Overwhelmed by Social Media

I have had an opportunity to engage with a number of small businesses and entrepreneurs in recent weeks in a conversation about social media. These conversations have centred around considerations of what “model” is right for them and their business or endeavour. Many have spoken to me about being overwhelmed by social media. They aren’t sure where to start, they see so many options to choose from and they don’t know where to start or what to try.

The answer is quite clear that there is perhaps not a “standard” model to put in place. The model needs to be right for your business or endeavour.

One of the constant concerns about moving to adding a mix of social media in their business is what appears to be a fear of being overwhelmed by social media channels. This could be true if one were to blindly sign up, register, subscribe and connect in a multitude of channels. It would be impractical to think that all of that could be managed by a novice in social networking. I would suggest that it would be overwhelming, even for someone more experienced in this space.

Establish Home Base

Chris Brogan and Rob Hatch certainly coach folks towards a Home Base and Outpost approach. In that manner you determine what will be the centre piece for your social networking. Once you get home base figured out, you can add outposts – in a planful strategic manner.

Why Social ?

The other consideration is “why social”?  A mistake might be that people feel that they need to be on social networks because they hear of so many people adding Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIN, Youtube and or Google+ or many other platforms to their communications mix. The reality is that whatever social media you add to YOUR mix. YOU need to determine how it fits strategically in your business. What is your business intent? What are you selling? What do you want to achieve by adding on that social network? Perhaps that social network is only going to be intended to provide you with new prospects, new conversations, new connections. The “sale” will take place on your website – or via the direct call in order desk. How will these social networks enrich your “selling cycle”? How are they generating new leads and prospects?

Define your Need

When you answer some of these questions on a blank sheet of paper or notes application your “need” will become clearer and you will have a lesser feeling of being overwhelmed by social media.

This can apply to business for selling a product or brand, as well as not for profits in signing up volunteers or generating donations. It all depends on what your final outcome is with respect to your business strategy.

Too Many Phone Lines

So…don’t be overwhelmed by social media. Take your time to build your network one step at a time. I liken social networks to putting in additional separate independent phone lines in your office or home. How many separate phone lines do you want ringing, and are your equipped, staffed and prepared to answer them when they all start buzzing at the same time. If you are prepared, planned and ready for that moment – you won’t be overwhelmed by social media.

Best wishes for success in adding social media to your communications mix. Don’t hesitate to reach out with your questions. I love to assist in helping people get comfortable with the power of social media. Don’t be overwhelmed by social media. Embrace, Engage and Build your business with these tools. Cheers !

FERG @FergDevins @DevinsNetwork