making time for social media

I’m getting kind of tired of business owners complaining about not having time for social marketing in their business and then they go home and watch 87 seasons of Game of Thrones or House of Cards in a row.

I don’t have time to do bookkeeping or draw up legal contracts but that doesn’t mean they don’t get done. I could say “I’m not a bookkeeper or an attorney. I’ve got real work to do,” but instead I either make the time or hire someone to do it.

It is unfortunate for many that it has gotten more complex to stay ahead and be successful in business. You can sit and complain about “stupid Twitter and crazy Facebook LIVE and Instagram” or you can get up and get busy.  I have little patience for people who don’t make it a point to stay on top of their game and then complain about their business not doing well.  Do the HUSTLE people!  (I might need to put down my cup of coffee right now…you got me started!)

People say, “I can’t spend all day on social media, I have a real job to do.” I admit, there are times I want to let my inner-voice reply and say, “Luckily you won’t have a real job, or be in business for long and then you can spend all day on social media.” My friendly filter kicks in fortunately, and my mouth stays shut! People…marketing has ALWAYS taken time. It’s just new tools. Be happy you are not having to format Yellow Page ads anymore!

For others, it is a very fortunate time. This is like the days of the gold rush. There’s GOLD IN THEM THERE HILLS, but you’re going to have to pick up a shovel and start digging for it! It is a time when you can reach a greater audience than ever before. It’s a time when you can let people know what your area of expertise is without having to mail them a 5-pound packet with brochures and proposals. As a matter of fact, it’s a time when you really don’t have to mail anything at all (sorry postal workers). It’s also a time when you don’t have to spend an hour a day making cold calls. You can connect on social sites first and then schedule appointments. So grab that shovel and let’s get busy.

Here are 5 tips to become more efficient with your time and be able to get your marketing activities in without spending all day doing them:

Learn to use your smartphone

If you don’t HAVE a smart phone, get off the computer right now and march into your nearest Verizon store and tell them you’re ready to join the world. It will be the best investment in time management you will make. For those of you with a smartphone already, learn to use all of it’s features.

You cannot do all that needs to be done correctly if you are waiting until you get back to your desk. Reply to email while you are standing in line at the grocery store (a good reason to choose the long line) or while driving through the car wash. You’d be surprised how efficient you can be in those slivers of time. Be sure you have all of your contacts’ information in your phone. Whether you use Gmail or Outlook, load the apps necessary to have your world at your fingertips.

Download and use social dashboard apps like Hootsuite that allow you to monitor your brand, respond to questions and comments and schedule content to drop while you’re doing your “real job.” If you set up search queries for your industry information, you will be fed content to share, and comment on without having to go search for it.

Be sure to have Facebook PAGES app on your mobile device since you cannot do everything for a business page on the regular Facebook app, you need the PAGES.

Did you know you can go into your local Apple Store, Verizon store (or most other service providers) to take classes on how to use your device? Have them show you how to harness the power you already have to be efficient.

content marketing planning

Spend one hour each week planning your social marketing

If you think you’ll have moments of brilliance and strategic focus throughout the week in between helping customers or answering phone calls, you’re delusional. If you take one hour of focused time to plan out your strategy, you’ll amaze yourself with the ideas you can come up with. What specials do you want to run? What theme or focus will you take with the content you share this week? Do you have the photos needed to add to the posts? What platforms will you use and what will be the goal on each? Perhaps a promotion will run on your Facebook page and you will have tweets pointing people to the post on Facebook. Maybe you need a great photo that represents your promotion to share on Instagram and you can also link that back to the post. Write up your plan and then spend 30-minutes each morning executing and tweaking the plan.

Don’t confuse business marketing time with personal time

You wouldn’t think of calling all of your best friends and family members in the middle of a busy day, so don’t get sucked into the trap of reading all of their Facebook posts. Years ago, in my early sales days, we would divide our activities based on PAY TIME and NON-PAY TIME. Calling prospects or setting up client appointments were always done during PAY TIME. Reading an article on becoming a better sales person…do that in NON-PAY TIME!  Seeing what your friends are up to on Facebook… NON-PAY TIMEThe best thing to do on both Facebook and Twitter is to use lists. Create a list for family members, clients, hot target accounts, friends, and co-workers. Now when you log into Facebook, you can filter and only read content from hot target accounts or clients. You can read tweets from your lists of potential clients or thought leaders instead of every tweet that comes flying in. Read about cousin Eileen’s wedding during that Game of Thrown’s marathon.  We have a template that we use for our social media managers that can help you stay focused with the many social media activities you juggle each day.  Download it here.

Hire someone to help you with the social marketing activities

Of course, I would recommend this option since this is what we do, but you can hire a part time person to assist you in your efforts as well. If you are able to find a brilliant writer, hire someone who can write a blog post each week and help you source photos and content for you to read or share. Then you can focus on planning, scheduling content, and replying to comments and questions that come in.

Jump into new social tools and platforms early to play around

It is much easier to poke around Pinterest or share a Snapchat video of your dog chasing his tail for fun than it is to try and learn these tools as you figure out how to use it in your marketing strategy. Don’t stop learning. When you hear of a new tool, check it out. Don’t wait until your competition is whooping you before you explore it.

What are your favorite tips to fit your marketing into your overpacked schedule? Inquiring minds want to know! Please share your ideas with us in the comments below.

Are you wondering which activities are necessary to do each day? Download our list of daily and weekly activities to keep your social audiences connected.

what to do each day on social media

@GinaSchreck