When you're a creative, busy... creating, it's super hard to keep all the social media plates spinning. There aren't endless hours in the day, and as our visibility online grows, as we connect with new readers, investors, patrons, et al, we find ourselves joining even more social media platforms and online communities in order to create even more visibility and success.
It can be exhausting, and it can also be damaging if you let some of those platforms drift creating a footprint of earlier branding that may not fully reflect where you are now at.
In oder to keep a fresh, cohesive brand across the internet and social media world, I have created a process of consciously 'quick checking'. It can be really easy to be sucked into a sparkly new social media platform, plough all your current work, concepts, branding and time into it - but the danger is that the others lag behind and the connections you have worked so hard to build, start to grow stale.
Here is a quick 5 point check which can be done in just one or two hours of your time a month.
Before you begin, write a list of all the social-media platforms, forums and other places you have at some point made a profile for. (You'll be amazed, especially as like me, you've probably jumped on every up and coming subject related platform over the years. You may need to google yourself.)
1: YOU. Make sure all your profile pictures are a) relevant to the audience for that particular social platform, b) make it one of your more recent photos, and c) good quality, which means properly lit, properly cropped, and appropriate context. (It's really good practice to try and get photos of you taken on a regular basis and build up a folder on your desktop so you can just grab one - a good selfie has its place, too so don't be afraid to get in front of the camera)
2: BANNERS. Don't underestimate the power of banners to be an effective advertising space. Does your banner demonstrate fully a) What you do? b) What's fresh and new in your world? c) Have either an explicit or implicit call to action depending on the platform.
3: POST. Write a single post (it can be a copy & paste on each of the platforms if time is really squeezed) but it should include where you've been, what you've been doing, what your currently excited about and will show you've not been inactive, just really creatively busy. It will also show you're still willing to engage, and your not abandoning your fan / reader / patron base. If people stumble across your page, it also shows that you aren't missing in the ether and no longer relevant.
4: ENGAGE. Spend 5 minutes engaging with 10 other people on that platform. Leave a comment on their post, ask a question, share a post - demonstrate that as well as swinging by to broadcast, you're willing to engage and connect. It gives the impression that you are a lot more active than you actually are.
5: DELETE. Ask yourself what each particular profile is doing for you. If it's not working, if you know in your heart that you don't have the time or inclination to invest in it, then delete it. It's better to have 3 or 4 really engaging, exciting, fresh and live platforms where people know where to find you than having a load of dead or dying fish in the water. Poorly managed social media platforms can do more damage than not having one in the first place.
If you do each of these 5 small tasks once a month - maybe allocated a specific day (such as the first or last of the month to make it memorable) then you'll soon find that your social media platforms are all up to date, relevant and creating more engagement. Good luck, and remember the trick with social media is little and often.