Social Media Anxiety: How to Deal

by Trish

Everyone has it lately. It’s a true epidemic, spreading like wildfire. How do you begin with social media?

1. You take a deep breath and ignore everyone. Seems sorta counterproductive, right? Nope. For one thing, if you’re only looking at what OTHERS are doing, you’re not figuring out what YOU should be doing. You’re letting someone else be your guide, not your own inner set of values and goals. So ignore your Twitter feed for today at least and go set down some social media goals of your own. Do you want to be just like that business over there who does this and this and this? Or do you want to do something like that author over that way who does this and that and a bit more of this? Write it down.

2. Really think about your goals for social media. It’s a huge temptation to use someone else’s business plan to formulate your business plan, but before you do that, stop. A fabulous mom-blogger created Simplemom.net and used Apartment Therapy.com as her model. But they don’t look the least bit alike. I’ve been a fan of Apartment Therapy for years, and also want them as my model, but my model won’t look a thing like Simplemom’s execution. (For one thing, I’m not a mom and my focus is not on simple-based how-to blogs.) Sure, I’m planning to do some of the same things as both AT and SM, but my execution will be different, and I have a few ideas and fellow dreamers who with me will take the direction of our site in another direction completely. Even if you’re inspired by someone else, write down how you will make it uniquely YOURS.

3. Pick one or two or three things to start with. Don’t try and do it all. I have a free report I send out to anyone who wants it (you can sign up on my web site) that outlines the top 20 or so social media tools out there to choose from. The idea of this free report wasn’t for everyone to immediately start using all those tools at once. The goal was to show them that there’s an organizational component to using social media. You plan, you begin small, you slowly grow. You pick a few, try them on for size, and move on if they don’t fit.

4. Put together an social media strategy action plan. This is your guide forward. You can plan out a month to a year in advance. Do you want to blog? How many blog posts a day or a month? Do you want to Twitter? What’s your goal with Twitter? How often do you Twitter? Not sure you want to tackle that yourself? I can help with that.

5. Check in once a month, once every three months, once every six months, once a year.
You should be tracking results: how much time does it take to accomplish what? Twitter followers? Blog rankings? Subscribers to your blog or eZine (two very different things, mind you)? Prospects who contacted you to do a project? This sort of analysis often paralyzes those who use social media (me included). That’s just because we don’t really want to sit down and think about it. Take time to think. Take time to adjust your action plan to fit what you want to do next.

Next time, thinking about Twitter.

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