Why I Never Panic When Social Media Changes, And You Shouldn't Either

Welcome, welcome, welcome, episode 445 of the show. I’m really stoked because we’re going to sort of continue on a conversation we had in the Myspace episode we had a couple of weeks ago, where I talked about the importance of my own learnings. And I dropped a couple of pieces, really I shared the background of how I learned everything I know in Myspace, but also I shared a little bit about what the lessons were.

And today is really an extension of that because we have seen some changes happening. This is not new, so everyone calling for the end of social media, no, this is the beginning of the next chapter. And I want to talk a bit about the importance of remembering that this is rented real estate, this is land someone else owns, and someone else controls, and it’s our jobs to use it in the best way we can, but it’s also our jobs to make sure that we are protected. And not just from hacking and things of that nature, which we’re going to be talking about in an episode here in a couple of weeks I’ve got coming out, but really what I want to talk about is, how do we make sure that, through all of these changes, we have the ability to connect with our audience? We have the ability to drive traffic to our website, we have the ability to generate content that’s valuable.

Here is really the takeaway.

Nice and early in the show, right? These are tools. And when you build a plan, when you build a strategy, when you know how and why you’re using these tools, the tool is plug and play. The tool is honestly a little bit irrelevant because it doesn’t matter if I’m using Facebook, or Instagram, or LinkedIn, or Twitter, whatever, what matters is that I know I am talking to these people, I’m sharing this thing, and this is how I share that content. This is the voice of my brand, this is the experience I’m creating inside of this environment.

And that’s what I want you to really be looking at, as you go through your own strategies. Don’t spend so much time going, “Okay, I’m going to use Facebook, how many posts should I post per day?” Or, “Okay, I’m on Instagram, how many posts do I post per day?” Or, “What needs to be in stories and what needs to be in grid?” I want you to take a break from that, I want you to take a step back from that, and I want you to instead look at how am I, in whatever tool I’m in, creating conversations with people who follow me here?

That’s done by creating a strategy.

That’s done by knowing what you say, and when you say it, and where you say it. So that’s what I want you to focus in on as you move through building your plan. If you want support, reach out, but the best way to get started with this is just to sit down and start looking at some numbers, start looking at some stuff.

And so that’s what I want to sort of assign you as homework today, I want you to spend some time this week looking at, where are you currently getting business from? And take the social out of this, let’s just remove the labels from things. I want to know, in the entirety of your business, online, offline, social, email, content, networking, referrals, upsells from current clients, whatever it is. I’m unattached, okay? I want you to tell me all of the places you get business.

Because here’s the reality: generally speaking, the best thing we do online are iterations of the things we do in person. And that’s why I’m a big believer that people who spend a lot of time doing the in-person work, that could be regular networking, like a coffee or a meetup or whatever, that could be events, that could be retreats, that could be conferences, that could be … I’m lucky enough to live in a place where a lot of people travel to here to go to other conferences so that I get to meet people who I’ve met online. Wherever those are, I think people who make the time for that stuff, and who then use social media to support those relationships, and they use in-person to support social media relationships, they see the best results online.

And I think that’s because we’re treating this online thing the same way we are the offline thing.

And again, that’s where we come back to the tool, the location. It’s irrelevant, it’s not a factor. This is why when the algorithm changes I don’t freak out. Because, essentially, the rules in the meeting room just changed, the fact that I’m going to be able to come here with other people hasn’t. It’s just maybe going to impact how I show up in the room. Okay? And if a meeting location closes I don’t care, I’ll go to a meeting at a different location.

And this is why we do two things. And this is really what I wanted to dig into today. So after you’ve done that work, factor in these two things. Diversify your online time. Facebook: not a marketing plan. Twitter: not a marketing plan. Instagram Stories: not a marketing plan. These are all pieces of your marketing, they’re not a whole plan. And so, sit down and look at how you can diversify what you have that’s working into other places.

So maybe for you, getting up onstage and teaching works really well. Great, how can we bring that online? Maybe it’s Facebook Lives, maybe it’s how you structure your podcast, maybe it’s a regular web series on YouTube, maybe it’s Stories and IG Live, or IG TV. How do you bring that same energy though, to the online space?

Maybe you’re somebody who does really well in one-on-one conversations. Then on Instagram stories be inviting people into your DMs. Also, treat your Instagram Stories like a two person conversation, or a three person conversation. I treat this podcast that way, I genuinely sit here imagining only one person, and that’s you, listens to this show. Now when I go and read my numbers that proves to not be true, there are many, maybe of you, thank goodness. And I’m grateful for each and every one of them, but you’re my favorite.

But I want you to create content with that energy, because, for me, I do really well in small groups. The place I make, and this is going to sound really callous, but it’s what I want you to be aware of, and I want you to be this comfortable in saying it, the place I make money when I travel is in bars. I know that if I can get somebody to sit down with me at a table, have a drink, have some food, we’re golden. Because I can actually connect with them, I can actually talk to them, and I can be in it with them for a little while.

And so I always, always, always, always make time when I travel to do that with people. When I was in New York earlier this year I attended an event, I made sure I went to dinner with some clients afterwards, because I was cementing that relationship. Because we’d only ever met in person, and so I really wanted to make sure we had that over-dinner connection. So we had dinner, me and two clients, just us. I met with one of our agency clients, we had lunch, just her and I, because I wanted to cement that relationship with some intimate, one-on-one time with them.

When I travel to conferences and I meet people during the day I don’t, “Hey, here’s my card,” I “hey” and I chat for a few minutes, and I’ll say, “Hey, let’s meet up and let’s have lunch today.” Or, “Let’s meet up and we’ll have dinner tonight,” or, “Hey do you want to have a drink before bed, or after the event before dinner?” I will find ways to create that time for me and a small group of people, because I know I do really well there, I know it’s profitable for me, because I like showing up that way.

So, when I come online I do the same thing. I create Instagram Stories like only one person’s watching. I create this podcast like only you are listening. And it works. If that’s what works for you, great. If you’re somebody who is seeing that your Instagram Stories do really well, find ways to repurpose that content. Expand on it in podcast episodes, repurpose it into social content for other places.

This is one of the best things we do for one of our clients, we don’t actually write a ton of content for her, she creates these freaking killer Instagram Stories, incredible Instagram Stories, and we transcribe them and tweak them. I mean they are edited, because sometimes Instagram Stories don’t perfectly translate into a grid post, or Facebook post, or LinkedIn post, or whatever, but we extend the conversation. We take her most popular ones, the ones that get the most engagement, the best retention, and we say, “Okay, here’s what the podcast is next quarter.” Right? Look at where you’re doing really well, and adapt it to other places, thus diversifying how you provide content, diversifying where you’re showing up, but also maintaining that impact, maintaining that connection of the thing you already know that’s working.

I think this is the thing I am most frustrated by, when it comes to social media changes, when it comes to changes in these rented areas, is instead of saying, “Great, here’s what we know is working really well, how do we evolve this, how do we make this change?”, we do one of two things: we throw baby out with the bathwater and we say the whole things sucks, and it doesn’t work instead, or we look for the person with the shiniest object, that tells us that it’s the next big solution, and we go running full speed after it.

Neither of these are good solutions. What I want you to do instead is I want you to look at, “Cool, how do I evolve with this tool? How do I make sure that I show up in this room as the rules are now? How do I make sure that I use the lessons I’m learning in other parts of my business to impact here?” That’s what I want you to be looking at, as you’re looking at these changes, as you’re looking at what’s working for you. “Great, how do I do more of this other places?” Diversify where you’re showing up by repurposing what’s already working, okay?

The other thing I want you to do is I want you to be really honest about how often you’re showing up in person.

This is something I’m really committing to this quarter, and I’m doubling down on in the fall again. I will, in Q3, plan my 2020. One of the first things that will go sort of on the board, figuratively, on the calendar, will be events. Where am I going? Where am I showing up? Where are my people going?

As I move through this year I’m making notes of conferences people are really, really excited about, or I’m watching them on Instagram and they’re all in on. And by all in I mean there’s lots of them in on it. When I see a conference or a event, or a retreat where four, or five, or six, or seven of the people who I’m connected with on Instagram are raving about I make a little note and go, “Okay, we may need to look at this for next year.”

That’s what I want you to be doing, is looking at where are you showing up in person? Now where I’m tweaking this for me right now, the thing I’m working on right now, is how do I unmortar that re-tweak, month to month? Because in the three years I’ve lived here in Southern California I’ve yet to find my sort of spot that I really enjoy going to on a regular basis, to connect and network. And so I’m looking for that.

And truth be told, if I don’t find it soon I may create it, I may create that space. And that’s what I did in Phoenix, I found a couple of spots that I liked but nothing that allowed me to have the kind of conversations I wanted to have. And so I created a coffee date that I hosted once per month. I booked a room in this really cool coffee shop in Phoenix, and I had ten women come and we essentially peer masterminded, in this room. We really dug into what was going on, there was always some new people, and guess what? That generated a lot of business for me. It also allowed me to find really great referral sources, and it allowed me to find podcasts to be in, it allowed me to find guests for my show, it fueled a lot of parts of my business. And so I may do that same thing now that I’m living here in Southern California.

But that’s a critical part of my digital marketing.

Seriously. Because those relationships have fueled follower growth, podcast listens, sales, email opt-ins, all of the things for me, because I spent the time extending those relationships and cementing those relationships. Extending them on social, and cementing them in person. And so look at where you can fill your calendar, not fill your calendar, add to your calendar, some of those pieces.

Because too many times we, and I’m guilty of this in seasons of my business for sure, I’ve definitely been this way since I got back from Mexico. In February I went to New York, in April I went to Mexico. And here we are the beginning of May, and I’m like, I don’t know, the next thing I have is October. I’m going to Atlanta in October, and I think I’m going somewhere in December, don’t actually know where yet. But that’s it, that’s all I know. And I’m going, huh, so I have a few months. Okay, well I’ll just go in for a little bit, and that’s what I’ve done for the last month, as soon as I got back from Mexico.

But now I’m going wait, I need to fuel this part of my business, I need to support this part of my business. So I’m looking local. So I want you to look at where are you seeing that maybe you’ve gone into hibernation, and if you need to build those times into your business? This is something I love, Tara Newman over the Bold Leadership Revolution talks about, in fact she did a podcast episode on it at the beginning of this year, I’ll link to it in the show notes, it’s worth listening to, but it’s kind of how she does January differently. She slows done in January, she sort of goes in in January. She doesn’t spend a ton of time networking, so that she can go into February, March, April, and the spring doing a lot more of that, to fuel the business she’s going to sell towards the end of the year.

And she talks about it in the episode, and it’s true, build those in. Look for that. For me that is the end of the year, November, December, I tend to check out, because I just do. It’s my recharge time. In the summer I check out a little bit from the networking stuff, because the kid’s home more, and we’re doing cool fun stuff, and maybe I try to vacation or travel or whatever, but for me it always comes back to needing to get out and make those connections, because it’s such a critical part of my structure. Okay?

So figure out those two things, okay? Look at how you can diversify what you’re doing that’s already working, and look at where you can add that in-person energy, add that belly-to-belly, sharing oxygen kind of vibe. Again, it can look like lots of things, one of my favorite ways to do this is meeting up with people who I know online in a really informal way. It doesn’t have to be a conference, I’m lucky to live in a place where people travel to all the time, like I said, so when people come to town I meet up with them. There’s also a ton of people I know who live here, and so I’m making more of an effort to meet up them, because they’re literally right here. Have coffee, start with that.But add some people back to your life, alright?

Okay, so that is today’s episode.

If you have any questions, let me know. I did want to let you know a couple of housekeeping things before I close out the show. We have a couple of spots left, or available I should say, for BAM, they just opened up. So that’s the Backstage Amplifier Mastermind, that’s Hit the Mic Backstage, plus one-on-one time with me. That’s really cool, we’ve got two spots open. We’ve got Hit the Mic Backstage, it’s currently closed for new members but we’ll be opening the doors back up in June, June 1st, stay tuned for more on that.

Also happening in June, and what I really wanted to point out, because I want to make sure you know about, is our next Hit the Mic Backstage Live. It’s going to be virtual for June, but I highly, highly, highly recommend you grab your spot, because as always we have a limited amount of seats in the room, and I would love to see you take up one of them. So, join us for that. If you have any questions for me about anything we talked about today, or anything at all, send me a message on Instagram, let me know, come say hi.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on today’s episode, I really, really enjoyed your feedback from the Myspace episode, I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to some more fun episodes like that, in fact we have a really cool episode coming up in the next couple of weeks that I have recorded but not yet shared, that kind of walks through why I had pink hair, and why I don’t have pink hair anymore, and really sort of my journey as a personal brand is really the story. And then a really cool interview with India Jackson a couple of weeks after that about personal brands. So lots of cool stuff coming, thank you for staying here, thank you for listening. I’d love to hear from you.

All that to say, I’ll see you next week.

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