When it comes to defining your social media purpose, it might be as simple as checking Facebook for pictures of friends and family or it may be more strategic like connecting with fellow court reporters to spread the word about this growing and exciting career. I’d like you to think about your reason for using social media for a few minutes this week. Write down why you’re using it and maybe even how you can use it better or more efficiently.
- Are you spending hours scrolling? Might be time to set a timer and focus your effort for a limited amount of time each day.
- Why are you on social media?
- Which social media sites are you using? What’s your purpose for each?
If you’re posting the same message to multiple social media sites, you might not be making the most of your effort.
The audience for Facebook is different than Twitter or LinkedIn because the type of users is different for each site.
- Twitter is typically used for content sharing. I also use it for research, similar to how I’d use Google.
- Facebook is used to connect friends and family; from a business perspective, it also connects businesses to their customers.
- For court reporters, I recommend joining reporter-specific groups on Facebook as well as LinkedIn. Facebook connects freelancers like our Chicago court reporters, and LinkedIn is designed for professionals.
You might post the same question to groups on Facebook and LinkedIn but I would caution you to post memes and photos to LinkedIn. Reserve your LI time for connecting with other reporters, court reporting agencies, and prospective clients.
Develop a strategy and be willing to make modifications.
It’s easy to get lost on social media and forget our social media purpose. I find I am most effective when I have a plan based on a specific strategy. Begin by evaluating which social media sites you’re currently using. Ask yourself how and why you’re using them. You might choose to use one or two on a regular basis and just check in on others once a week.
- Connect with ideal or target clients → Join groups where my clients are spending time.
- Schedule posts and live post. Don’t rely on schedulers like Buffer to reach your audience. You need to post live and engage with people who have liked your page or commented on a post.
- Decide the type of content you will post. Limit your personal Facebook page to personal posts and save the business for your professional page and LinkedIn.
When it comes to the type of content to post, I often use my friend as an example that you can modify for a business context. On her personal profile, she only posts inspirational memes, photos of her family and pets, and sports news. She has a business focused on healthy eating so she will post related recipes and photos. That’s it.
You won’t find a cat meme or senseless ramblings; it’s not her personality but it also helps her stay out of the weeds of social media.
The next time you grab your phone, “just to check Facebook,” think about why you’re looking. If it’s simply because you’re standing in line at the grocery store, I challenge you to put the phone away and start a conversation. You don’t need to be on all the time if you’ve got a clear social media strategy and purpose.