While I don’t claim to be a social media expert or “guru,” I’ve been around the social media scene for a few years (since the days of MySpace, actually.) I work for a social media company, and I coach writers about how to manage their social media and build a brand for themselves online. I keep on top of the social media industry, and I’m constantly reading blogs and articles by people far more expert than me.
But there’s one thing I’ve noticed that man of the real social media experts and gurus neglect in their blogs, articles, and branding courses: social media should be fun.
You can have all the best branding techniques in the world, all the most streamlined scheduling tools, all the sharpest graphics – and all of those are great. But for the novice first getting their feet wet with trying to grow a following on Twitter or Facebook, this can be overwhelming.
I believe that it’s easier to commit to a project and be disciplined over the long haul if you’re enjoying the process. Writers (and other creatives) can probably identify with this. Granted, writing isn’t all sunshine and kittens every single day; but most writers are pursuing their craft and/or career because they love it (it’s generally not for the money, amiright?)
Anyway, it’s important to have fun with your social media. Not only will this help you to be disciplined with your consistency (a key element in making a social media presence work for you), but having fun will also help you to learn. It’s always easier to learn something that we’re interested in and enjoy, right? Instead of looking at building your brand or online author platform as a necessary evil, find something about it that’s fun.
You don’t have to do everything. Some experts say that you have to have thousands of followers on ten different social media sites, you must post eight to ten times a day on all of them, etc., etc. My advice is to find one social media site that you like (or think you could grow to like) and become really good at it.
My personal favorites are Twitter and Pinterest. I have much larger followings on those sites, rather than on Facebook or Google+, because I enjoy them. Some days it’s hard to get me off Pinterest and onto doing other things (like writing, going grocery shopping, etc.)
We shouldn’t underestimate the importance and power of fun. Growing your social media for professional purposes doesn’t have to be a chore. Start small and have fun!