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SOCIAL MEDIA: Managing your time

Social media columnist
Social media columnist

If you want to engage with your customers on social media, you should spend time on social media sites every day. One of the comments I hear most often regarding social media is that it’s so time-consuming.

The problem is that there’s content to read, real-time feeds, interesting comments and constant activity going on. All of this can suck you in and drain your time.

However, it doesn’t have to be this way as there’s a tidal wave of information and noise that you don’t need. I thought I’d share six quick tips that will help you develop good habits to tune out the clutter:

1. Stay focused – When you visit your social sites, keep your goals in mind. Set a goal each day – could be to reply to comments, do a daily update or find new fans. When you’re on social media, stay focused on that goal. Don’t do anything that doesn’t bring you closer to achieving it.

2. Set limits – Every time management expert will tell you that it helps to set specific limits. Decide exactly what particular tasks you want to accomplish, so you don’t get lost in it. For example, tell yourself you’re going to write three posts or replies.

3. The kitchen timer – You don’t need fancy time management tools or gadgets to make your social media time more efficient. An ordinary kitchen timer will do. Decide how long you’re going to work and set the timer. Forget about the time and it’ll let you know when it’s time to stop.

4. Social time – Choose a certain time of day to be your ‘social time’ and don’t check social media sites during other times. For example, it might be after you first check your emails in the morning or it could be a specific time of day, if you’re that organised.

5. Delegate and automate – A great way to limit your social media time is to delegate to someone in your business to take care of it for you. Decide which tasks can be delegated and give them those, for example, checking your sites and accepting new friend requests. Alternatively, you can outsource part or your whole activity to a Social Media Manager :-)

6. Monitor your results – One of the most important parts of social media is monitoring your activity. Are you getting the results you want? Set long-term goals in addition to short-term goals and see if you’re reaching them. If not, consider upping your social media time or changing what you do with it.

Hopefully, by following these tips, you’ll avoid spending too much time on social media and that shock when you find it’s suddenly an hour later and you’re still browsing!


A quiet fortnight for a change!


Facebook at Work was unveiled this week. Not an invitation to spend all your time on Facebook as it is ‘only available to people who have set up a work account through their employer’ and is currently in beta testing stage on iOS.


LinkedIn Opens Publishing to New Markets: The ability to publish on LinkedIn is now available ‘to all members in English-speaking countries’. They believe that this will allow you to strengthen your reputation and grow your reach.