Did you make any New Years Resolutions this year? If you did then how are they going? A few years ago I made a rather smug resolution which was to stop making resolutions, one which I’d successfully kept until this year.
Each January my husband and I stop drinking alcohol, we have done this off and on for the last 15 years, and never view it as a resolution. Every January we question why we drink. It wastes time, saps energy and costs money; the only alcohol we miss is wine to accompany a nice meal.
Towards the end of December I started to look forward to giving up alcohol knowing the benefits that it brings. I also started to think about other activities that steal time and realised that my social media usage was the number one enemy. So I decided to give it up for January. In reality for me this means twitter and facebook.
I have spent the last year learning about social media, in particular twitter and facebook. I have enjoyed it, have read and learnt some pretty interesting things but not enough to justify the time it can take. I have made some useful contacts via twitter but mostly I have squandered time.
So I’m no longer using social media, I have more time and I am less distracted. The most beneficial consequence, which I didn’t foresee, has been the amount of space this has freed up in my head. I have more time to think clearly. I am more focused and less easily distracted. It takes up a lot of time to think of witty and clever things to post on twitter- what a relief! Targeting two particular areas has led to more boycotts- I no longer look at a plethora of websites, I look at three, two news channels and linkedin. The latter reluctantly as it feels a time stealer too.
Social media can be really effective for small businesses if used strategically. Key questions are:
- Why do you use it?
- Who is the audience you want to reach?
- How do you measure its effectiveness?
- What is the best platform for your business?
All of these are basics and ones which I’d lost sight of. The irony is that I had to stop using social media to figure out that we need to use social media in a smarter way..
In February we’re going to agree an effective social media strategy that works for us at Inspiring Partnerships. The nature of which is shaping up but you can be sure that it’ll be focused and aimed at bringing tangible benefits to the business.
Have a great week and Happy New Year