What I Learned in My Semester of Social Media Marketing

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Taking the class Social Media Marketing has been a fun, challenging, and unique experience.  I got the chance to experiment with various social media platforms and learn about so many different things I didn’t even know existed.  Here were some of the most important things that I learned from this class.

Minimize and Optimize

You know the saying it takes a village?  Well that’s how it can often feel with social media.  Opening up and setting up account after account can be exhausting itself, but then you can’t just leave those accounts sitting there.  You must constantly be updating, sharing, and posting.  Social media is a baby that constantly needs to be fed.  If you have a lot of accounts, that can be a difficult task for just one person.

The best strategy is to find what accounts you like the best, what works well for you, and keep and maintain those accounts.  It is ultimately much better to be good at two or three social media accounts rather than flounder with ten accounts.

Try New Things

That’s the thing about social media, and really the Internet and technology in general, everything is constantly changing.  People are making new products, coming up with new ideas, tweaking what’s already out there.  While it may be virtually impossible to stay on top of all of that, it is important to read about what’s new, and when something piques your interest give it a try.  You might find a new tool or platform that you love more than what you have right now.

Trying new things also applies to what you are posting.  Try posting at different times in the day and posting different media.  Seeing what gets the most interaction is all part of learning and growing in social media.

Say Something

Social annotation is important.  What you say about what you are posting says more than what you are posting.  If you aren’t sharing what you learned, or at least loved, from whatever you are posting then are you really contributing?  Or are you just an automaton clicking and posting?

Be Present

Don’t let your accounts fall inactive.  This ties in with “Minimize and Optimize” up there.  If someone finds your Twitter but sees that you haven’t posted in months, that doesn’t look great and they aren’t going to follow you.  Keeping up activity is all part of the game.

It’s been suggested that posting on Twitter at least once a day, even if it is just a retweet, is a good way to maintain activity.  The other accounts should have a minimum activity at least once a week, hopefully more.

Keep Learning

I think that this was the part of social media that I found the most mind boggling, fascinating, and fun.  There is an insane amount of content out on the Internet to learn from.  It can be overwhelming, but all you have to do is start somewhere, just dive right in, and know that it’s okay that you don’t read it all (or know it all).  The amount of things that people have written is truly astounding, and it’s all there to help you learn and get better.  So use Feedly, Alltop, or whatever site you want to collect whatever interests you the most, and then read, read, read some more, and learn.  And of course, ultimately share the best stuff.

Take Away

Is social media hard?  Well it’s not exactly easy, and it certainly isn’t for everyone.  But with the way social media is constantly changing and influencing many other aspects of life, it is something important to know about.  And it is important to try your best to do it right.  Let social media reflect you in the best possible light.  Let it show that you know how to successfully maintain your accounts, where to get good readings and advice from, and that you have ideas and opinions about what you’re learning about.  Ultimately, learn from it, have fun with it, and don’t let it overwhelm you.

Does anyone have any social media lessons or stories that they would like to share?

Image Credit: Screenshot taken by Stefanie Kiteley (of her own phone) and edited on Instagram.