Does this sound familiar…
You’re running from meeting to meeting, from call to call, with emails stacking up and it all just seems too much. To top it off, you have committed to blog 2-3 times a week and manage your tweet stream so that it is important to others. You have to review your LinkedIn page and update it appropriately for your network. Oh, and then there’s your Facebook page – something you want to live in and be a part of. And you need to earn a living while doing all of this!
So how do you do all of this??
How do you find the time to connect to your social network?
Let’s remember that you actually have more time then you think! Thank you to Laura Vanderkam and her excellent book (“168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think”) which states that we certainly do have ‘more than enough time’. She means after eating, sleeping, and your basic necessary functions, most people still have 100-110 hours left in their week. From that 110 hours most people actually work 40-50 real hours a week in their jobs. So that leaves you a lot of time – even though it doesn’t feel that way.
This is because we are in an interrupt-driven world and live too-often interrupted lives. In fact, because of social media we are contributing and adding to the number of interruptions to an exponential degree from just a few years ago when email was the main drag on your personal effectiveness. Nevertheless, if you are reading this you probably believe or have agreed with the premise that social media is essential to your career and future.
So how do you make the time?
Here are a couple of tips:
1.) Segment your email time from the business of social media. Don’t blur these together. Email is still going to dominate (not withstanding claims in some circles as to its immediate demise). It is still going to be the dominant way for structured and process oriented information to be exchanged between parties. So treat that as just work.
2.) Have clarity as to what you want to accomplish through your social media. Have message clarity and know what it is that you want to say and to whom you want to say it. Jot down a few “Principles to Live By” for your social media. Not for the fun, every day stuff – but for that part of Social Media that you’re leveraging for business purposes.
3.) Take time on a Saturday to go to a Starbucks or local Coffee Shop to think of 4-6 blog titles you want to work with. Just read something – listen to an audio book or just stare into space… but all you want are a few good ideas.
4.) Think about audio recording your blogs, not necessarily for podcasting, but to just get your thoughts down while driving. Griffin has an excellent tool for the iPhone that lets you record very easily. Or, if you don’t have an iPhone or other smartphone, just buy a $50 recorder at Staples. This way you can just get your thoughts down right away when you have them.
5.) Definitely use a tool like Hootsuite or TweetDeck to manage your tweeting. This will help to leverage your tweets to reference your own posts, not only your current ones but past ones which had memorable quotes. While you are at it, take the time to leverage on the power of facebook and learn how you can boost your online business by using the Facebook Fan Page Photos.
6.) Create a quote bank in excel from your own content – so you’ll always have something to tweet about.
7.) The rest of your social network is going to be real time and organic and just doing social media in the way you have always done it.
Creating a couple of these background processes will assure you that you will not have to burden yourself with ‘I need to blog right now!’ or ‘I need to Tweet right now!’ but instead you are working off of a baseline plan that will assure you the 50-60% of the coverage you want to give to your social media space.
I think if you organize around message clarity and your baseline interactions and if remember you actually DO have enough time – you can surely get a hold of this tiger by the tail. Maybe, you will be surprised that you might even find time to attend social media conferences.
This is a guest post by Jose Palomino, President of g2m Group, Inc, and author of Value Prop; he blogs at StrategicPropositions.com. Jose helps business leaders take their ideas, products and services to market with greater consistency, speed and impact. He has worked extensively with industry leaders including IBM, SAP, Accenture, Chase and Citicorp. A proven strategist, dealmaker and presenter, Jose makes strategic marketing practical and immediately usable. With an MBA from Villanova University, he serves as President of the Executive MBA Alumni Association and is also a Vistage International Speaker.
16 thoughts on “Not Enough Time to Be Social?”
This is something that I am very guilty of. I have my posts automatically posted on Twitter and Facebook but I know I have to make more time to interact properly.
I try to put aside an hour on Saturday and an hour on Sunday.
Most of us don’t give much time to be social and our tweets are also promoting mostly our links 🙁
I agree with Dean. I believe I have all the technological components properly connected with one another, and yet I still fail to commit the necessary time. I guess based on this post, I truly haven’t any excuse… Thank you for the tips.
Great post. I agree its never easy these days to find time for all these social stuff. Especially if you already occupied by a full time job. The same case has happened to me too. But being an internet addict and a social media freak, I do take out some of my time for all these activities. The best thing which is helping me with all these is my GPRS enabled cellphone. It helps me stay in touch with this social media 24hrs. So, not a big issue for me right now 🙂
Hi Aswani. GPRS enabled cellphone is definitely one tool that allows us to find the time for engaging socially. I know about your activeness on social networks and there is a lot to be learned from you, that’s for sure. Care to write a guest post for me 🙂
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Most marketers are guilty of this. I know I have to get better at it because social media is one of the best marketing avenues out there. Interacting with others is a great way to learn and stay connected also because the home business industry is constantly evolving.
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On top of that, I’m finding it hard to make time for my non virtual friends. Some of them are getting irritated with me because I spend so much time on my computer. I say things to myself like “I’m not working today” then work anyway.
Some good tips but I’m not sure if I agree with the math, at least not when I’m concerned. Also may differ if you’re a family man or a woman with young kids. Then lets not forget having enough time to just relax and watch a good movie.
I’m not too fussed about social networks. Dislike FaceBook, even though I have an account. Never really updated Linkedin. Love Twitter the best because it’s the most efficient.
I’m with you Sire. Not A FaceBook lover also, although I look at it once in a while. I’m a Twitter fan too because it does not take to much of your time to be social. As with the math, for sure that this does not apply to everyone 🙂
I do think it’s important that you take a break. Sometimes, something just have to wait or be turned off. Part of the reason why I wanted to get into online marketing and blogging is so that I can minimize the day’s operations for simplicity.
I find this to be the case a lot. I wish there was more time in the day. I have found that if I set up tweets on the weekend to go out during the seek it helps. One day we will find a way to master it. We are an ever evolving race!
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Some great tips you got there. I do always tell people that there are 24 hours in a day so you have plenty of time to try to accomplish what you need to have done.
I appreciate the effort you made on this post. One thing that constantly nags me is my inability to minimize the time I spend on all the social media areas outside of blogging. The blogging part is my favorite part and I love connecting with other people through comments on their blogs. The part I feel far less efficient with are things like Twitter. Sometimes I wonder if the time investment is really worth the reward. I suppose if you are willing to commit to it long term that it absolutely would be. Anything less than total commitment seems like it could result in a very inefficient use of your time.
Well, I have used some of these tools for bookmarking, specially Hootsuite. You can add upto 5 social bookmarking sites in free account and also 2 RSS. And I found this tool really helpful, but I am missing others posts and tweets. Either I am missing it or there is no such option in it.
As a video professional, I would like to mention that video can be a huge piece of social networking. You can post it to Facebook and Twitter. If you are low on time, you could always record videos with your phone and upload them to your social network profiles when you get the time!
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