That basically sums up social media for people who don’t live, eat and breathe it. I’ve had this on my mind for a while because some people seem to think social media is always positive, rewarding and helpful. Don’t get me wrong — it is — but in reality, it takes work, patience and discipline to be successful at it.
Succinctly, not everyone will agree with what you say, do or share. And that’s okay. We need to be okay with dissent, disagreement and rational arguments. Sometimes, I see some people get bent out of shape because someone disagreed with them. Conversely, I see people get high off of a complimentary form of feedback.
The reality is, not everything will be glamorous, sexy or positive about social media.
If you’re getting into social media, realize that you will face these challenges along the way:
- ROI/Value – You may hit the question of ROI, investment of time into results and even if you’re making a different. I’ll be honest, I think about this more often lately than I have in the past. It’s a simple question: “Am I making a difference?” If it’s not yes, think about how you can make a difference and do it. The business justification should be centered around lower CPA, customer service, customer loyalty and brand awareness. I caution anyone who commits to numbers, sales or anything that could be ‘gamed’ in anyway.
- Unwanted Reactions – Did people not see the vision how you saw it? Sometimes your audience doesn’t see things how you see them. You really have two choices from here – persevere and keep it up or acquiesce and adapt your audience’s interests. I recommend persevering and growing some thick skin in this regard.
- Deviation from Strategy – Hah, this is one of the greatest sins in business and social media. I sincerely mean it. Social media is often most successful when it’s random acts of awesome. Don’t beat yourself up if you deviated from your strategy; look at the results and make changes. This process can be a bit demotivating; remember, social media strategy requires flexibility.
- Haters, Trolls & Psychos – It can be challenging to accept that a piece of content attracts the worst out of people. There wouldn’t be good without bad and at least you know you struck a chord with your audience even if it’s a bad one.
- (Lack of) Momentum – When you venture down a great idea or a plan, you usually get started with a lot of momentum. In social media, you soon realize that momentum slows significantly after about a month. The solution here is to have a grand goal/vision or purpose to always be working toward.
- Spam – Yeah, I know it sucks there is a lot of spam out there. When monitoring social media or even doing research, you’ll encounter seemingly limitless gobs of spam. Realize these are frauds trying to game the system and they’re not actually winning. Consider that once you produce a killer piece of content, you may in fact rise above all the noise and become relevant to a bunch of people.
Those are the top obstacles that I see in social media. It’s reality that everyone in social media faces. I recommend being open to new ideas, maintaining optimism and don’t be afraid to pave your own path in social media. There is no blueprint to success. It is what you make of it and do with it.
Image credit: vinzcha