Monday, March 20, 2017

How I Use Social Media

At times I find myself running around in circles here on the blog and in my social media. Chatting a little bit here and a little bit there. Publishing a blog post, dropping a picture in my IG feed, answering a request on Facebook and replying to a sweet message in my email inbox. It can get quite confusing as of where I spoke to who and what was said on which platform.

In the old days when I only did the blog, it was easier. It was only one place where I shared my stories and pictures. Only one room to have conversations in. It was pretty straight forward. I woke up in the morning, checked my inbox, read the new comments and messages and replied. Easy peasy. But it is not like that anymore and the flow of information, messages and conversation here and there, and everywhere (Dr Seuss...) has made me want to reflect upon my habits on How I Use Social Media.

Inspired by the Blogging Your Way course that I am currently taking, I look at this as a spring clean of my social media habits and I have broken it all down in hope to find a way of structuring myself a little bit better. I also want to invite you to take part of the discussion and tell me about your habits and what works for you. It would be so helpful for me and I know you are full of advice, tips and tricks for me to take part of. So, I'm curious to know:

• How do you communicate and connect in social media?
• What is your favorite platform?
• When do you communicate?
• How much time to you spend on connecting online?

My quick answer to the above is that I blog, use Instagram and Facebook and I'm intrigued and curious about podcasts, although I'm not really watching any crafty podcasts yet. I also use Pinterest but not very often. I have never tweeted on Twitter and will never do. It is just not my thing.

I love all my platforms for different reasons:

MY BLOG is my kitchen, the heart of all my social media. This is where real conversation and sharing takes place. Kick your shoes off (or keep them on for that matter), sit down, get comfortable and have a coffee. Lets laugh, cry and get really serious... or not. Let me show you my latest project! You can stay for as long as you want to. I'm delighted to have you visiting.

MY INSTAGRAM is when I bump into you on the street. Sometimes just to say hi because I'm in a rush, but sometimes we stop for a while and share some phrases about weather, the weekend or what's up. In any situation it keeps me up to date with what you have on your agenda, what project you're working on, where your travels are taken you and how your season changes. It is also my greatest marketing tool. By far.

MY FACEBOOK is a link in between my followers and my blog. It's a news feed informing you when new blog posts are up and I also share pictures from my Instagram there, to keep you in the loop. I find it very easy to have conversations on my Facebook page and I have a loyal crowd of ladies I chat with regularly. It would be lovely to meet them all one day.

MY PINTEREST is a sleeping beauty. I never really got into this pinning thing, as I always feared I would fall into the rabbit hole of pinning away hours of my life instead of living it. However, I do use Pinterest as a search engine, inspiration tool and a place to look at beautiful things and I should probably look over my boards and start using it more frequently from a business point of view.

I FOLLOW PEOPLE mainly through one of their platforms, or maybe two. I might follow a person on her blog, Instagram and Facebook, but hardly ever do I actively VISIT all those platforms. I would say that I on first hand check their Instagram account, secondly their Blog and rarely ever their Facebook page. I feel that one is either an Instagram lover or a Facebook follower. A little bit like "coffee or tea" or "PC or Mac", you just happen to like one media more than the other, and I just happen to be an IG girl.

THE TIME I SPEND ON SOCIAL MEDIA varies. I check my own blog every day (comments, replying, stats etc). I read a couple of blog posts a day from my collection of favorite bloggers, but I don't read everything every day. When I started doing Instagram I checked it at least 20 times a day. Today I can even skip a day or two but most of the time I check it in the morning, at lunch and in the evening or when I myself decide to publish something. I also check my Facebook on a daily basis and respond to comments. I only visit Pinterest a few times a month for the above mentioned reason.

Would you like to hear more about How I Use Social Media, and if so, what would you like to know? It is all about finding balance and not letting online life take over. At the same time I am a small business owner and a part of my business is to be social online... It is a tricky one and I'm looking forward to hear your input on this.



KĂ€rlek
Annette


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11 comments :

  1. So much choice isn't there, it's hard. I am a blog person mostly, I think I get a better feel for people there, rather than another picture of a flower and a short line. It took me a while, but I do use Twitter now. It's how I keep up to date with environmental and wildlife news. It's very different from my blog; almost no-one from my blog knows I'm there or follows me. I don't put fresh stuff on there, although I do re-tweet things. I think of it like a newspaper, but one that's mostly filled with stories about the things I'm interested in. So when I'm on Twitter I'll be reading in-depth stories about the environment, not just short tweets. I'm in 2 or 3 Facebook groups for writers which are useful, but I'm really not a Facebook person. Like you I have a few Pinterest boards, but I use them purely for myself as a sort of magazine reference place for inspiration. No-one from the blog world has seen them, and I don't add to them that often.

    Social media is something I've been thinking about a lot as I try to form a writing business. Where should I be? Where are the potential clients? I haven't taken the plunge yet, but I know I will have to one day. I think I will probably choose one and try and tackle it more thoroughly, otherwise I would be overwhelmed. LinkedIn is something I loathe - it reminds me of being a lawyer too much I think, everyone bigging up their expertise, it's ghastly. So I shall try and avoid that one if I can! CJ xx

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    1. Hi CJ
      Agree on LinkedIn... To much business over there. Not my arena at all. Thanks for sharing your social media experiences with me. Very interesting read. I sent you a PM with some thought about your writing.
      x
      Annette

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  2. Hi Annette. It is always good to think about one's social media habits, it can take up your entire life! My main social media interest is my personal blog. I follow and read other blogs using the Blogger Feed, Bloglovin or Email, depending on the options given on the blog I am interested in. I have an Instagram account but hardly ever use it. I have posted maybe six times ever. I find it too fleeting but sometimes check-in because so many of my favourite bloggers have shifted their main interest to IG and I would miss their friendship otherwise. I don't like Pinterest or Twitter although I have a Twitter account, which I keep active because our schools use it to communicate important dates etc. FB I use to keep in touch with friends who don't read my blog. It appears (after re-reading what I just wrote) that I use different social media for different parts of my life. I am not a small business owner, 'just' a personal blogger. I think if I had a small business, I would use all platforms to be able to reach everyone with their different platform preferences. I'd probably have a timetable of sorts to prevent social media taking over my life. For example only engage with social media at set times. This works well for my own job. You could use a tool like Toggl (https://www.toggl.com) to keep track of your activities initially and to get an idea how much time you really spend with each of your tasks, it might help to establish a healthy pattern of social media engagement. I use this tool when I work on different projects for example, to ensure time allocation is as needed. I fool myself easily otherwise. Good luck with your journey. x

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    1. Hi Christina
      Thank you for sharing. Very interesting indeed. And I agree with you, we tend to use different platforms for different reasons. Will have a look at that Toggl thingy. Sounds interesting.
      x
      Annette

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  3. Good to think about why and how and when you want to use social media. And with some structure you don't get stress. I love blogs and Pinterest and hate Twitter and FB for all the advertisements and volatility. Also I want to do some things great, instead of a lot of social media things half as good as it could be.

    Have a great day, Margaret

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    Replies
    1. Good input Margaret! I agree with you. I rather do good content on a couple of platforms than sloppy on half a dozen. Thanks for engaging.
      xx
      Annette

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  4. Interesting post Annette, as always 🙂 I think this is an area I need to look at and evaluate as I too find myself pulled all over the place with it. Have you heard of Hootsuite? Might be worth a look. I have it but havenr started using it effectively yet. Something I must do. I'm an IG girl too, I can't get on with fb, although I do use it. I don't really get on with twitter and don't really use Pinterest any more. I love my blog but I have to say, I'm seriously drifting more and more towards podcasting now which I'm now sure is a great thing but I'm enjoying it so, for now I'm just seeing how it goes.

    S x

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    Replies
    1. Hi Sandra
      I've never heard of Hootsuite, I have to check it out and see what it is. I've noticed you're leaning towards the podcasting lately and I think that is great! It is all about finding our own platforms and channels that works for us and having fun is the core of it all. Keep up the good work my lovely.
      xx
      Annette

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  5. Interesting, Annette.
    I'm a Facebook animal :-) I loved it from day 1 and use it very strictly as in I have a relatively small friends list and those are mostly all people who are actively involved on Facebook. Many of my close friends and family members are not there. I manage two large groups and have met so many great new friends there that I meet up with as often as I can!
    After a holiday away from my PC I more or less faded away from Pinterest, which is good, as it can be a deep, dark pit. Now I Pin when I'm actively looking for something. I like Instagram and try to keep that feed relatively small as well, then it's easier to keep up with who you really want, although I might get sidelined by a comment on someone's feed, then cross over to have look, and a further look, and ... That's also where I browse when I'm waaaaaiiiting...at school, at sport, at Kumon etc :-D

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  6. My input probably won't be of much use as I do not have a business but I am a consumer although being retired I don't consume as much as when I had a family. I would like to have an online business someday but now I am focusing on moving house so it will have to wait. I try to blog every day, I usually reply/visit my 'favs' in the morning with my 2nd cup of coffee. If you're on my sidebar you are one of my 'favs' and you are! I set up an IG account but rarely go there as I like the more personal connection with blogs and I don't have a cell phone so I can't post on IG. I look at Pinterest about once a week as I have so many pins already but it is my biggest source of inspiration and I follow you on there. Blogging is my only social interaction as I am pretty much a recluse where I live. FB was a biggy at one time until I realized how much time I wasted and would get 'sucked in' before I knew it so I stay off of it now. Right now, at my stage, I want to give my blog viewers what I most value most from them, interaction, inspiration, current projects, books, recipes, tips, and links to places where they can get more of the same. Your blog has always attracted me because of your crochet and your beautiful designs and color work and also your lifestyle. If I were to make one suggestion to you it would be to podcast. The exposure is phenomenal and right now they are all about knitting and I know there are many of us who would love to see more podcasts on crochet and sewing. A podcast is very different than a tutorial although podcasters frequently offer those too. I usually sit down in the evening and watch podcasts not regular t.v. I like the ones that podcast weekly on the same day so, like a t.v. program I have something to look forward to. All my friends watch them and it has been such a wonderful thing for 'makers' to finally have something on the screen we can enjoy. They usually have a Ravelry group and CALs or KALs and one who is a knitter has a QAL (quilt along) and another knitting podcaster has had some SALs (sew along) for garments. They receive all kinds of gifts and notoriety and loyal followers. They have even commented that it is much more fun than blogging and although it is more time consuming it is only weekly and not daily and the audience is much bigger! There are audio and video but in my mind the video is better. There is a void when it comes to crochet so I think you would be very successful. Just a thought!

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  7. Being a boss is hard! There are a lot of responsibilities to tend to, and sometimes you wish there were 5 of you. You have done a great job at using social media as tools to help you and your business. Maybe it's time you give yourself a break and invest in help. There are companies that help with promoting and emails.

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Thank you so much for visiting my world. I love reading your comments and I do my utterly best to respond to questions and sweet messages. Thank you again for popping by.

KĂ€rlek
Annette

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