Do social media your way. Write your own “rules”

Many of my clients have a deep resistance to social media. They feel like there are “rules” they need to follow that don’t resonate with their values and way of being.

But they also have a deep desire to reach more people.

So they feel frustrated.

If this sounds like you, here’s what I suggest: Do social media your way while also measuring if how you’re choosing to use it is doing what you want.

This will require you to define what a successful use of social media looks like for you.

For example, let’s say you enjoy using Instagram and the people you want to reach are on there too. You love quotes and don’t like to spend a lot of time online, so you decide to post a quote twice a week for a month that’s related to an e-course you’re promoting. You define success as 10 people signing up for your e-course. You try out this approach while also tracking if using Instagram in this way is helping you to reach your goal. Each week you notice

  • How much engagement your posts have received (e.g. hearts, comments).
  • How many clicks back to your e-course landing page have come from Instagram (you can see this in your site’s analytics).
  • How many people have registered for your course.

If it seems like this approach is helping to fill your e-course, that’s great! You’re good to go. If not, it’s time to put your creative thinking cap back on and keep experimenting.

This is how social media has always been: a constantly evolving landscape you can contribute to in your own way. The only “right” way to use social media it to try, measure, learn, and try again. You get to make up the other stuff.

Social media has evolved through individual’s experiments. When someone hits upon an effective tool, or strategy, other people notice and follow. Chris Messina came up with hashtags, not Twitter. Jennifer Lee came up with the hashtag #selfie, not Instagram, or Facebook. The one thing they both have in common (I’ve met them) is that they are both very creative people.

If you’re struggling with how to stay aligned with your values and reach the people you want to reach with social media, try these reflection questions:

  1. What are the values I want to express through social media?
  2. Who are the people I want to reach through social media?
  3. Which social media tools light my creative fire?
  4. Which tools do the people I want to reach use?
  5. What is the goal I’m hoping to achieve through these tools?
  6. Given what lights my creative fire, what the people I want to reach use, and the goal I’m trying to achieve, what tools should I focus my time and energy on right now?
  7. What kinds of content could I create that would light my creative fire, be of value to my people, and help me achieve my goals?
  8. What frequency would light my creative fire, be of value to my people, and help me achieve my goals?
  9. What does a successful use of social media look like to me?
  10. How will I measure that success and how often?

A couple weeks ago, I posted about how I think a shift is coming in how we use social media that it is going to require Big Visionaries like you to think creatively about how you get the word out about your work.

One step towards adapting to this shift is to start experimenting with how to use social media in a way that feels good to you and is valuable to the people you want to reach. Keep trying, measuring, learning, failing, succeeding, and constantly creating in a way that is fun for you and helpful for your peeps.

Don’t let overwhelm, or frustration with the state of social media stop you from getting your message out.

Do social media your way. 

Define what success means to you.

You never know, you might become the next person to write “the rules.”


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