Fixing The Social Media Plateau

Pinterest featue in Metro - 27th February 2012

Pinterest featue in Metro - 27th February 2012 (Photo credit: Great British Chefs)

There’s a social cultural shift on the ‘sphere and the ‘webz; have you felt it? More’s the question…are you experiencing a social media sea change plateau yourself?

Many in my community have been on this social engagement and blogging journey for an average of 18 months. For me, it’s almost four years.

When you look at that timeframe doing almost the same thing day in and day out, it’s time to grow or die.

The signs below may be an indication it’s time to step up your game, take it to the next level, and grow or remain complacent. See if these strike a chord and whether you might add a few of your own:

10 Indications You’ve Hit a Social Media Plateau

1. Learning new things becomes more rare; another 20 ways to use Pinterest blog post isn’t providing new insight over what you know now.

2. Your favorite bloggers seem to be echoing the chamber more frequently, and there’s a reason you’re spotting that — you’re ready to grow because you know.

3. Posting wit and banter on the channels is more of a chore and you find yourself sharing posts without reading to keep your Klout score up.

4. Facebook’s continued alterations and altercations have you yawning as you realize other channels may be a better fit.

5. You read some of the posts and shake your head at the nonsense.

6. When you find a new blogger with some awesome content and you write a comment saying so and get crickets in response.

7. When you see a favorite blogger MIA or changing it up so drastically you can’t follow whose writing you’re reading.

8. When whining becomes more the rant and a feeling of morose amplifies emotions in posts.

9. When the Triberr stream is populated with content that boils down to limited scope, repetition and topics you’ve seen already a dozen times.

10. When the road ahead is a question mark.

How To Fix The Social Media Plateau

Not saying you need to feel all of these or any, but when you begin to question your purpose and experience a few of those listed above, consider these possible solutions to fix The  Social Media Plateau:

1. Take a hiatus and refocus on your core business. You’ll buy back tons of time; yet, your social brand will suffer.

2. Reduce the time spent on the channels that don’t return much to you. That way, you’re not spread as thin.

3. Guest post on national blogs or other more high-traffic blogs (only after you engage and make a connection with the bloggers’ community, of course).

4. Tackle a whole new area, which can be any or all of the following — web design, analytics/big data, content marketing and lead gen, podcasting, webinars, passive income, affiliate marketing, speaking, e-books/books, and, and, and…

OMYGOSH…look at #4 — there’s my laundry list to push the envelope and avoid a social media plateau! What about you? Did any of that tickle the pink?

 

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49 comments
AdrienneSmith
AdrienneSmith

Oh good, I guess I'm not ready for the shift yet Jayme.

 

The only thing that I continue to come across these days is visiting blogs where I just can't read their content.  It's the same old thing told the same old way and I'm bored before I get through the first paragraph.  In the past I would have read it anyway and said my very nice comment but today.  Hell no, I'm outta there.

 

I know my time will come though for revamping or just taking a breather from it all.  I do hope thought that I'll continue to grow and in a very positive way.

 

Thanks for the share!

 

~Adrienne

Hajra
Hajra

I o love the list. I can understand, 20 ways to increase traffic posts don't interest me anymore.but yes, I am still having fun reading and learning what it is to be social and just write without editors showing you the red ink all the time... Except of course for Erin! And if we feel we have hit the plateau then take a break, because breaks do wonders!

Latest blog post: Inspiration, Laziness, Secrets

TroyClaus
TroyClaus

Eye opening to say the least.

 

I went through a shift a few months back, so I took the advice in #1 and took some well needed time away. I found when I came back I had a much clearer understanding of my online purpose.

 

And I too love #4, and will hold you accountable to finishing that book :) I can only imagine how thought provoking, game changing and actionable your content will be (no pressure) :)

 

Great work Jayme,

 

Troy

New England Multimedia
New England Multimedia

I'm all over this list, Jayme! Great post, and as always, thank-you for being real so the rest of us can breathe a sigh of relief that we're not alone. 

 

My problem is really time management. Scott swears by Outlook; he's used Outlook for years to manage his workload, tasks, communications, and goals.  What do you use for time management? Or do you just fly by the seat of your pants?

janemckaycomms
janemckaycomms

@soulati Food for thought as always, thank you.

 

Don't tell me you're finally doing all the GPing and ebook authoring you were talking about when you visited me last? Good on you!

 

When I blog I want to contribute something be it humour, information, beautiful images. Not just content for content's sake and that takes research and creative time I simply don't have. 

 

I haven't been in this blogging lark long but it has generated so much work that I'm attending to the paid work and neglecting the blog. A wonderful predicament I know but I'm frustrated at the lost momentum.

rdopping
rdopping

As one of those 18 month bloggers even I see some of these issues already. What does that tell you? I agree with Mark that it is challenging to keep content fresh and stay ahead of the arc. I have seen something else too. Sometimes reinventing is due to a lack of creative stamina. I have certainly felt that myself. I sometimes struggle when I feel like my message is not being heard and have to remind myself of my goals to ensure my focus remains clear. Do you think this may pay into some of the general malaise that may strike a long standing bloggers efforts? Maybe #4 is an excuse rather than benefit to the efforts of consistency, maintaining voice and focus on a niche. Blast away!

jennwhinnem
jennwhinnem

Lady, I hear you. More than I can say. I love that you inspired yourself while writing this!

Shelley Pringle
Shelley Pringle

Hi Jayme, You are so right. After spending the better part of my career in marketing communications, mostly PR, I changed things up drastically about a year ago when I started my blog and then eventually added inbound marketing to my service offerings. It was so motivating to start learning new things again. I'm trying to stretch more in 2013 with speaking engagements and hopefully a book (don't hold me to it, though).

barrettrossie
barrettrossie

Hi Jayme. Yep, #4 is pretty awesome. I'm always amazed at some of the more prolific bloggers who are on the cusp of everything new, it seems. I thing blogging can force you to become a serial learner, and sharer, and that's pretty valuable stuff. 

 

There's a lot to be said for blogging about topics where you have lots of experience and expertise on the one hand, and on new topics where you can apply your experience. 

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @AdrienneSmith I wonder what strikes people trying to write? They ought to know their blog is crappy? I mean when they sit there with Zero comments or shares, then I would kick it up into high gear and so something different. 

 

I'm not ready to depart these hills; but I am ready for change. Nothing like year end to push that envelope! 

 

Can't wait to see what you've got up your sleeve. Your content is already so rich. Have to say, I am reluctant to comment on your blog as I get about 100 emails with everyone's comments!!! Heh. That's a huge compliment, Girl!

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @Hajra  You're so correct! I should've added -- feel free to take a week off at the holiday and re-energize. When I come back, I'm raring to write and have missed it.  The creative mojo is tops after a needed hiatus, Hajra! Great having you over today!

Latest blog post: How Do You Listen?

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @TroyClaus No, really. Thanks for coming over. See what a hiatus does for you? You either come back with a vengeance or realize it's not for you. Although I may not post consistently when I'm off the grid, I'm still seeking out ways to create unique content. 

 

I decided that content authority is NOT the echo chamber for me. I'm gonna write what comes, and I think that's a sure sign of blogging maturity, too. Thanks, Troy!

Latest blog post: How Do You Listen?

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @New England Multimedia  Girl? You kiddin' me? I have NEVER EVER been a time management girl. There are 3 calendars, maybe 5, floating around this office and house. At 4 p.m. every day, bells and whistles go off in 3 places alerting me to tomorrow's meetings. That said, I delete them all.

 

I've heard Evernote is the bomb. I have it downloaded in 3 places; you got me if it is...I've tried and tried to be better to no avail. 

 

Seat of the pants time management -- that's my agency days' fault!!  Thanks, Michelle!

Latest blog post: How Do You Listen?

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @janemckaycomms  @soulati No kidding??? What's your secret? You've already monetized that newbie blog? I'm so impressed. Now, am I making the right assumption -- are you in the UK? Could that be the differential?

 

Yep, embarking finally on that ebook and other good stuff, too, Jane. Have to. 13 is my lucky number and have to make it the best one yet!

 

Great having you over!

 

Have to agree, the stories I really want to write on (in-depth reporting) require time I can't give; so suffice with content that is fresh and hopefully not too echo'y.

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @rdopping You're right -- creative stamina endurance is where most fall away. Maybe I need to write on this again as a reminder to myself, too. 

 

As for #4? No excuse at all? It's a genuine list of areas to learn that I and others may be deficient in. I read someone's blog today and the comment was akin to, "No, I'm not a social media guru because I'm not done learning." 

 

Indeed!

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @markwschaefer Good Morning, Dear Friend!!! Thanks so  much for coming over! And, I absolutely enjoyed your piece yesterday, too! Great having you here, Mark.  We ought to connect soon. 

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @jennwhinnem Here's a secret...YOU inspired this post in our conversation the other day!!!! So there...you never know what I'm gonna take away when I speak with you. And, everyone with whom I speak provides impetus for blog fodder. I just listen differently. (Hmm, I think that's a post?)

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @Shelley Pringle Hi, Shelley. My iPad last night would not allow me to comment on my own blog, but I got to comment on yours. Fancy that. Was telling me to get my arse up north to visit, I think.

 

As said, I had my first convo with HubSpot yesterday; working on what it all means and whether it's a good move for me. I'm thinking it is, and I'm so pleased to get your recco (on your blog) about it. 

 

As for the book? Just got my Amazon new releases and there's CC Chapman who has just published a book on happiness; uhmm, really? Work hard and Amazing Things Will Happen. 

 

I think we can both write a book. 

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @barrettrossie It's their drive and passion and ambition that puts them all over the place, and  you know what? They started somewhere too, Barrett. You need to keep at it and that's why I want more from you. I love your writing style and voice...please share some of your expertise?! 

 

Thanks for coming by today!  Missing you!!!

New England Multimedia
New England Multimedia

 @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Well, I'm glad I'm not the only one! Like I said to @kdillabough over on her blog post "What Business Must Do To Embrace the Chaos," I live in the "tyranny of the urgent." Right now I live by a To-Do List, and prioritize by, well, by what's urgent.

 

That's why blogging and social media don't always make the top of that list these days. They'e not as urgent as other needs. But as you know, they sure do FEEL urgent when we can't get to them! 

 

Interestingly, Scott has absolutely no problem managing his time and staying on top of everything. He's far busier than I am, since he does all the client work, Wordpress development, and everything else on the technology end. Yet he's as cool as a cucumber, while I always feel under the gun. I'm going to ask him to show me how he uses Outlook before I check out Evernote. He did tell me that he uses Outlook as a task manager, and schedules everything. Maybe I just need some good old-fashioned scheduling discipline.

janemckaycomms
janemckaycomms

 @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Ah well, monetize I suppose... Well, yes, it is making me money but more in the form that it gave my potential clients somewhere to go to view my work and thus made them want to employ me. Plus I've landed a few GPing spots out of it so yes, in the strict sense of the word monetize it's making me money. Great you're embarking on the new and fun! I'm in the great big land of Australia, right down in the bottom right hand corner - Gippsland, 350km East from Melbourne. The the tree/seachange in 2009 and I love it! 

rdopping
rdopping

 @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Oops. I didn't want to give the wrong impression. I have a ton to learn. I was referring to changing direction from where I am going. 

 

If someone finds that their thing is not working then I can see a sea change being beneficial.

 

I suppose I was reading into your suggestions as that and not a tweak to create interest.  I was assuming that someone in PR for example would change gears and start blogging about tech and web design just for a change. I would assume the PR background would feed into it somehow.

 

For instance, I try to stay very close to design and the design profession and am always looking for ways to improve engagement in that niche. If it means investigating some new ways to influence the niche then that's a great way to stay energized.

 

Cheers!

jennwhinnem
jennwhinnem

 @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Ha ha I'm happy to inspire you! I'm trying to feel out how this inspires ME. Like Jelly Helm asks:

 

Question 1:  What do I love?

Question 2:  What do I see that no one else does?

Question 3:  What do I do about it?

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @New England Multimedia   @kdillabough Maybe the first thing is to clock your time all day per tasks you do? Do you think you can forego things eating up too much of your time? 

 

When are you blogging? Night is a good time; Sunday after church when the good vibe is coursing through?

Latest blog post: How Do You Listen?

janemckaycomms
janemckaycomms

 @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing You are a kind and generous person indeed! Thank you for the opportunity to communicate with your #rockhot community. Aussie tales you say? I will put my thinking cap on about the challenges of marketing in this wide brown land. 

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @janemckaycomms Oh whew. If you had a different secret to success I wanted in on that!! Agree in re the blogging and clients -- it puts us right out there so everyone can see our work; full transparency, and that's actually a huge bonus. 

 

Any time you'd like to GP right here and share the land of Aussie tales, I'm so eager. Please be my guest? This awesome community is #RockHot, too. From all over the world. 

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @Erin F. You're right! About 8/9 of what's on that list are my exact to do list! I'm on it for 2013, my luck number year. Have to invest, grow or die. Shoot, the latter is NOT an option!

Soulati | Hybrid PR
Soulati | Hybrid PR moderator

 @Erin F. P.S. We're NOT going to talk about our moms. If she's your muse, then cool...if she's not, then do what you have on YOUR wish list!!

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