Learning how to do social media can get confusing. Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. LinkedIn. And now you want me to learn Google+ in my spare time?
If you get overwhelmed just thinking about adding yet another social media platform to your overloaded schedule, let’s look at what happens when we learn something new.
There are four levels of learning:
1. We’re not aware that we don’t know something.
2. We’re uncomfortably aware of what is difficult for us to do.
3. We’re able to do the thing, but we’re still doing it the hard way, mustering up willpower and conscious effort.
4. We reach a point where what was difficult to do becomes automatic and easy.
Think about learning to drive a car. When we were fourteen years old we probably thought that driving looked easy and we couldn’t wait to get our learner’s permit. We had no idea how much we had to learn, much like opening a Twitter account and posting our first tweet.
Then we got behind the wheel of the car. Oh, you mean you have to step on the brake to put it in reverse? How can I keep my eyes on the road if I have to keep checking my mirrors? In the same way, realizing that it matters what time we post and that Facebook cover photos have rules can get overwhelming. It’s tempting to quit and think that we’ll never learn all of this stuff.
Next we reached some level of competency with driving a vehicle. We knew how to start the thing and get it out of the driveway, but there was still the matter of driving on the interstate and driving through rain—at night. We still got nervous in heavy traffic. Likewise, we reach a point of some skill with the logistics of uploading photos and posting comments but then it dawns on us that we have to constantly find or create content and plan the balance between types of posts. We can get the job done but it still seems hard.
Finally, we became a good driver. We checked mirrors and drove in the rain without thinking about it. We felt in control and competent as a driver.
And it’s possible to reach that point in learning how to do Social Media, whether you’re just getting started or you need to learn a new platform.
Here are some ways to develop “automatic and fairly easy” in your Social Media skill:
· Get good training. You’re in the right place.
· Set up systems. This will probably involve checklists and automated posting tools.
· Just do it. Over and over.
· Constantly work on your own personal development. Your attitude will show up in your posts and marketing.
· Have the best philosophy. It’s about connection and relationships with people, not about your next product launch.
· And did I mention doing it over and over?
Nobody likes doing what they’re not good at. But the way to get good is to do it repeatedly.
Sure, there’s a learning curve. Yes, they keeping changing things and adding new platforms.
But sitting in the driveway complaining about the next new thing will get you nowhere. Take it slow if you must, but do something. Commit to spending a set time every day on learning and taking action. Choose a Social Media platform to concentrate on for a few weeks, then move on to the next one.
Keep your perspective positive and remember that we develop skill by doing tasks over and over.
Put yourself in the driver’s seat and start your Social Media Driver’s Ed for whatever platform seems mysterious. Before you know it, you’ll be cruising. The time is going to pass anyway and if you get started now you’ll be way down the road instead of wishing you hadn’t stayed in neutral gear. Enjoy the trip!