One of the things that influence our private lives and our business is our day-to-day habits. In this blog post, you'll learn about 3 unhelpful social media habits that you shouldn't bring into the new year with you.
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Last year, I wrote a similar blog post on social media habits, so if the habits in this one are just not enough for you, go check out the other one here.
One of my all-time favorite non-fiction books is Atomic Habits by James Clear because it talks about all the very small (or atomic 😉) habits that we implement in our daily life that have a huge impact on what our life looks like, what goals we can achieve and if become a better person. If you haven't read it yet, put it on your TBR list for 2023 - you won't regret it, it's a fantastic book with a lot of practical ideas and tips. The gist of the book is that every little habit shapes your life and determines if you achieve the goals that you have set for yourself whether that is in your private life or in your business. And that's why I think it's really important to do an audit of your daily habits and see if they still serve you.
I'm a big advocate of implementing habits into your daily life that YOU find helpful rather than picking up habits that other people do. Just because you have certain habits, it doesn't automatically mean that they will make you successful. I just wanted to leave this thought with you so that you can put on your critical thinking hat and determine for yourself if these habits serve you or not.
But now, let's get into the three social media habits that I think you should leave in 2022:
1) Obsessing about your followers:
This is probably something that 90% of the business owners do that I come across in coaching sessions and it's a hard one to kick.
I don't want to deny that having a certain number of followers has a positive effect on your social media because it certainly does. From my experience, accounts that have more followers also have more reach on their posts and on their reels - at least usually, but not always. I have also already worked on accounts that had a few thousand followers but had abysmally small reach due to what they had done with these accounts in the previous months.
It's also easier to spark an initial interest in your profile for someone who visits your profile if you have 50,000 followers compared to when you have 500 but your follower count is only one of the things that people will consider when they come to your profile. Having a lot of followers might give that initial spark, but then, if your content isn't great or you're not engaging a lot, you will be losing those followers very quickly again as well.
People also think having more followers means making more sales but that couldn't be more wrong. An increase in followers, especially a very quick increase, for example from a viral video, is something that you need to know how to handle. You will not only get more interested followers but you will also get more people who write mean comments, you will get more spam messages, you will get more people copying your content, and potentially even people impersonating your whole account.
"But Hanna, that's all not too bad if I get other advantages from it”.
That is what you are thinking now but once you are actually in that situation you will think very differently about it. I have already worked with clients who have grown very quickly & they often tell me they wish they had grown slower & more sustainably. They suddenly had so many more followers and their engagement dropped off massively. Now they are stuck with very low engagement and that is just incredibly hard to get up again to a decent rate.
Having a smaller community behind your brand is not always a bad thing. The connections that you make in a smaller community are much more authentic.
The thing is also, if you don't know how to sell to 100 people you also don't know how to sell to 10,000 people. If you lack that knowledge, then more followers are not going to help you. Even if your content is great at moving people towards a conversion, if your product hasn't been researched well, your website isn't great or the price is just way off, you will also not make any sales. So before you focus on getting more followers, make sure that you know how to sell your products and that your product is actually what your ideal client needs and wants.
Obsessing over how many new people followed you or how many people unfollowed you (even worse) is only going to make you frustrated.
I would like you to do 3 things instead:
As a first step, I want you to do a thorough analysis of your content to see which has performed the best (in the last six months). Then focus on creating more of that kind of content for at least a month and see how it goes.
Along with that, instead of checking your follower count every single day (or every week), I want you to do an analysis once a month - that is more than enough. This will help you focus on other metrics as well and not obsess about your followers every single day.
And lastly, I want you to engage with the followers that you already have and activate them. I can guarantee you that there are people in your audience who are interested in your products or in your services but just need a little nudge to convert.
2) Looking at your phone & social media first thing in the morning:
I want you to stop looking at your phone and social media first thing in the morning. It's important to give your brain a few minutes without the dopamine rush of social media.
When we check our phones and especially social media first thing in the morning, our brain depletes its dopamine stash and, from that moment on, it craves more and more. This means that throughout the day you will have a hard time putting your phone away, staying concentrated, and being productive. I have recently read a really good book on neuroscience that also focuses on the effects of social media and your phone on your brain (The Neuroscience of Self-Love by Alexis Fernandez-Preiksa. A great read that I can definitely recommend if you're interested in learning more about this topic.
So what should you do instead?
I think that that is up to you but here's what I do: I make it easy for my sleepy, tired self to not fall back into this habit by not keeping my phone in our bedroom. It's much easier to avoid a not-so-helpful habit if the thing that triggers your brain is not next to you.
The next step then would be to establish an alternative habit. For me, that is doing some breathing exercises, reading, or just chatting with my boyfriend while we have breakfast. Try it out and let me know how it goes!
3) Following random advice on social media:
I have to say this one really grinds my gears. Not only because these "social media gurus" make a living out of giving people bad advice but also because I know there are so many fantastic businesses out there that struggle to be seen on social media and don't get the help they need.
You have to realise that these social media gurus will only give you very superficial “advice” so that you give them a follow and eventually, buy into their program to make money off of you. Most of them are not qualified whatsoever but will market themselves with things like “I grew my Instagram account to 100,000 followers in three months” or “I made $1,000,000 off of Instagram last year. Let me show you how you can achieve the same!”. Sentences like that scream RED FLAG 🚩🚩🚩.
This is what I would like you to do instead:
Please unfollow people who use catchphrases like that. You cannot verify any of their claims and having a certain number of followers or making a certain amount of income does not qualify someone to teach you how to do successful social media marketing.
Advice that you see on social media is rarely personalised to your situation and your business. If you follow random bits and pieces of advice that you see online, you will very likely get stuck in one place. Nobody online gives away their best strategies for free. The advice might be free but it can potentially cost you a lot of time and money because you will follow the advice that is not going to help you achieve your goals. What you should do instead is work with someone who can give you the right advice right away so you don't waste any time or money and actually get where you want to go.
Nowadays, everyone can call themselves social media expert. But there are a few credentials that you can take into account before you consider working with someone.
Do they have any official credentials? I have a Master's degree in marketing and an official Meta certification that shows you that I am officially a certified Community Manager and that I know what I am talking about when it comes to marketing.
Do they have relevant experience? You don't only want to look at general experience but also experience in your niche or a similar type of business. If someone has only worked with product-based businesses so far, they might struggle with promoting a service-based business because promoting services is very different from promoting products.
Do they have any testimonials or results from previous clients?
If all of these things check out, you can be quite sure that they will be able to help you.
I am confident that I can help you with personalised strategies that work for your business. if you feel the same, please reach out so you can hit the ground running in 2023!