Social media is a funny thing. There is such a mix of people out there these days all living together at different levels: there are the people growing up now who ALWAYS had it and walk around inside their phone all day long .... there are the people, like me, who built their business a few years before social media blew up who know how to get along without it, but would rather not ... and then there are the people who are still trying to understand it and it pisses them off to HAVE to sign up ... it's like a chore they'd really rather not do, but know needs to get done.
A lot of the time social media is totally unfair ... it frustrates us while at the same time makes us beam with pride ... I've compiled a list of things about social media that are annoying, but we should embrace them anyway:
1. To Grow A Lot Of Followers You Usually Need A Lot Of Followers: This one is a catch-22 that is SUPER frustrating. To gain followers you need followers. Right?? People tend to gravitate towards following accounts that already have a lot of followers. It's like we're scared to follow an account with a tiny amount of followers as if we're doing something we shouldn't be doing << Why isn't anyone else here?? Maybe I shouldn't follow them either! It's silly isn't it? I'm perfectly guilty of this and if you're being honest I'm sure you are too! Of course, if I know the person with the account or I've worked with them before I will follow ... but there needs to be a connection made. However, if you go to an account and see that they have 20,000 followers you'll probably hit that 'follow' button so fast! Unfair?? YES. But, I've embraced it because people work HARD to gain a following and they deserve the following they have. If you want the followers to come then work for it and I promise you it will happen.
2. People Will Post Your Work And Never Credit You For It: I'm sure I have posted your work on my IG account and never gave you a credit >> insert hand raised emoji here << ... am I sorry??? YES!!! It pains me to know I'm guilty of this because if my work was shared and I wasn't credited I would be unpleased. But it happens. It blows. The reason we need to embrace it is because it will always ALWAYS happen. If we don't accept it we will go through fits of rage every time it happens and it will ruins our lives ;) The best thing to do?? If you see it happen just let the person know instead of throwing an 'adult tantrum sized fit' all over your personal FB page.
3. The Social Media Outlet You Use Most Will Flip The House On You: It's happened MANY times and it will happen MANY MORE times ... your favorite social media outlet will wake up and decide to change their story. You will be riding along all pretty with a trail of cupcakes and rainbows following you and BAM(!!) fall right into the mud. This is where the 'type of social media' user I named above who started their business a few years before social media hit hard usually flourishes the best. They've figured out how to use social media to boost them in business, but they have so much other stuff going on that they don't FULLY DEPEND ON IT ... my best advice is to embrace that social media is NOT reliable and make sure you have lots of other support systems in place so your business can keep kicking ass even when Instagram decides it's not going to play nice anymore ;)
4. It Has The Power To Build You Up And Tear You Down: The confidence that social media can give to a business or to a person is terrifyingly high. Get a bunch of likes on an image you shared and you'll float around like nothing can touch you. But share something and hear crickets??? You will probably question your worth in this world. Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves with this sh*t?? Because we do. We always will. And how your day goes or how your week goes could very much depend on how things in the 'social-media-sphere' are going. If you feel yourself being sucked into the social media bubble of depression then get away from it for a minute ... go out in the real world and 'forget' to bring your phone with you .... wink, wink.
5. Your Business Depends On It To Grow And Be Successful: Social media reminds people that you exist. PERIOD. If you don't use it then you will lose to the business next door to you that is! Fighting social media to make a stand is not worth the loss your business can take. If you don't feel you have time to post 800 times per week across all your social media outlets then hire someone to do that for you! It's worth it in the end to keep up with it and when you start seeing results and watching your following rise you will be thanking yourself.
6. Sometimes You'll Need To Pay Them: Social media is free ... HA!!!!!!!!! No, it's not. Social media takes time and energy and it's exhausting to keep up with. And then after all that work you might not see anything from it ... and that's why I say that sometimes you should spend a little money to make it go the extra mile. If I have something CRAZY COOL that I am doing or have done I will pay for it to get seen more across Facebook. I haven't tried the Instagram ads yet, but I want to!! And remember: this is all tax deductible and you may just find that you will get a new client or two off of the $50 bucks you threw at FB!
7. You Will Need Breaks That Sometimes Last For A Long Time: I go through ups and downs with social media. And breaks keep me sane. If you are reading this blog there is a high chance that you have a job that depends on your creativity and that is hard to keep up with ALL THE TIME. We need to step away and let our brain rest and often times for me that includes a little time away from my social media accounts. Is it ideal?? NO! But when I take a week off from FB or a few days away from my Instagram account I find I come back excited and ready to take it on ... it feels new to me again and often the break away gave me new ideas and ways to reach a new audience and I do even better than before.
8. The Second You Reach A Huge Milestone You Will Lose It Again: I am *this* close to having 10,000 followers on Instagram. It could even happen this week!! EEK!!! But I know that the second I see that 10K mark on my account it will go away ... with the amount of following and unfollowing going on and the number of accounts that are closed and opened on a daily basis you can't get too excited about reaching a 'following goal' you've been excited about reaching. Will I probably screenshot the 10K as soon as it happens and share it?? Sure ... but I also know that it's the 'kiss of death' and that it will show 9,000-something as soon as I announce it. I've found it typically takes about 3 weeks to KEEP a milestone number and to pass it by. So don't get too frustrated when that amazing feeling of reaching 1,000 followers stays in limbo for close to a month.
Are there more things about social media that are annoying?? YEP! Feel free to share them below in comments and we can all roll our eyes together!