I personally love Evernote.
Write your social messages for the month’s most recent blog posts.
My personal favorite social message types are:
- Quotes (inspirational or a grab quote from your article):
- A question to get your audience thinking:
- A social story share (which is going to be a minimized version from a part of your blog post or article):
Once you have them written, you can schedule them out across time.
I’d aim at publishing at these times:
- Publish link posts on social media (especially Facebook) the day your post was published. I did a test to see what kinds of posts did best on Facebook and I found that link posts were the best for click through. If you used a picture and put a link in the caption or comment people would just click on the image and not your link. But if you share a link, and they press on it, it will bring them to your link.
- Schedule posts a couple times across the two social networks out a week after.
- Schedule posts 2 weeks out.
- Schedule posts 2 months out.
For old posts you can start scheduling them as though they were published the day you are scheduling them. Share it once on multiple networks that week. Once across a few networks the next. And once across a few networks in the next few months.
Now It Comes To Getting Those Babies Scheduled
It’s super important to be consistent on social media. There have been many times I’ve gone to a blogger’s Twitter page, to find that the last time they posted was in July last year. It’s a huge bummer and letdown when that happens.
In order to keep this from happening, set up a day where you are going to mass-schedule your social media posts. Instead of scheduling out content on social media every day, sit down and focus on scheduling your content to trickle throughout the next few weeks and months.
Then you won’t have to worry about it at all.
1. Schedule social content for recent blog posts.
3. Schedule social shares for your top blog content. Re-shares will give you more page views for your blog content.
I also love using Google Calendar to remind me to schedule posts on certain days, as well as remind myself to share to social media some days. In the morning when I wake up, I just love how Google Calendar sends all the things you need to do that day to your home screen. It makes me think what it’ll be like to have a personal assistant some day!
You can also find out what your top blog content is by checking on Google Analytics.
Find Your Top Blog Content On Google Analytics
In order to find your best-performing blog posts follow these steps:
- Get into your Google Analytics.
- Go to the bar on the left-hand side and scroll down until you se “Behavior.” Click on it.
- Next, click on “Site Content”
- And then click on “All Pages.”
The blog posts you’ll see there are the ones you’ll want to schedule more social message for. Share them a couple times a month so they continually get more eyes on them.
If you’d like some help going through these things, I can do blog coaching with you. And it’s reasonable.
Some Things You Can Do That’ll Improve Your Presence On Social Media
These are the things that will make you seem professional or less professional. You want to give the right image of your writing, brand, and blog.
You’ll want to make sure you set a great and sparkling standard of professionalism when it comes to grammar and spelling on your blog.
Something that really resonated with me was what Kyle Wiens the CEO of ifixit said about grammar on the Harvard Business Review “ From experience, I know that your time spent on social media, is going to be a much higher number than you probably think. They are a projection of you in your physical absence.”
Isn’t that true?
So, you’ll just want to make sure you do your best to make your copy clean.
What Is Your Standard Of Professionalism?
For Life Writing Wanderlust, I have a high standard of professionalism that I want for my blog posts. I want them to be:
- Clean copy. Meaning great grammar and spelling.
- Conversational writing like you are having brunch with me and we are just chatting. Which means, I use exclamation marks. I have a love hate relationship with them!!!!!! Because I get that excited when I talk.
- I use the oxford comma, thank you very much!
Some things you might want to think about as well are:
- Will I use colloquialisms?
- Can we use emojis and exclamation marks?
Publishing To Social Media Is Public And Permanent
I mean, you can delete things, but there is always a way for someone to find what you said again. So I always try to stay clear of negativity.
Some things that’ll help:
- Go through your social media posts and delete offensive things. This might even be the political stories you’ve been posting, no matter which side you are on. If you want to be seen as a professional, staying out of these conversations will help more people feel safe and comfortable about you.
- Highlight a desirable behavior
- Share happy messages that lead to happy outcomes.
- Be real. Be human.
- And for pete’s sake, don’t spam them. I once knew someone that would post every hour on the hour, because he believed if he posted that much more people would see his content. Yes, that might have worked with some of the older models of social media. But not anymore… don’t spam them. Even if they could see all your posts, do you really want to be sharing that often?
What are some social media best practices that you do to keep your audience happy?