Do I have to do social media?

I had a talk today with a client who had booked a social media consultation. She had said she wanted to figure out how to use social media, and what would be the easiest/simplest way for her to do it.

We started the conversation with a discussion about her blog project, and its history. She had suffered a terrible personal loss and had started this blog as a way to process her feelings, and to try to connect with others who may have been through a similar experience and wanted to know they’re not alone. She had worked with someone a while back to develop a “plan” and it included posting to various social media channels. She kept saying how “she doesn’t get social media” and wanted the simplest solution possible.

The more she talked about it, I was definitely getting the impression that she really wasn’t into the whole social media thing. When I asked her what her goals were for the site, she just wanted to share her story, her experience. She isn’t trying to make money or get a book deal (yet) or monetize the site in any way. I also got the sense that the social media conundrum was just causing interference in her motivation to publish on her blog. So I told her I had a new plan for her.

I told her to forget about social media.

Don’t get me wrong – when you’re building a list, growing your customer base, or looking to grow your community and audience, social media can definitely help. But none of those things are what this client is trying to accomplish. And the feeling that she had to “do” social media was causing her anxiety that was preventing her from even writing blog posts. Trying to figure out social media was hurting her and keeping her from achieving her goals – the exact opposite of what she wanted to happen.

When you’re listening to all the marketing gurus out there, it can often be overwhelming to try to follow all of the steps they’re all telling you to take. Especially if you’re trying to do it all at once – that’s a recipe for burnout that no one wants to feel.

Recently, I was listening to an episode of Amy Porterfield’s podcast. The episode was about finding the right business mentor, and in it she cautions against taking advice from too many people, as that can actually stunt your business growth. I think there’s a lot of people that fall into this trap without realizing it.

If you’re having trouble finding your footing as a blogger, and the anxiety about doing social media right is keeping you from blogging at all, then I’m going to tell you to take the same advice I gave my client – forget about social media. At least for now.

Social media is not needed for every business, or to reach every goal. Especially not at every stage. Right now, social media wouldn’t necessarily get her to her goals any faster. IN a few months, she might change her mind and want to start working social media into her flow – and that’s totally fine. Your beginning point doesn’t have to look the same as somebody’s middle, or even like anyone else’s beginning. Your journey is going to be unique to you. There might be similarities, but no two people are going to have the exact same experience. Do what feels right for you.

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