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Simplify your social strategy

So, what’s your plan for Snapchat? How are you reaching an audience on Pinterest? Have you given any thought to Periscope or Facebook Live?

Before you stress out over the next social media network fad that will rapidly steal our attention, then fade as quickly as it grew (we’re looking squarely at you, Ello and Peach), take comfort in this one thing.

You don’t have to be everywhere.

Social media can be overwhelming. It’s difficult — even for those who work in it every day — to keep up with everything. Besides the new popup distractions, there are changes (seemingly daily) to the ones that are oh-so-familiar. Just within the last week there have been announcements that Instagram is moving to an algorithm instead of a timeline and Twitter isn’t going to 10,000 characters after all (at least for now) but instead very quietly switched users to an algorithm of its own.


So, instead of driving yourself crazy trying to keep up, try starting out by focusing on just one platform. If you’re a small craft retailer, you may want to try Instagram first. Or if you’re more of a B2B operation, you may find more luck on LinkedIn.

Whatever your platform of choice, stick with it. Don’t get distracted. Be consistent in your posting. Pour your energy into making that one channel extremely successful for you.

Once you’ve got one channel up and running, then think about adding a second. But realize that depending on your industry, you may never need a LinkedIn or Instagram presence. If a platform doesn’t make sense as a place you can potentially reach customers or grow your business, then why spend time there at all?

Because here’s what happens. If you jump around at the latest and greatest social trend or have a fear of missing out because you’re not experimenting with the social flavor of the week, you wind up spreading yourself too thin. And then you’re not really successful anywhere.

It’s better to be really good at one channel than to be mediocre (or worse, ineffective) on many channels.

Even the experts agree with this strategy.

In an interview published this week on Social Media Today, Joe Pulizzi, the founder of Content Marketing Institute, said that focusing on one channel at a time is the key to success.

“In the beginning I became so distracted about trying a little bit of everything that I wasn’t great at anything,” he said. “Own something amazing and build an audience on that platform. Then (and only then) should you diversify to other platforms.”

So, before you stress out over what you’re going to do on Yik Yak or WeChat, carefully consider your audience and take comfort in the fact that the one channel (or two or three) that you’re focusing on will serve you just fine.


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