Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Budget Your Social Media Time Wisely!

To Do ListLike many people, you probably have more tasks on your daily “to do list” than you can shake a stick at.  So, how do you incorporate Social Networking into your already busy day?  Is it really necessary to adopt this communication network into your business routine?

Well, In my humble opinion Social Networking is here to stay!  Nearly all business sectors are currently embracing these communication tools at some level.  Quietly, a paradigm shift (from skepticism to validation) of this technology has been occurring in business organizations for some time now.   Early Adopters of Social Media are already steps ahead of their peers.  Looking ahead, the reality is organizations downplaying the importance of Social Networking will be left in the dust by their more “forward thinking” competitors. My recommendation is engage yourself, and do it quickly!

There must be a balance between the time you budget for SM and other job responsibilities.  Due to its interactive and fluid nature, some people find themselves preoccupied with these tools and sometimes their overall job performance suffers.  Needless to say, that is not a good thing, for either the employee or  employer.  So, here are some tips on how to make your transition to the Social networking scene successful.

Plan Well — Create a written statement outlining your vision of what you wish to accomplish with each Social media application.

Sample Plan:

  • Facebook
    • learn more about clients’ background and interests
    • strengthen personal connections
  • Twitter
    • Collaborate with other industry Twitter users, exchanging information, relevant articles and perspectives on hot business topics.
    • Develop my brand and reputation in the online community
    • Build and maintain new & existing business relationships
  • LinkedIn
    • Develop an online business profile validating my credibility as a business person and individual.
    • Participate in relevant industry Group communities demonstrating thought leadership
    • strengthen existing industry relationships and develop new ones.

Schedule Strategically — develop a routine allocating certain times of the day for social networking.

Sample Routine:

  • Early Morning (7am – 8:15am)
    • Visit Facebook page and review posts made, check message inbox and respond accordingly.
    • Socialize with Facebook friends online.  (water cooler talk)
    • Open Twitter and review tweet posts made by users followed.
    • Follow up tweets of interest (Retweet, or acknowledge value to author).
    • Review News feeds, and post relevant tweets with article links to followers.
    • Review growth of follower base from previous day.
  • Mid Day (12noon – 1:15pm)
    • Check LinkedIn site for activity in member groups.
    • Respond to any discussions of interest and clip any relevant articles, posting them to Twitter for followers.
    • Review LinkedIn Inbox messages and respond.
    • Check Twitter messages, and review new tweets posted by users followed.
    • Follow up tweets of interest (Retweet, or acknowledge value to author).
    • Stop by Facebook to review any new posts and comment on those as appropriate.
  • Late Afternoon (4-5:15pm)
    • Stop by Facebook to review any new posts and comment on those as appropriate
    • Check LinkedIn message inbox and respond.
    • Check Twitter messages, new posts and follower volume since the morning.
    • Follow up tweets of interest (Retweet, or acknowledge value to author).

Note: This schedule is theoretical, and depending on your work responsibilities and routine, could shift from day to day.

Learn the features of the Social Networking applications and use them prudently.

  • Schedule Your Posts — Twitter has a few sister applications allowing users the flexibility of creating their tweet posts at their convenience and then scheduling them to be posted later.  One such application is called “Tweet Later.com”  There are many other applications like this available… the analogy I would use is that these tools function in much the same was as Tivo does for television.
  • Tweetdeck is a powerful external twitter client application (with Facebook interface) that enables a user to organize and filter through all the Twitter and Facebook posts they receive.  Here is a link to a really good article providing some tutorial guidance on this great tool!
  • Manage your Online Friends — Each application has its own functionality for this process.  There is a time commitment to building these relationships so make good decisions regarding who you initiate an online relationship with.  If you have some folks on your friends list not contributing to the connection, then you may wish to evaluate whether they should continue being part of your network.

I look forward to your feedback regarding this article and please share your thoughts and ideas here!

Follow Michael McCurry on Twitter

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

KenaSiu May 26, 2009 at 1:28 pm

Hello Mike, really nice post.
Actually I was thinking about making an agenda like you have up here.
The thing is that sometimes I spend much more time in twitter because there are lots of interesting information links to read, and need to bookmark in order to read later on.

Hope you’re having a nice day!


Michael M McCurry, CMP May 28, 2009 at 9:46 am

Thanks KenaSiu for your comments, much appreciated!! It really is a time commitment keeping up with all things happening in the social media world.

Thanks for visiting my blog!


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