(Or Things I Wish I'd Known When Starting Out - part 4 of 4)
You may think that the answer to this is self-evident - you're on social media to sell more goods or services, right?
How can that be? Let's look at an example ...
Let's say that you are on Twitter because you want to sell more books and you've decided that Twitter is a great place to find readers and sell to them. You've figured out that Twitter is one long feed and that getting noticed is really hard. You decide to schedule frequent posts, one every half hour at certain key times. Surely, you think, that way your followers will get to see your news, no matter what time they log on. And by repeating it they will, eventually, take the news on board.
Oh dear. This is one of the most frequent, basic errors that new social media users can make. It will annoy your followers like nothing else. It's boring, intrusive, clogs up their feed and takes up their precious social media time. You will likely NOT become a favourite and you are very likely to lose followers.
But if it is the wrong reason to be on social media, what is the alternative?
The Real Reason You Are On Social Media
Underlying these hints and tips, though, is something far bigger and far more fundamental, and it is this...
The reason that we are all on social media is to build our community.
It is that simple: interacting and engaging means that we have meaningful conversations and in doing so we build our community.
Within our community, all sorts of magical things can happen. We can meet a like-minded illustrator who could help us turn a children's book into reality. Maybe someone who could inspire us (to write, to change our lives) or challenge us. We can find new friends. We can find new favourite authors. We can find colleagues to discuss things that vex us and find strategies to address these. We can share insights and new ideas. We can share our news and enjoy and share in theirs. Yes, we can meet the people who buy our products or services, but it is so much wider than that, and that is what makes social media so exciting and so empowering.
1. there is so much to learn, and as soon as you achieve something you'll realise that there is something else to do.
2. give yourself permission to recognise the journey that you are undertaking and the distance that you are travelling.
3. you will make mistakes, too. That's ok. You're learning. Learn, grow, move on.
My experience, what I have learnt so far, is that the whole point of being on social media is to build that community. Community rewards in so many ways, and you get back what you put in. So place this at the heart of your social media approach, make it why you get onto LinkedIn or Facebook or Twitter on a morning and make your social media presence real and fulfilling.
Taken from Caroline A Connell's forthcoming eBook "Learn, Grow, Move On" - copyright Caroline A Connell 2013