Social media is one of the best prospecting tools you can utilize in your online marketing strategy. It has the potential to rank right up in the top lead generation strategies as organic lead generation search engine optimization (SEO). When it comes to warm contact marketing, i.e. personal relationship lead generation, social media is a powerful way to build relationships that build the Know, Like, and Trust factor that is important in customer acquisition and retention.
Through the use of personal profile development and wall postings, fan pages, business pages, groups, and all the options that a person has to build their personal brand on social media websites, social media is a huge success multiplier if it is used correctly. When it comes to social media, the undisputed champion of the world is Facebook. With expected growth to hit one billion users within the next 1 year, it is a virtual mega-wealth of opportunity if you know how to use it properly. But danger lurks in the shadows of social media involvement… the danger of it becoming a huge time waster.
Sucked into the Wormhole
The novelty of social media and Facebook in particular is that you can spend literally hours of your day on a social media website being continually drawn into the wormhole of social interaction. There is nothing wrong with social interaction, however, whether you are self-employed or on your job with ‘nothing to do’ (this is a whole topic of personal integrity alone), if you are not careful, you can see literally hours wasted in your day (this includes smart phone status messaging and responding too).
If you don’t have a disciplined daily schedule, it won’t take long before you’re sucked into the social media wormhole and see hours of your productive day literally sucked out of your existence.
Getting a Handle on Your Social Media Time
Here are some action steps to take in order to make social media your friend in productivity and not the nemesis of your daily productivity.
1) Do a time audit of a typical day in your work week. Determine how much time is required for you to get your primary job done in a manner that is worthy of acknowledgment and praise, either by your employer if you are employed, or by your employees if you own your own business. If you are self-employed, have no employees, and are not accountable to anyone, social media could very well rob you of tens of thousands of dollars in lost productivity. Be honest in auditing your daily time spent using social media.
2) Once you have an accurate time audit of your productive day (the time each day that you are supposed to be making money for you or your employer), establish a specific amount of time for using social media for a) your business use, and b) your personal use, then stick to your schedule. You might find that 30 minutes a day of concentrated focus on building your social media presence is enough to accomplish everything productive that you want to do on it. If so, do not waste additional time in surfing your social media network IF you cannot honestly say that it is financially productive for you to do so.
3) Establish a systematic way of using social media and determine an allotment of time that you will devote to your social media marketing, THEN STICK TO IT. If you only have 30 minutes each day to invest in social media, do it with a purpose. Check personal messages, add a status message that engages your followers (the goal is to generate meaningful dialogue for a specific purpose, i.e. financial success, personal brand building, etc)., accept friend requests, respond to wall posts on your wall, and request a few new connections- BUT KEEP TO YOUR TIME ALLOTMENT for social media interaction. DO NOT wander aimlessly through the pages and pictures of your connections. As fun as it might be, it keeps you from accomplishing your personal and professional goals for the day.
When you apply some basic principles of personal responsibility using social media, you will find that you will free up several hours a week in your schedule and become far more productive in pursuing your personal and professional goals. What you do in your personal free time is up to you, but when it comes to making money, make a plan that iutilizes good time management skills, surround yourself with the right people to make it happen, and stick to your plan.
Remember, time is our greatest asset, and how we utilize it will directly affect our immediate success, as well as our long term goals.