By Dana Lindahl
The power of social media for small business is obvious; few would now deny its potential for your business’s growth and connecting with customers. But as the old saying goes, “With great power comes great responsibility;” and using social media responsibly can prove exceedingly difficult.
When was the last time you logged into Facebook or Twitter to post a new update, and before you knew it, an hour had passed and you still hadn’t posted anything? The instant nature of social media is certainly gratifying, but it’s all too easy to use social for everything except what you should be using it for.
Make social media work for you, not against you.
Social media’s potential to become a massive time suck is because of the ease of distraction. You fire up Facebook with the intention of sharing your blog’s latest post, but quickly find yourself up to your neck in notifications, invitations and titillating status updates.
Distraction is everywhere though, right? But we’re all adults here. We should be able to maintain enough self-control over our attentiveness so that distraction doesn’t become an issue. Easier said than done.
The most effective way to keep social media from becoming a distraction -- is not actually using social media. But that only serves to bring up an even more frustrating question: How can I harness the power of social media without actually using social media?
Luckily, there’s an entire sub-industry dedicated to this exact purpose -- helping people get the most out of their social media accounts, without letting social media become a colossal time suck. Here’s some of the most popular methods today:
Hire a social media manager.
This option is usually best for larger businesses which already have experience outsourcing and delegating tasks to others. By hiring a social media manager, your social media accounts stay updated without you having to access or look at them.
Of course, your social media manager needs to be very familiar with your business, your brand, and your messaging to ensure they represent your businesses in a consistent way with the right voice and tone.
Once a business grows to a certain size, this is a necessary step, and it might even be necessary to hire an entire social media team. You don’t think the CEO of Coca-Cola is the one behind the keyboard sending out those status updates, do you?
Use an app.
Apps like Buffer are great for small to medium-sized businesses where the owner is still very involved in the company’s social media presence. With Buffer you can update all your social media accounts at once, without even logging into or opening your accounts at all.
You can schedule updates far in advance to drip out over time, so you don’t even need to log into Buffer that often. It’s all the benefits of logging in and posting to your social media accounts (all at once) with none of the temptations.
Cut out distraction with News Feed Eradicator.
If your small business is based around your personal brand, and you’re constantly logging into your own Facebook account for business, News Feed Eradicator could be a lifesaver.
Currently available as a plugin for the Chrome browser, News Feed Eradicator does exactly what it sounds like it should -- eradicates your news feed. When you log in your news feed shows no status updates, only a motivational quote. This allows you to go about your business, without the clickbait that pops up at every turn on your news feed.
The fact that there’s a whole subculture devoted to helping professionals manage their addiction to social media says about the world we live in, smart business owners will take whatever help they can get.
Article: Copyright © 2014, Studio One Networks. All rights reserved.
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