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5 Hacks To Kill It With Social Media Productivity Without Wasting All Your Time

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  • May 18, 2015

Social media plays a big role in our lives. It creates a safe place to bond with our tribe and create meaningful relationships. If we are smart about it, these relationships grow into massive opportunities.

Social Media Productivity

Avoiding social media would be the same as living under a rock. If you’re an entrepreneur, freelancer, or a business owner you know that there is no choice but to participate.

Keeping up with social media productivity is costly, time-wise.

We find ourselves cornered, trying to decide what is more important: To kill time on social media, or actually work on our business? We all have only 24 hours a day, so we need to choose wisely.

Here are the top 5 tips that will help you succeed on social media, without wasting all your time:

1. Choose your platforms

Instead of trying to keep up with 6 different platforms, choose the 2 that will make an actual difference for your business. The biggest mistake we make is trying to cover all bases, reaching out to different types of audiences all at once.

social media productivity loss

Priority is key here – define who are the people you want to connect with. Potential clients? Future fans? Or maybe market leaders?

Whoever they are, they have a preference when it comes to social media. Much like yourself, they don’t have time to be everywhere all at once. The sooner you find out where they are, the easier it’ll be to zero in on the right platforms and start seeing results.

2. Create valuable content

Congrats!

You now know who you’re targeting and the platform you’ll be using. The next thing on your list is to decide what type of content you’ll be sharing.

social media marketing productivity

Content creation is the hardest part in social media success. We’re so accustomed to using social media as our personal billboard, that we forget to provide value to our audience.

Imagine what your feed would look like, if people on it provided real value. No more notifying you of every blog post they published and every podcast episode they released. Instead, what if they shared content that actually solved your problems? Served your needs? Fulfilled your goals? What if you were their main focus?

Sounds like fiction, right?

Truth is, this is what great social media is all about: providing value time after time after time.

You want to build yourself as the person who always has something helpful to share. Your profile needs to be worthy of following. Your content needs to hit the sweet spot for that to happen.

Your sweet spot is found between what your audience needs, what you stand for, and what the platform you’re using allows.

social media productivity tips

Simply put, you need to fulfill a need your audience has, by delivering content from your area of expertise, in a format natural to the platform you’re using.

Finding the natural format for each platform is a bit out of the scope for this post. If you’re interested in learning more about it, I strongly recommend reading Gary Vaynerchu’s “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World”.

3. Set time for content creation

Content creation is the biggest bane of all. Much like dirty dishes, no matter how often you do it, it keeps piling up. If you’re not yet ready to buy a dishwasher (aka outsource parts of your content creation), the best thing you can do is streamline the process.

social media and productivity

Schedule appointments with yourself to create content. Be it once a week, twice a month or even daily – an appointment on your calendar makes it harder to procrastinate.

Having a pre-set schedule for content creation will allow you to have an editorial calendar, which will bring your consistency to a whole new level. After all, when it comes to social media consistency is the magic word.

Make sure to schedule these sessions on the same days and time every week. This will create a routine and allow you to shorten the time it takes your brain to get into full-on working mode.

4. Task batching

Aside from content creation, if you truly want to kill it on social media, you need to be doing a few more things: Content curation, scheduling posts, engaging with audience to name a few.

Batching tasks together means taking all your content creation and doing it in one sitting, preferably a week or two ahead. Then, repeat it for content curation. Then scheduling, and so on for each type of task you have in your social-media to do list.

personal productivity tips

Batching tasks together for each type of task helps you stay on top of your game and ahead of schedule, not to mention saves heaps of time. By batching tasks you allow yourself to work on similar tasks without losing focus. This minimizes the effort and time you waste on switching gears between different types of tasks.

5. Sprinkle your day with social media

You found your audience. You did the hard work of creating valuable content for them and scheduled it to make sure you’re visible in their feed.

Now it’s time to reap the fruits of your labor and build those meaningful relationships you’ve been after all along.

Let’s talk a bit about engagement.

Engagement is a bottomless pit, and it will suck all your time, if you allow it to. Replying, re-tweeting, re-sharing, liking, following and so on until it’s way too late to get some real work done.

Sounds familiar?

Don’t worry – you can easily outsmart it.

social media time management

Instead of setting aside time for engagement, use fragments of time that are currently wasted:

  • Reply to tweets while listening to a podcast.

  • Check your Instagram feed while walking the dog.

  • Reply to direct messages while doing the dishes.

You get the gist.

The golden rule is to use every minute you have for engagement, without spending a single second on engagement alone.

Once you’re done walking the dog, listening to the podcast episode or doing the dishes your engagement time is up. By implementing this simple hack you ensure that you don’t get sucked into this rabbit hole.

A few minutes here and there accumulates to a substantial amount during the course of a week. Before you know it – you’re all caught up with your tribe without ever spending time directly on it.

One more BONUS advice, while we’re on the subject of engagement – turn off all the notifications you have on your smartphone and tablet.

These notifications are constantly disrupting your train of thought and yank you out of your day. No doubt it is hurting your ability to concentrate on anything but social media.

If you’ve implemented the tips provided in this post, you already have enough time on your schedule to take care of all your social-media needs. You already are spending every second you can on engagement. Why do you need to know when someone liked your photo? Or commented on your status? You’ll get around to it when the time is right for you.

Don’t allow social media to dictate your day. Dictate your social media presence according to your schedule.

How about you? What’s one tip or tool you’ve been using to up your social media productivity game and save time?

Photo credit: © Rawpixel, © elaborah, © goir, © Marek, © picsfive, © patpitchaya, © Kiddaikiddee, © capacitorphoto – fotolia.com

Author Julie Sheranosher

Julie Sheranosher is a time management expert and a success coach. She blogs over at ImJulie.com, a blog & podcast about achieving 100% of your goals through time hacking and productivity. Grab her free email course on daily planning here.

More posts by Julie Sheranosher
  • Great tips. Interesting idea to multitasking & engage. Agree the engaging aspect can be a time sucker. I have been checking & engaging lately in evening while watching tv, can get a lot done during commercials.

    • Oh, I love it Roslyn!
      TV time + engagement = HUGE WIN!
      Thank you for sharing:)

  • Great tips. Interesting idea to multitasking & engage. Agree the engaging aspect can be a time sucker. I have been checking & engaging lately in evening while watching tv, can get a lot done during commercials.

    • Oh, I love it Roslyn!
      TV time + engagement = HUGE WIN!
      Thank you for sharing:)

  • Beth – http://EncoreWomen.com

    I really like this article because the suggestions are all very practical and clear. Scheduling your social media chores is really important and I like the idea of engaging while doing something else like walking the dog.

    • Thank you for reading, Beth! Walking the dog seems to be a very productive time for me 😉

  • Beth – http://EncoreWomen.com

    I really like this article because the suggestions are all very practical and clear. Scheduling your social media chores is really important and I like the idea of engaging while doing something else like walking the dog.

    • Thank you for reading, Beth! Walking the dog seems to be a very productive time for me 😉

  • Katarina Andersson

    Thanks these are great points to follow, and I try to follow them, even if sometimes my time seems to not be enough. :-)

    • Great job, Katarina!
      Time is always enough, it’s just that we want too much 😉

  • Katarina Andersson

    Thanks these are great points to follow, and I try to follow them, even if sometimes my time seems to not be enough. :-)

    • Great job, Katarina!
      Time is always enough, it’s just that we want too much 😉

  • Bobbi Raffin

    Such great pointers! And … a GREAT share.

    • Glad it resonated with you, Bobbi! Thank you for reading:)

  • Bobbi Raffin

    Such great pointers! And … a GREAT share.

    • Glad it resonated with you, Bobbi! Thank you for reading:)

  • This is so helpful – thank you!

    • Thank you for reading, Christine! Glad you like it:)

  • This is so helpful – thank you!

    • Thank you for reading, Christine! Glad you like it:)

  • I completely agree with your points. The two that made the most impact for me were choosing a few platforms and content curation. Once I figured out that I needed to focus on one or two platforms to start, this made things so much easier and better. I love Buffer’s “25 Suggestions” that are available for scheduling each time I’m planning my posts. Buffer has made content curation much easier. Great article!

    • Thanks Meghan. I like that part of Buffer also. Do you use it often?

      • Definitely! I use Buffer every day to schedule my tweets. It’s a great tool–especially for someone who doesn’t have a lot of personal blog posts to tweet. It’s perfect for content curation. Best of all, Buffer’s mobile app is easy-to-use. I do most of my social media management from my tablet.

  • I completely agree with your points. The two that made the most impact for me were choosing a few platforms and content curation. Once I figured out that I needed to focus on one or two platforms to start, this made things so much easier and better. I love Buffer’s “25 Suggestions” that are available for scheduling each time I’m planning my posts. Buffer has made content curation much easier. Great article!

    • Thanks Meghan. I like that part of Buffer also. Do you use it often?

      • Definitely! I use Buffer every day to schedule my tweets. It’s a great tool–especially for someone who doesn’t have a lot of personal blog posts to tweet. It’s perfect for content curation. Best of all, Buffer’s mobile app is easy-to-use. I do most of my social media management from my tablet.

  • Beverley Golden

    Great ideas in this post, Michael! For me, all of life is really about building relationships and the disadvantage of doing it online is that you don’t get to talk and interact with others person to person. Choosing two key platforms and streamlining what and how long you are on social media makes a lot of sense to me. I feel like I spend way too many hours engaging in “silent” conversations and creating relationships. Love using Hootsuite to schedule posts as you suggest and lately I have also been planning in the time to create the posts too! Thanks for the great article!

    • Thanks Beverley. I love when I get to meet people in real life belly to belly after having had a relationship online via Twitter or even a Facebook group. Always great to truly physically connect and strengthen that bond. Thanks for stopping by Beverley :)

  • Beverley Golden

    Great ideas in this post, Michael! For me, all of life is really about building relationships and the disadvantage of doing it online is that you don’t get to talk and interact with others person to person. Choosing two key platforms and streamlining what and how long you are on social media makes a lot of sense to me. I feel like I spend way too many hours engaging in “silent” conversations and creating relationships. Love using Hootsuite to schedule posts as you suggest and lately I have also been planning in the time to create the posts too! Thanks for the great article!

    • Thanks Beverley. I love when I get to meet people in real life belly to belly after having had a relationship online via Twitter or even a Facebook group. Always great to truly physically connect and strengthen that bond. Thanks for stopping by Beverley :)

  • Sharon MacLean

    Yes!! Choose the 2 platforms that will make a difference! Love, love this one, Michael.

    • Awww thanks Sharon. we’re happy to have had Julie write for us this month :)

    • Thank you, Sharon!:)

  • Sharon MacLean

    Yes!! Choose the 2 platforms that will make a difference! Love, love this one, Michael.

    • Awww thanks Sharon. we’re happy to have had Julie write for us this month :)

    • Thank you, Sharon!:)

  • Carol Rundle

    I think it’s so important to schedule your day, not just for social media, but for returning calls, checking email, etc. It’s so easy to let these things control us, but we must control them.

    • Schedule, Schedule, Schedule :) I agree not just SM but all parts of our business. Helps the day be MUCH more productive for sure.

    • You’re spot on, Carol.
      In the army, we had a saying: “If it’s not on the schedule it doesn’t exist” – it works 😉
      Thank you for reading and commenting:)

  • Carol Rundle

    I think it’s so important to schedule your day, not just for social media, but for returning calls, checking email, etc. It’s so easy to let these things control us, but we must control them.

    • Schedule, Schedule, Schedule :) I agree not just SM but all parts of our business. Helps the day be MUCH more productive for sure.

    • You’re spot on, Carol.
      In the army, we had a saying: “If it’s not on the schedule it doesn’t exist” – it works 😉
      Thank you for reading and commenting:)

  • Kristy Klenk

    So many good points! I currently focus my efforts on Pinterest. I enjoy taking the time to really understand how it can help my business and make connections that are meaningful. I find if I’m stretched between too many platforms, I don’t do any of them well.

    • Big fan of Pinterest also. Definitely sends us a ton of regular traffic to our site.

    • Great job, Kristy!
      Taking the time to find the right platform and use it the right way – this is the kind of investment that will double itself rather soon.
      Thanks for reading and commenting :)

  • Kristy Klenk

    So many good points! I currently focus my efforts on Pinterest. I enjoy taking the time to really understand how it can help my business and make connections that are meaningful. I find if I’m stretched between too many platforms, I don’t do any of them well.

    • Big fan of Pinterest also. Definitely sends us a ton of regular traffic to our site.

    • Great job, Kristy!
      Taking the time to find the right platform and use it the right way – this is the kind of investment that will double itself rather soon.
      Thanks for reading and commenting :)

  • The one takeaway I’m going to implement is to turn off notifications – they definitely do distract & are usually nothing directly related to my ‘engagement’.

    • I liked that tip also Liz. Definitely helps from picking up my phone every few minutes when it buzzes :) Thanks for stopping by :)

  • The one takeaway I’m going to implement is to turn off notifications – they definitely do distract & are usually nothing directly related to my ‘engagement’.

    • I liked that tip also Liz. Definitely helps from picking up my phone every few minutes when it buzzes :) Thanks for stopping by :)

  • Great article! I love your tip around scheduling time for content creation and task batching – so important. I know business owners who spend 3 hours a day with social media, just because they are missing the productivity piece…

    • Productivity is definitely an important part that can’t be overlooked or you’re married like you said to it all day. Thanks for stopping by Erika :)

    • Completely agree!
      3 hours a day – that’s CRAZY! you need to be getting some AH-mazing results to justify this amount of time and effort, right?

  • Great article! I love your tip around scheduling time for content creation and task batching – so important. I know business owners who spend 3 hours a day with social media, just because they are missing the productivity piece…

    • Productivity is definitely an important part that can’t be overlooked or you’re married like you said to it all day. Thanks for stopping by Erika :)

    • Completely agree!
      3 hours a day – that’s CRAZY! you need to be getting some AH-mazing results to justify this amount of time and effort, right?

  • Stacey McCoy

    I love this! I actually dropped two SM avenues this month just to have a breather. Great tips

    • Dropped 2 WOW. Just read about someone who shuts down “Social” on Friday after work and then won’t come on again till Monday. Doesn’t feel so “social” then to me. Thanks for stopping by Stacey :)

    • Thanks for reading, Stacey!
      I think it’s crucial to stick only with what’s relevant to you, otherwise – it’s just a waste of time, right?

  • Stacey McCoy

    I love this! I actually dropped two SM avenues this month just to have a breather. Great tips

    • Dropped 2 WOW. Just read about someone who shuts down “Social” on Friday after work and then won’t come on again till Monday. Doesn’t feel so “social” then to me. Thanks for stopping by Stacey :)

    • Thanks for reading, Stacey!
      I think it’s crucial to stick only with what’s relevant to you, otherwise – it’s just a waste of time, right?

  • Shiv Mishra

    Very useful article. Thanks for sharing

    • Glad you find it useful!
      Thank you for reading:)

  • Shiv Mishra

    Very useful article. Thanks for sharing

    • Glad you find it useful!
      Thank you for reading:)

  • I think finding the balance is the hardest part – and doing it consistently. I can do wonderfully at all or none or a few at a time … but then I have *those* days where nothing seems to get done! 😀

    • Yes I’m sure many have those days :)

    • We all have those days!:)
      It’s important to let go of them and start fresh tomorrow… after all – time, unlike money, is something we get daily no matter what we do 😉

  • I think finding the balance is the hardest part – and doing it consistently. I can do wonderfully at all or none or a few at a time … but then I have *those* days where nothing seems to get done! 😀

    • Yes I’m sure many have those days :)

    • We all have those days!:)
      It’s important to let go of them and start fresh tomorrow… after all – time, unlike money, is something we get daily no matter what we do 😉

  • Jackie Harder

    I think these are all great ideas and I’m delighted to say I am doing them all. Except the mutli-tasking piece. I think it’s a disservice to engage with your peeps while you are doing something else. And it shows, too. I can always tell when someone’s full attention is not on the message at hand.

    • Thanks for stopping by Jackie. I think as long as you’re truly engaging, caring and not just writing non-thoughtful responses it’s fine. If you’re just going through the motion, totally agree with you.

  • Jackie Harder

    I think these are all great ideas and I’m delighted to say I am doing them all. Except the mutli-tasking piece. I think it’s a disservice to engage with your peeps while you are doing something else. And it shows, too. I can always tell when someone’s full attention is not on the message at hand.

    • Thanks for stopping by Jackie. I think as long as you’re truly engaging, caring and not just writing non-thoughtful responses it’s fine. If you’re just going through the motion, totally agree with you.

  • Beth Kovinsky Blacker

    I definitely had to find the platforms that worked best for me and not stress about the rest. It’s like anything else in life…you simply can’t spread yourself too thin or something will suffer. In my case, it was my mind :)

  • Beth Kovinsky Blacker

    I definitely had to find the platforms that worked best for me and not stress about the rest. It’s like anything else in life…you simply can’t spread yourself too thin or something will suffer. In my case, it was my mind :)

  • Kristen Wilson

    Excellent tips… I learned to turn off the notification early on… because I want to just “do that real quick” and would easily get distracted. Picking a social or two is also key.. can’t be excellent on everything and just getting by on all of them isn’t ideal!

  • Kristen Wilson

    Excellent tips… I learned to turn off the notification early on… because I want to just “do that real quick” and would easily get distracted. Picking a social or two is also key.. can’t be excellent on everything and just getting by on all of them isn’t ideal!

  • Oh, goodness. No. Walk your dog without any devices whatsoever. Down time, waiting for kids from school, waiting on an appointment, watching tv. Engagement in the real world is all that really matters, focus on that, the natural flow of BALANCED engagement on social media will come. Be in the moment.

  • Oh, goodness. No. Walk your dog without any devices whatsoever. Down time, waiting for kids from school, waiting on an appointment, watching tv. Engagement in the real world is all that really matters, focus on that, the natural flow of BALANCED engagement on social media will come. Be in the moment.

  • Great article, I appreciate your helpful tips! Streamlining our content creation has always been a challenge! I just booked my content creation appointments for Sept. Thanks again ~ Preston

    • Great to hear Preston. Congrats and thanks for stopping by.

  • Great article, I appreciate your helpful tips! Streamlining our content creation has always been a challenge! I just booked my content creation appointments for Sept. Thanks again ~ Preston

    • Great to hear Preston. Congrats and thanks for stopping by.

  • This!! Every tip is spot on. I need to work on not falling down the engagement hole. I just love to chat online a bit too much!! Ha! Back to writing…

    • Yes we can all get trapped online and see hours gone if we don’t set limits (agree). Thanks for visiting Social Quant. Have an amazing Holiday ~ Mike

      • Happy Holidays to you too! Bring on the egg nog! :)

  • Marlene Aguirre

    Wonderful article. My tip would be to have your notepad around. And to record on your smart phone any new ideas that pop up. Once in editorial time is set you build on that content. :) Thank you for the infograph, sharing my experiences have had a great effect on building value to my community. 👌 Thank you team for all you do. 💪

    • Thanks for visiting Social Quant Marlene and checking this post out. Truly grateful :)

      • Marlene Aguirre

        Absolutely. I will definitely help and share in any way possible. 🙏

  • Nyavula

    Amazing. Thank you for sharing.

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