In a world where we have instant access, instant influence and instant feedback, the mentality of posting for the sake of posting is real. Have you caught yourself rearranging your morning coffee to make it more Instagrammable, composing a tweet while at the checkout, or debating with friends on which hashtags to use to memorialize your weekend trip to the mountains?
Like it or not, this social behaviour is natural.
“Living in and positively contributing to groups helped our ancestors survive extremely harsh conditions. After millennia of group behaviour, we’re fundamentally hard-wired to participate in and support our digital tribe. And biologically, when we’re praised for doing something (e.g. an approving smile, pat on the back, or digital thumbs up) our brain releases dopamine — a reward mechanism produced to let us know that whatever we just did was a positive thing. So, when we check our phones after posting something on one of our social networks, we’re actually looking for a stream of social activity and fix of dopamine.” explains Ian Elliot in his article Click/Flash.
In my honest opinion, just because it’s natural, does not mean it’s OK to post and seek likes and followers and likes and followers alone. Nor does it make it OK to sneak a glance at our Instagram while out for dinner with close friends (not followers). Thank you phone stack! I believe there is a need for balance, and to bring balance to your small business, (and to the world) I ask you to consider #postingwithpurpose.
To post with purpose is to resist the urge to share content for the sake of sharing content because this is what your competitors are doing. What’s important is to consider your purpose, your “why.”
What are your personal reasons for wanting to build your brand? These reasons are what will drive your social media following to grow authentically, and for the word to spread about what your brand stands for.
How is being your honest and authentic self going to impact the success or failure of your business? Being you, is how you’ll build a community of like-minded people who will support your brand for the long haul.
Without your “why” clearly defined, your “what” and “how” won’t matter.
Your “why” is what your audience will use to become inspired in their own lives and take action through your offerings. It will become their definition of the value your brand brings to their lives.
Homework: write your “why” on a Post It and make it visible where you do work, so that you can refer to it each time you update your social media accounts. This will ensure the content you’re delivering is always aligned with your message – so that each post is with purpose.
For me, I like to break free from “spray and pray” social media tactics, and use a heart-centered approach to ensure that I represent my clients brands honestly and authentically, and that their content always enlightens, educates, and inspires.
So go on, take the time to find or revisit your “why” to ensure that you communicate online in a way that connects, converts quickly, and sounds 100% “you.”
For the inspiration behind this blog post read on …
Oddly enough, as I sat down to write this blog in Cardero Bottega, a quaint little cafe in the West End of Vancouver, BC, I looked up from my computer to join the conversation about the penny floor being marvelled at by fellow Saturday morning coffee seekers. Myself, Steven, the gentleman reading the paper next to me, a friendly couple, and the lovely Mexican barista, began chatting about the discontinuation of the Canadian penny, which reminded us of collecting pennies on Halloween for UNICEF. I asked where everyone was from – England, France, Mexico, and Canada – and this then transpired in to a conversation about the hardships of meeting and maintaining a connection with people in the city. What was agreed upon was the dependency we have on our computers and phones … as we stare down, we miss the opportunity to truly connect with those around us.
This open and honest conversation was the perfect reminder of the importance of connecting beyond the screen. This happenstance confirmed that writing with purpose, in my humble opinion is precisely what will set your small business apart from the next. So when it comes time to sit down to schedule your social media posts, consider your “why”, this will help you to make clear decisions about the content you share, which will speak to the people you want to work with, and ensure you don’t end up miserably working with the wrong clients for your business. Post with purpose. Connect with like-minded people. Generate conversations that convert. It’s that simple.
by Liz Hammond, Founder of Honestly Social. Allow Honestly Social to learn your voice and communicate in a way that connects honestly, converts quickly, and sounds 100% authentically “you.”