Monday, 15 August 2011

I Don't Have the Time to Use Social Media!

It still amazes me how many businesses aren't using social media. Last week I was on an online forum where a lady was saying social media is just a waste of time. I gave a talk recently and I asked 4 questions:
1.      How many of you are on LinkedIn? Everyone raised their hands.
2.      How many of you are on Twitter? Half the hands dropped
3.      How many of you have a Facebook business page? Only 5 people kept their hands up.
4.      How many of you have a YouTube channel? Only 2 people kept up their hands and one of them was me!
Most of the audience had smartphones; iPhones and Androids etc and yet they weren't really using social media and one of the biggest reason people give me is they don't have the time. And the answer to question 1 is a bit misleading. The fact that everyone put their hands up doesn't tell the full story. We might all be on LinkedIn but in most cases all we have is a profile. To find out how you should be using LinkedIn see my blog post - How to use LinkedIn Effectively for Your Business

It takes too long - where do you find the time?
I get this question quite a lot. I try to answer it honestly. To begin with it can take a few hours out of your day whilst you learn how to use each platform but once you are familiar with Twitter, Facebook, Google+ etc then you can dip in and out throughout the day when you have a spare 5 or 10 minutes.  And don't even begin to pretend you're too busy and never have 5 minutes spare!
Think about your average day
It's the same for all of us - we only have 24 hours each day! And in fact, many of our daily routines are the same. Travelling to work, waiting for the kettle to boil, going to the loo, waiting for a train or bus, and waiting for a meeting.
There are always 5 or 10 minute gaps in our day which we can use to dip into social media.

   How do you get to work? Train, tube or bus?
Then you've got time whilst you're travelling. I know London Underground only has reception on limited parts of the network but if you're travelling by train you normally get 2 or 3 minutes on the platform when waiting for your next train. I see people on the bus everyday who just sit staring out the window. This is a perfect time to dip into Twitter and Facebook to see what conversations are going on.
   Making a cup of tea or coffee
The kettle takes about 3 minutes to boil. Perfect time for a quick look at Twitter.
   Going to the loo!
The perfect sit down time to catch up with your social media activities!
   Whilst printing multiple documents
On my printer it can take 4 to 5 minutes to print out hand out sheets. This is a perfect time for me to dip into Google Reader and find a few good blog posts which I can schedule to send on Twitter.
   Whilst on hold to a call centre
This can take hours sometimes & people say they don't have time! I was on hold this morning to ADT, our alarm company to book a routine inspection. I was on hold for 6 minutes. I had the handset on loudspeaker and used that time to catch up on LinkedIn, accept connections and join in a conversation in one of my groups.
   Waiting for the start of a conference or training session
We've all been in the situation where we're at a conference, sat waiting for it to begin. This is a great time to get out your smartphone, iPad or laptop and quickly check Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter.
When I'm at a conference or training day I like to take photos of the presenters/speakers and post them to Twitter. 
   During a conference
Nowadays it's become acceptable that members of the audience will be tweeting during the conference. This can be seen by some as being rude. People on mobile devices tweeting are not concentrating on the speaker! Whilst I get that; I prefer to flip it on it's head and think of all the free publicty the speakers and the conferences are getting nowadays, with many people tweeting about it. (Assuming that it's good publicity! It works both ways of course!)
   Waiting for an appointment
The great thing with smartphones is we always have them with us and they are so quick and easy to use. Sitting in a reception area waiting to go into an appointment is a good time to check in.
   Sat in your car between meetings
I often arrive early for some of my meetings. I love using this time on social media. I just sit in my car and catch up.
   On the commute home
Great time to wish people on Twitter a nice evening and see how their days have gone. It doesn't take long to jump into Facebook and add some comments and Likes to your contacts' pages.
   Watching TV in the evening
This is the time when I go through Google Reader and choose the articles and blog posts which I'm going to post on Twitter and Facebook and Google +.
I use Hootsuite and I schedule a lot of my content and I like to do this in front of the TV. My wife often likes to watch stuff I'm not into so I can still sit with her, but instead of wasting time while a TV show I'm not interested in washes over me; I sit and schedule some of my daily content for the coming week.

You CAN Find the Time
You have to change your thinking on social media - it's just another tool in your marketing tool box so you must spend some time on your strategy and creating your content. But people I speak to don't think spending time on social media is real work! It absolutely is real work and the sooner you reset your thinking on this and realise it is work and time spent on social media is a good investment of your time, the better.
Only then will you start to take it seriously and begin to find the time in your day when you can dip into social media.

Please share how you find the time.
How do you use social media? What are the times in your day when you dip into Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn?


Diane Keen said...

I have to say that tweeting on the loo wouldn't be my first location of choice. Maybe it's a man/woman thing.

But I agree that it takes 2 minutes to check up on twitter, maybe 5 if you find an interesting article like this one or 7 if you leave a comment.

dickiearmour said...

Hi Diane,
LOL! I did wonder how my "tweeting on the loo" would be taken!!
I can't name names, but I know a couplenof men and women who do this!
Thanks for taking the extra time to add a comment :)

CrescentMan said...

Of course there's always the early hours of the morning ....

Jim Morris said...

It's 06:00hrs a great time to have a tweet before breakfast. Hi Dickie Keep Smiling m8ty.

dickiearmour said...

Charlie, of course, the middle of the night is a perfect time too!!
:) thanks for adding your comment.

dickiearmour said...

Hi Jim!!
Absolutely - a tweet or 3 before breakfast is the perfect way to find time :)
Thanks for taking the time to comment :)

Dorrian Carrington said...

I use the time I used to spend on the post, going through the emails and checking on the Social Media.

Alison Armitage said...

Haven't found the perfect time yet but I will!

dickiearmour said...

Thanks Dorrian,
Pleased to hear you're finding the time :-)

dickiearmour said...

You MUST find the time! :)
I hope it's because you're too busy redesigning and decluttering houses!

Matt Pluchino said...

Great blog and your right; there are 288, 5 minute intervals in the day. We are obviously asleep for a lot of those but even if you count half of them we still have an abundance of time ; )

dickiearmour said...

Love it - 288, 5 minute intervals a day :) Brilliant! Loads of time for social media then.
Thanks for taking the time to comment.

Anonymous said...

If you're capable of measuring inputs and outputs you can quickly ascertain whether posting on SM is good for a specific business or not. Many sites I manage invest heavily into SM, some are surprised by the thin levels of site clickbacks.

When debating SM it would be better to discuss the bigger picture.

By utilising various techniques and constantly measuring it is possible to work out if SM posting is a worthwhile exercise, if it's not then maybe producing a website article would serve a better purpose.

SM junkies generally avoid the subject of test and measurement, why is this Dickie? Why don't we see screen shots of referring site traffic.

Anonymous said...


It's not very evangelistic to delete challenging posts, especially when screen shots have been taken, see you next week.


dickiearmour said...

As you can see Doug, your comments weren't deleted.
For some reason it was sat in the SPAM within Blogger.

dickiearmour said...

I wasn't debating the different methods of getting clickbacks.
I was merely explaining how easy it si to find the time to post messages.

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