One of the advices you get from ‘pro’ bloggers when you are about to start a new blog is to be on every social network conceivable and engage the crowds on those platforms. But, being on every platform is not just limited to bloggers. I personally know many folks who are on every social network I know, tweeting 4 to 6 times a day, posting pictures on Facebook & Instagram, pinning posts in Pinterest and god only knows what Google+ is now, but have presence there too. I have my personal account/blog page on Facebook, blog accounts on Twitter & Google+ and ’use Buffer to cross post. But, whenever I cross post, I feel guilty. Questions swarm my mind, Am I adding value? Am I spreading myself too thin? Am I repeating myself? Do I need to say this? Or am I doing this only to play to the gallery? Do I have enough, valuable, unique things to say/do in every social network? And, recently a funny thing happened. I joined Instagram. Why?
’Cause though I’ve had a phone for quite sometime and an inclination towards photography, I never ventured-in because it was a costly hobby and because I didn’t have enough time. But, that did not stop me from taking snaps whenever I could, with whatever limited knowledge I had. The intent was genuine. But, couldn’t ’ve just used Facebook? Why choose another social network? Focus of the platform, I guess. Just like Twitter is the best place to get the latest news, Facebook, the place to be in touch with family & friends, Instagram is the best place for photography enthusiasts both to showcase and be inspired. So, while I did join yet another social media network, I knew I couldn’t be on so many sites at the same time. I took a relook at my present social media situation. What was I doing on these sites? What could be streamlined?
- Facebook – used for sharing personal stuff.
- Facebook page– I have the most number of followers for the blog on Facebook. Not only that, I also use the page to share quotes & interesting articles I read online.
- Google+: The only reason I’ve been here is to give my blog a presence. And, I do have some people following the blog on this platform.
- Twitter: I use Twitter as a news source; to follow interesting people I like to hear from and hardly put it to personal use. I do share articles/quotes/tidbits if they are less than 140 characters and also retweet.
- Instagram: To share pictures and to get inspired and develop a photographer’s eye and hone my skills.
So, the changes I’ve decided to make to streamline my social media presence are:
- Facebook is now limited to close friends. All posts are private and limited to friends only. I regularly trim my friends list on Facebook to include only those who I know will stop by to talk to me if they see me on the road and not those who’ll either just give a polite smile or a small ‘hey’. I let the natural culling of nature/life do its job.
- Facebook page is more important than ever as I plan to remove the commenting option from the blog and encourage readers to use the page more often.
- I’ve also decided to close my blog’s Google+ page pretty soon as I do not have enough unique ideas/experiences to share and I can’t stand the idea of copy pasting the same matter I shared on Facebook or Twitter.
- There’s still an overlap between what I post on Facebook & Twitter, but, I’m ok with that since Twitter is mostly used as a news aggregator.
As it is repeatedly said, it is not the problem of lack of information today. But, too much of it and the only way to remain sane is to limit our intake and also check if we have something genuine to contribute. We will need to relook at our digital lives from time to time not just to avoid being overwhelmed but also not to overwhelm.