Monday, February 20, 2012

Is Social Media Burnout A Rite Of Passage?

It's out of control.  You know what I'm talking about, I'm sure.  Always having to be 'on'.  After all, social media never sleeps, right?  You've decided that your business would be better served by becoming social and now it seems like it's taking on a life of it's own.  Social media doesn't recognize bankers hours, or holidays, or vacations.

It doesn't help that it seems like every day there's a new social platform being released which only adds to the noise we're already inundated with.  Dabney Porte mentioned in her post the importance of knowing your social media objectives and planning your social schedule.  This helps tame the beast in several ways:

Know what to say no to.
With so many new platforms and 'shiny new things' out there, it's easy to lose focus and spend a great deal of time being distracted.  By truly understanding your social media objectives, you position yourself to focus only on tools that will further those objectives.  This then makes it easier to NOT be so enamored with pretty new things that are just going to waste your business resources (read: time AND money AND sanity).

More is not better, consistency is.
I learned this the hard way.  The (incorrect) objective then was for me to be involved with every single new piece of technology out there and maximize each one to capacity.  Needless to say, I hit the wall rather quickly.  I have since learned to stay within my vertical and focus on blogging on things that I've experienced firsthand.  This allows me to work within a schedule that is comfortable for me while still adding value to my audience AND avoiding the burnout trap.  As Liz Strauss advises, everything in moderation.

Burnout is the enemy of creativity.
Just like tweeting while under the influence is a really bad idea, so is carrying out your social duties when you're burnt out.  Your audience can see it a mile away because your attempt at engagement will lack genuineness.  Save everyone the trouble and if you know you're burnt out, take time off.  Get recharged, even if it means getting behind.  Then, when you're back, scale back.  We all have our limits, only you know what yours are.

My weekend was spent recharging.  Were you able to do the same or were you 'working'?