3 Things You Must Know – January 2018

Welcome to episode 382 of Hit the Mic with the Stacey Harris.

Welcome to 2018. I’m super stoked because it’s going to be a good year. I’m not one of those people who was like 2017 was the worst year ever. I feel like we all said that about 2016 and 2015 and all the other years too. I definitely had some things I didn’t love about 2017. There are some things I’m looking to change in 2018 but that’s part of growing as a human, and certainly growing as an entrepreneur.

That’s why like every month, we are starting this month off with the three things you must know about social media marketing because I want to get really, really clear for you guys where to put your focus, right now, today, to start seeing actual results, to stop feeling like you’re in an echo chamber of just nonsense online and certainly so you don’t feel like you’re contributing to it. That’s what I want you to focus in on these things today, this month. Let this sort of be your roadmap as you work through January 2018. Woo hoo. All right?

As always this show, this episode, this podcast, all that is Hit the Mic is brought to you by Hit the Mic Backstage. The cool thing about Hit the Mic Backstage right now is we just released last month and entirely new Facebook training, so the whole guide is updated and there’s going to be some more stuff coming to it very soon, just as a, between you and me. Don’t tell the others.

Then in January, we’re rolling out the Instagram guide. It’s going to be a multi-module program, all about how to use Instagram effectively. I’m stoked because this has been highly requested, so I’m ready to finally bring it to you guys. Also, right now, you may remember last month I did a free training about building your 30-day social media strategy. Basically building your plan, an executable document for 30 days on social and here’s the deal. I take my free replays down within like, never more than a week. Usually, it’s more like three days. Guess what? You can actually get that training now on backstage. If you missed it or if you want to relive it, join us backstage. Hitthemicbackstage.com is the place to go for that one. Yeah. That’s it. So check that out.

Let’s jump into the show now. Sound good?

The number one thing I want to talk about in January is ads.

Because here’s the deal. 2017 and 2016 and 2015 brought us a lot, all caps A LOT of changes when it comes to the newsfeed and the algorithm and being able to get content in front of your audience organically. Even as recently as December we saw them cracking down and actually announcing that this was going to be working against you. Engagement baiting, meaning a strong call to like, comment or share. Certainly and these are the ones that drive me crazy and I’m so excited but when they engagement bait by saying thumbs up if you like picture A and a smiley face if you like picture B. Those drive me nuts, but those kinds of things, including, and this is going to include people running giveaways.

So if you’re running a giveaway and all they have to do is comment on Facebook, you’re going to have a hard time getting that into the newsfeed organically because it’s considered engagement bait. What is our response to this? Is our response to this that we run away from Facebook and Facebook is trying to screw us and Facebook is evil and la, la, la, la, la? The answer to that is no, and I hope you actually said like, “No, Stacey, of course not.”

What it does mean though is if we have those kinds of posts or we’re trying to get something in front of our audience and this is going to be the case for a lot of your content these days, you might need some ad support. If you want to do a giveaway, you might need to pay to get it in front of your audience. If you want to get more engagement, you might think about looking at an engagement focused ad campaign.

Facebook is fantastic because so many audiences are already there. It’s also fantastic because they have a really, really, really incredible ad component, and as business owners, as entrepreneurs, and really as marketers, we have been spoiled for many, many years with free marketing on social. There is still a component that is not a pay to play structure but there’s still an investment. There’s an investment in your time. There’s an investment in the person you’re paying to do it for you. There’s an investment in the time of building your strategy. There’s a time investment in engagement and scheduling and all of those pieces, but also if you want to see massive results, there’s going to be an investment of money.

Here’s the deal. That’s actually awesome because never in the history of marketing have we been able to add, send ads to the exact right audience at the exact right time, in a place we know they’re going to be at such a low cost. Right? This is not a super bowl commercial. This is not a billboard on the freeway. This is not a radio commercial during drive time. All those are very expensive and what I like to call sort of like fingers-crossed marketing. Like I hope the right person sees this and then does something. No, that’s not what we have to do anymore. That’s epic.

Yes, in January, this month, right now, I want you to start getting serious about looking at what running Facebook ads looks like for you. Now I really hope that’s not hitting the boost button to every single post on your page, because that’s not an effective ad strategy but it’s got to be something. It’s got to be a campaign for engagement. It’s got to be driving traffic. It’s got to be something. It also doesn’t have to be $100,000 or $10,000 or $1,000. You can get started really, really, really budget friendly, inexpensively, however you want to frame that.

I encourage you to sit down with someone who knows about ads. I’ve got some time on my calendar if you want to sit down with me one on one in January. Or talk, you know talk to somebody who’s going to run them for you on your team. Maybe you have a VA in place already who has that capability. Talk about adding that to your agreement. Maybe it’s you want to DIY them. Great. Check out the Facebook ads training in backstage. It’s brand freaking new, but it’s time to get serious about investing and getting eyes on some of your content.

Now that doesn’t mean that you’re never going to have sort of any organic traffic again. There’s going to be an organic no-ad component for sure, but guess what? It’s going to do better because your overall strategy is more solid. Also, you’re going to start getting people who are paying attention to your content, engaging, sharing, liking, clicking. That’s what’s going to help your organic stuff as well. Okay?

Number two, make sure you have on your calendar when you do your social media stuff.

This is one of the things I see most often with clients as an issue, when they’re feeling overwhelmed with what they need to do with social, is they don’t actually have a time for it on your calendar or they don’t actually have a person on their team who handles it. Wherever you are, maybe it’s having somebody on your team, maybe it’s having a VA who does it, great. Maybe it’s just you and you’re doing it and you’re rocking the solo-preneur thing. Fantastic. Wonderful. Where is it on your calendar? Schedule it.

I went through B-school several years ago now and one of my favorite things that Marie Forleo says is, “if you don’t schedule it, it’s not real”. That is an insane amount of true and it’s a lesson I learned over and over and over again. But, set some time to do it. If you’re somebody who likes theme days and you want to have a social media marketing day, awesome. But you’re also going to want to put some time on your calendar on other days to engage. That day may take care of your foundation stuff but it’s not going to help you from an engagement standpoint.

If you’re somebody who likes to sort of have a habit of doing something at the same time every day, then great. Every day at 9:00 am or every day at 2:00 pm or whatever it is for you, put a few minutes on your calendar to get in and engage on social. I actually have on my calendar, not just my social media networks, but some memberships that I’m a part of. Masterminds that I’m a part of, so that I go in and check on those Facebook groups or those private forums and I network in those spaces because that’s an important part of how I get business. It’s an important part of how I grow my clientele, is I go and I be of service and I answer questions and I connect and guess what? That means that when questions come up, that I can answer, people tag me.

When people come across something they need, they ask me for it or they hire me or they join backstage. Oh my gosh, see how that works? Make time on your calendar to do that. Don’t just wait for it to happen. The most important part of that is respect the end time as much as the start time. If you have 30 minutes every day at 2:00 pm, then that ends at 2:30. I don’t care what’s happening. It ends at 2:30 because when it doesn’t or when you see where it’s three and four and five days where it’s just impossible for you to be done at 2:30, you didn’t get anything done yet. You were scrolling. You were not engaging. You were not seeing actual action. You were not leveraging that time. You were scrolling.

I love ya, but that’s what was happening. So respect that end time as much as the start time and respect this in the same way you would a client. If this is something you want to see results with, you’ve got to do the work. Okay? All right.

Number three, check in on your wheres and by that I mean where are you spending your social time?

Where are you spending your content marketing time? What kind of podcast are you pitching? What kind of guest post are you pitching? What social media sites are you spending time on? What social media sites are you providing content for? Make sure those are still in align-ment, in alignment. I don’t know why I made that two words. In alignment, with who your ideal clients are and where they’re spending time. Because sometimes that evolves. Sometimes that changes. Maybe your ideal client changed and you didn’t realize that this group spent time in a different place. Or maybe this is the year you want to start really leveraging LinkedIn for the B-to-B side of your business, even if you’re a B-to-C person primarily.

Whatever it is, check in. Take some time to evaluate where you’ve been spending time. Look at what those options are and then look at where you want to be spending time instead. Remember it does not, the answer is never everywhere. It is not necessary for you to be in all the places all the time. Choose two to start with. Two primary networks, and then once you get those on point, choose two secondary networks, where you don’t spend quite as much time but you’re leveraging them as well and they sort of support your primary networks.

It does not have to be all the places. Pinterest might not make sense for you. Facebook might not make sense for you, which, if that’s the case, don’t waste your time fighting with the algorithm. Instagram might not make sense for you, but LinkedIn might be the cat’s pajamas for you. Evaluate where you are, and again, if you’re having a struggle getting to where you need to spend time, ask. Get support. There are a ton of people who have this information in their heads and they’re happy to share it with you. I happen to be one of those people. Book some time with me. Join us Backstage and ask us in the private forum, but get help. Don’t struggle through this alone, hoping you figure it out. That is when you feel burned out. That’s when you feel overwhelmed and that’s when it feels more like noise than content because you’re just kind of putting things out so you don’t drown. That’s not a good place to be. It doesn’t feel good and quite frankly it doesn’t work.

So, get the support you need. Cool?

That’s all I got for you today. I am super stoked for this year. We are going to have our, jeesh, four year anniversary of this podcast this year. We’re going to hit 400 episodes in a couple of months. We are going to celebrate the three year anniversary of Hit the Mic Backstage later this year. Yeah. There’s some really cool stuff happening in this world. I’m super grateful that you’re a part of it. Thank you for hanging out with me once again this week. Happy New Year and I will see you next time and of course, I’ll see you Backstage. Bye.

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