5 Tools to Transform Social Media from a Sinkhole to a Generator

True or False: Social media is a bottomless sinkhole where time disappears and nothing productive ever happens.

Depending on the day, the answer could be true or false. Here are five ways to manage your social media time to make it more enjoyable, productive and profitable for you and your followers.

1. Be Choosey

Know who you want to talk to – and why.

After friends and family, prioritize who it’s important to reach. Are you looking for clients, referrals or associations? Why do you want to connect with them? The answer should be what’s in it for them, not for you. Use LinkedIn’s advanced search tool to track down everyone you want to connect with.

Tool: LinkedIn

2. Be Selective

Choose one, at the most two or three, platforms to be great at.

Hint: LinkedIn is a good first choice. Ask your best clients, connections, or even colleagues what platforms they hang out on. Then, listen and join in on the conversation. Keep in mind that images get shared more often than text. If you’re looking for an image-based social network, try Instagram. It’s an easy way to share images with Facebook and Twitter.

Tool: Instagram.com

3. Be on time

How do you know when to post social media updates so that they’ll reach the most people? How do you know what your people want to read? To get the answers, sign up for a free Buffer account. Buffer will automatically send your updates out at peak times. And, you’ll get analytics that measure interest.

Tool: BufferApp.com

4. Be consistent

Do you workout? How? Do you take a regularly scheduled class, go to a gym, dance to DVDs in your living room, or walk your dog a few times a day? However you exercise, you know that moving every day is important. So is checking in on social media. Set aside a time every day to exercise your social media routine. Using a dashboard like Hootsuite, you can manage multiple accounts all at once. You can even enter and schedule updates for future delivery.

Tool: Hootsuite.com

5. Be Powerful

This is relative. While you may think what you know is ordinary and common, to someone else you are the exact genius they’ve been looking for. Why? You have the answers to their questions. Think of social media as a power tool that enables you to share knowledge, calibrate positioning, increase profitability, measure results, and save time. Video is a wonderful way to convey your personality.

Tool: YouTube.com

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The founder of CoryWest Media and Chicago’s Social Media Club, Barbara is the creator of the 3D Marketing Transformations System. An innovative online marketer since 1996, Barbara won Nokia’s contest to represent the U.S. at Social Media Week Berlin. Whether they’re entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses, associations or corporations, Barbara consults with her clients on ways to quickly achieve their marketing goals to increase visibility, attract leads, grow business, and click with crowds using power full social media, content marketing, and PR strategies. CoryWest Media’s services include marketing audits, scalable content marketing plans, personal and company-wide LinkedIn makeovers, event marketing strategies and production, executive coaching, and customized live or online social media trainings. Her insurance industry experience includes creating sales training programs for a Dun & Bradstreet subsidiary and many Blue Cross Blue Shield plans. An international sales leadership speaker, Barbara is a professional member of the prestigious National Speakers Association [NSA] and serves on the NSA Illinois chapter’s board of directors. Corporations and conferences engage Barbara to present enlightening, energetic and effective programs. She’s presented at MDRT Annual Conference, Federal Reserve WEDGE Conference, Joint Commission, Bosch Power Tools, Sears, TechWeek Chicago, Social Media Week, CarnegieComm, IMEX Frankfurt, IACC Annual Conference, Association Forum, MPI Potomac, MPI Chicago, ISHMPR, Influencer Marketing Days and many more. Two best-sellers include Barbara’s work: “Success Secrets of the Social Media Marketing Superstars” [LinkedIn] and “Success Secrets of the Online Marketing Superstars” [PR].