Hey friend, I’ve got a question for you. How many times have you checked your views on your latest reel in the past 30 minutes? What about your likes on your latest post? Follower count? Please know, you’re not alone. You’re in great company of those addicted to checking and re-checking social media analytics and statistics. I get it – it’s addictive – but look, there’s a bit more to this than numbers (especailly those that are vanity metrics and don’t align with your overarching business goals…but I digress.)
You can hope for – and chase – endless growth like some Fortune 500 CEO, but here’s the thing: We can’t predict the future. If you find someone with that crystal ball, tell them I sent ya! Sure, there are some things we can influence in the short-term, but when it comes to social media, the long-term landscape is a big ol’ question mark. Why’s that? Because we don’t own any of the social media platforms we use. Their owners and execs make decisions about algorithms, growth and operations according to their own bottom lines, not ours. Let that sink in for a moment.
All that effort we’ve put into befriending the algorithms, maximizing views and boosting engagement? That could all go away tomorrow if the Zuck decides that the next big thing is holographic baseball cards. YouTube could pivot away from video. Instagram could become nothing but pay-to-play. LinkedIn could become subscriber only. Maybe rotary phones will make a comeback! Who knows! It’s wild out there, kids! Again: Not saying ANY of this is going to happen or that I heard it through some secret social media manager portal – so don’t go into a panic spiral, cool?
No One Knows Anything, And That’s OK.
What I’m getting at is that I understand the frustration about trying to hit those higher and higher follower and engagement numbers. I get how hard it is to try to succeed in a space whose inner workings are hidden behind a curtain. But change is part of it, friend. You can be a total pro at this one minute, only to have the algorithms shift under your feet the next. Social media is never under your control, so in the immortal words of Disney’s Elsa: Let it gooooooooo.
Go forth with curiosity, make great content, and be prepared to test, shift and reframe your whole concept about what your social media presence looks like. Be cool with it if the social media agency you’re working with suddenly pivots to video or does a strategy reversal – sometimes changes roll out faster than a cheese wheel down a hill, and adaptation is part of the game.
That’s why at Oh Snap! Social, we don our freshly-pressed white lab coats and abide by the motto always be curious, because in our world – this is mission: critical!
Yes, sometimes watching a killer piece of content tank makes you want to chuck your phone out the window (if that’s you, make sure to invest in a protective case, I know a guy). But if your response to social media involves more angsting than celebrating, it’s time for a mindset shift.
Introducing the Zen Precept of Live, Like, Love.
Not getting the reach you want? Just think, a few years ago, none of these opportunities existed. People had to find you in the phone book or literally walk into your business (like, an actual physical brick-and-mortar business that you had to pay to rent). Word of mouth was pretty much limited to the people in your neighborhood. These days? You can reach people from all over the world – for free (and with no roaming charges!) Sure, it takes time to shoot a video and write a caption, but compared with literally going door to door or putting up one of those creepy inflatable tube guys car dealerships love so much…well, it ain’t so bad.
So instead of grumbling about the followers or views or clicks that you’re not getting, start celebrating the ones that you are getting. Every one of those pocket friends is a fan you wouldn’t have had back in the olden days of dial-up or rotary phones or telegrams. And you earned them just by tapping and scrolling! Like, sure, it’s work, and sure, you got here by being smart and strategic, but in the scheme of all of the other business stuff you’ve got going on, social media is definitely about as fun, human and SOCIAL as it gets.
But think about it from this angle – and I cover this in the below Reel that still rings true today —1,000 views, 100 views, 50 views, sure doesn’t seem like a lot but if 50 people knocked on my office door in less than an hour I would FREAK OUT!
So enjoy it, friends! Get creative! Make bad jokes! Be vulnerable! Film some process stuff! Give a new format a try! Share your truth! If you don’t get the traction you want, you’ve spent a few minutes and maybe a few tax-deductible bucks. It’s low stakes. It’s cheap. It’s ripe for exploration and experimentation. Do it your way, not some guru’s way – and definitely not your competitor’s way.
Sure, you can get mad at the algorithms for changing like the fickleness of your dad when he’s in charge of the car radio. Or you can get zen about it, and do your thing, do it the way you want (with intention and strategy, of course!), and appreciate the wins when they happen no matter how small or big they are to you. You can’t control the algorithms, but you can control your reaction to ‘em. Don’t let some tech bro whose sole job is to create content for the ‘gram yuck your yum as you continue to build the sustainable business of your dreams! Keep putting yourself out there – and learn to appreciate every new follower and like that comes your way. You’ve got this!
If you’ve been consistent on social media and want to gain clarity around your numbers and measure the metrics that matter to your overall business goals – let’s get a pulse check in the books for you so you can kick up your social media for the upcoming month with focused intention!