“I wake up in the middle of the night sometimes,” a client recently told me, “freaking out that someone’s posted to our Facebook page and I haven’t responded quickly enough.” She’s taken to sleeping with her smartphone on the nightstand, just in case.
“I can’t afford to unplug,” a colleague confided. “Twitter has become one of our primary customer service channels, and you never know when there’s going to be a problem.”
Do these situations sound familiar? As social media becomes a larger and larger part of the way we do business, many business owners are struggling with the need to be constantly connected. Fast Company recently had a fantastic article detailing strategies you can use to cope with social media overwhelm. Here’s what I’d like to add to Laura Roeder’s great insights:
Effective social media management for business owners comes down to two key concepts: boundaries and delegation.
Let’s talk about boundaries first. It’s a hard but true fact that we simply cannot do everything our customers want us to do, all of the time. It is physically and psychologically impossible to be available all the time. We have to come to peace with the fact that sometimes people will be disappointed, and set reasonable boundaries for ourselves. For example, for the vast majority of small businesses, particularly those not involved in life-and-death situations, responding to a social media posting that appears in the wee hours of the morning the next business day is perfectly reasonable.
Delegation of social media management can make your life exponentially easier as a business owner. Collecting, creating and posting content and engaging with customers over social media can very easily be a part-time job. Recognizing that you just don’t have the time to do that part-time job on top of the more-than-full –time position you already have running the company is good business sense. Whether you delegate the task to an in-house employee or an outside agency, choosing a reliable, competent person who understands both marketing and technology takes a lot of stress off of your already full plate.
Sleeping at night is not optional. You can’t opt out of down time. Social media is there 24/7, but you don’t have to be. With appropriate boundaries and smart delegation, social media can help you build your business without being a burden. Need help making this happen? Give us a call!