Don’t be so lazy! Take the time for unique social media updates.

With so many helpful apps out there, it's difficult to resist the temptation to go for the easy, automated route to social media posts. R E S I S T – you'll be glad you did.  Yes, there are some times that you need to automate updates to stay on top of social media demands, but do not forget the purpose – distribution of FITTING news and NETWORKING – not just shoving your stuff to any place that will accept it or you.

We've all experienced the abuse of LinkedIn groups, Google+ circles, Twitter feeds that clog up your news.  What has led to the vomiting of  routine posts, weak tips, horn tooting and the like?  Pressure.  There is so much pressure to be present, everywhere, all the time – to be seen, heard and passed along.  At some point we have to get back to a time PRIOR to the Internet and social media. Let's go back in time – to a slower pace where when we wanted to generate buzz about our own companies, we wrote a press release, included a photo or two, and selected our target group of editors to send relative information about our company. We were not sending our latest software release for tracking ROI to Better Homes & Gardens.  We carefully spent the time to hone the list to ensure interest in our news.

When we wrote an article about something informative, we sent out query letters to see it if would fit in an editorial calendar.

When we launched a product, we shot commercials and created ads that would generate interest and would post those commercials and ads on channels where our audience hung out.

LISTEN:  EVERYONE is not your target audience!  Who is your ideal customer?  Where do they hang out?  What events, pubs, shows, and blogs are they interested in?  Posting to all of your groups on LinkedIn about your new company's recent software updates most likely won't help you. Post enough items that are of no interest or always self-serving and you'll get blocked and deleted from groups and lose fans and followers who tire of your voice and your brand.

If all yours posts on Facebook are about your business, business success, how great you are at your business – people will unfriend you unless all of your friends are the same way. And in that case you are all probably not reading each other's posts because you are too busy pushing out your own self-serving announcements.

Social Media – S O C I A L Media – is about community, relationships, NETWORKING – true networking where you aren't just gathering contact nuts into a tree stump of lists.   It's easy to have one post do the job of many individual posts, but you miss the point and the opportunity.  Feel free to copy/paste, but tailor the post for the venue. Tie it to something that does NOT serve you once in a while.  Find others talking about the same topic and ENGAGE them through replies, comments and retweets. You will be surprised at how quickly your build a reputation as a networker rather than someone who simply spews "me" all over the web.

Slow down your posts if you are too bogged down to actually engage the people you follow.  Quality is much better than quantity.   On the flip side, set a reminder for yourself to spend 15 minutes per venue per week minimum.  Daily would be better. Think of it as hands-on-marketing – you are allowing others to get to know YOU and your BRAND through your THOUGHTFUL posts. Post at similar times each day or week.  Think about Cheers or your local tavern – the regulars are there the same days, the same times.  You look forward to seeing them and catching up.  You are there when they are so you don't miss each other.  Try it!  Put the social back into Social Media and you’re sure to grow your following.