Social Media Manager Myths Busted

I hear crazy things about my job aaalll the time. Have you heard things like this before:

“Social media managers don’t make any money. It’s not even a real job.”

Or

“You will be tethered to your phone 24/7 if you get a job like that. It doesn’t sound very relaxing to always be on call.”

These are just two of the common myths I hear people talk about when discussing the job of a social media manager. Let me tell you a little something right here, right now, these are both NOT TRUE! Let’s break it down, plus I add in a 3rd myth:

1.) There is no money to be made in social media: I am living and breathing proof that there is money to be made in social media, and a lot of it! Some of the older generation tends to have a hard time seeing jobs from home as “real” jobs, but that is not something you are probably going to change, so don’t even worry about those opinions. When you are making more money than them and working way less hours, it won’t matter anyway, will it? While it is true some businesses have not yet gone over to the remote work side of things, even for their social media managers, there are PLENTY of businesses that have, and they are just waiting on you to make them a proposal and help them grow their online presence. In my course, I will teach you exactly how to pitch local businesses, and where to find nationwide jobs online. We will talk about proposal letters, what to include in a contract, and how to network with others to get that all important first client. I tell you exactly what I charge and why, and help you come up with your own pricing structure.

2.)You will be tied to your phone 24/7: Definitely not true, but totally up to you! While you do need to be available to your clients for problems and issues in a timely manner, no one expects you to be chained to your phone or computer 24/7. As long as you set expectations ahead of time when creating your contract, you can choose when your “office hours” will be, and how long is an appropriate amount of time to answer a client back. I discuss all of this in my course, and even give you a “day in the life” example of what a day looks like for me.

3.)You have to be an expert in Social Media to do this job: FALSE! While you DO need to have a basic understanding of social media/have experience using your own profiles, it’s not a requirement to have years and years of high level experience to do this job well. My e-course gives you lots of tips and tricks as well as social media best practices examples to make sure you are at the top of your game and can impress a client. Then it’s just making sure you learn a little bit every week so that you are constantly staying ahead of the ever changing curve.


Don’t let these myths stop you from doing something you want to do. You CAN work from home, you CAN work part time but make more than a part time salary, and you CAN make your own hours. I teach you all about it inside my e-course, Social Side Hustle. The pre sale is currently going on until November 3th when the course will officially launch. Check it out now! 

5 Things Friday XXIX

Happy Friday friends! It’s been awhile since I did a 5 things Friday, and I thought it would be a fun way to “catch up” with you all.

1.) A cruise redo: Remember when my husband and I were supposed to go on a cruise with Carnival in September and it got cancelled due to a little thing called hurricane Irma? Well we were finally able to reschedule! It’s a 6 night western instead of an 8 night eastern, but still on the gorgeous Carnival Vista and we are pumped to leave in just over two weeks! You can follow along with me on social media (@heatherslg) and the hashtag #CruisingCarnival.

(I just bought these towel clips so our towels won’t blow away on the ship, I have meant to do it for years!)

2.) Finally fall? Y’all, we had to put our heat on last night! It dropped down to 50 and this girl was cold, but I’m not complaining! We have had record breaking heat this October (90’s!) so I was thankful to get to wear pants and a cozy sweater today. I’m busting out my boots tomorrow! Unfortunately it’s not staying this way, but maybe now we won’t be reaching the 90’s anymore until May? One can hope!

3.) Wine and Dine: I announced on Instagram stories a couple weeks ago that due to the generosity of a sweet friend I will be running the two course challenge! Yes I’m under trained and I have no costume (help?) but I am running both races and am PUMPED! I haven’t run this once since 2013 so it’s time.

4.) Giveaway: Head on over to Instagram because I am hosting a giveaway, a gift certificate, and if you like athletic apparel you need to check it out. It closes in a couple days so hurry.

 

5.) Webinar and pre sale: In case you aren’t on my email list or follow me on social, you may not know my pre sale for my e-course: Social Side Hustle, 21 days to becoming a social media manager, started yesterday. Not only can you get my course at the lowest price now, but you can sign up for a FREE webinar all about getting social media clients. Also if you would like to get on my email list here is the link for that.

I know I just gave you a ton of links and information, but y’all are sharp, I know you got this. I hope everyone has a fabulous fall weekend, has great weather, attends at least two pumpkin patches and three trunk or treats (no seriously we have a really busy weekend!)

QOTD: What are you or your kids dressing up as for Halloween? 

Social Side Hustle: 21 Days to Becoming a Social Media Manager

It’s finally time you guys! What I have been promising for months now is finally done, and the doors will soon open for my e-course which is all about making money from home in social media. This course is for you if you want to work form home part time OR full time, learn how to automate work so that you are working SMARTER and not HARDER, and want a better life for you and your family.

I grew up in a very hard working family. It was instilled in me as a small child that you have to work hard to get what you want in life. While I still believe this to an extent, a lot of us have a tendency to take this a step too far. It hit me one day when I was complaining to my husband. I vividly remember saying to him: “It’s just not fair. I work SO HARD but don’t seem to be getting anywhere. I work way harder than XYZ, and they are doing so much better than me.”

Wow.

So much to digest in that simple sentence.

First I want to point out this isn’t a jealously thing, I am truly happy for those who are happy and successful, this was about me being really hard on myself and trying to “earn” my way to success. I thought that the more hours I put in, the more I focused, and the more sacrifices I made, it would all add up to success on my part. I mean, that’s the “rule” right?

Wrong.

While this is true for some people, what if I told you that you could be successful WITHOUT working more hours, without killing yourself and wearing yourself down, and without stressing about what to do next?

Work smarter, not harder.

As a social media manager, I have figured out a lot of ways, mostly by experience, research, and the knowledge of others, that have allowed me to work this way. I now spend way less time working than I did when I had a 9-5, but I am making more money, AND I get to work from home. How?

A lot of reasons. Not something I can share in one single blog post. Sure there is front in work, but once your processes are all set up, you can use tools and systems to your advantage and work smarter, not harder.

That’s why I created Social Side Hustle. Sure, you could spend years (like I did) spinning your wheels trying to crack the code, and sure, you would eventually figure it out because you are a smart cookie, OR, you could take my course, and learn everything you need to know to work for yourself from home, all in 21 days or less.

I will be sending out emails next week announcing my pre-sale, free webinar, and my launch, so you won’t want to miss it! Make sure you are on the list by signing up here, and you will also get a free social media manager checklist.

Get ready to work smarter and not harder!

 

My Top Twitter Tips

Some people recently have been wanting to shy away from Twitter and say it’s not a valid platform anymore, but I totally disagree. Not only is my following continuing to grow, but I have gotten several Twitter only paid campaigns from brands, gotten paid to host and participate in twitter chats, and have had larger brands tell me they want higher Twitter numbers before they would work with me. So in my opinion, building up your Twitter presence is a good idea.

The first thing you need to remember about Twitter is that you need to be a real person and follow, like, and retweet other people’s stuff, don’t just post your own things. Remember the 80/20 rule, only post 20% of your own content and 80% other people’s, This can be interesting articles, questions, rewteets of recipes, blog posts, sales from stores, etc. While I do automate most of my Twitter posts, I also go in daily and like, comment, and retweet live so that I am interacting in real time with people as well. Even just spending five minutes a day doing this can make a big difference. 

Also, you want to make sure you spread out your tweets to different times of the day. Remember time zones, so only posting in popular times for your time zone is doing your account a disservice since the lifespan of a tweet is so short. While there are certain times of day I focus more on, I try to spread things out and then check my analytics in Sprout Social and see how those posts performed. 

Earlier I mentioned that you need to follow other people. You don’t want to be that account that has 30,000 followers but you are following 100 people. So how do you find the right people to follow who may potentially follow you back? First, Twitter is great at suggesting accounts you may like, so check the sidebar first. Then, do a hashtag search for a tag that has to do with your brand or things you post about, and find people who also post about the same things. For instance, I could personally search hashtags like “Disney, runDisney, fitness running, momblogger, travel, cruise, vacation” and the like. Not only do you want to follow these people, but you want to follow THEIR followers, because those are the people most likely to follow YOU.

I mentioned Twitter chats earlier. These are a great place to get new followers, find like minded people for you to follow, and to just get some exposure in general. A Twitter chat will take place at a certain time and day, and will have a hashtag you should include on every single tweet you post during the chat. That way, other chat participants can find you, reply to you, and follow you. Make sure you talk with other participants, answer the questions the host is asking, and try to be useful if the topic is something you know a lot about. I LOVE using GIF’s in Twitter chats, they are fun, and a good way to be seen when there are tons of tweets in a hashtag feed. 

Another tool I would recommend utilizing on Twitter is Twitter lists. Here you can create separate lists of people you follow, and break them down however you want. If you wanted a list of only runners, you could create that, and then whenever you wanted running content to like or retweet, you just have to go into your list instead of scrolling through your whole feed which will have irrelevant information. From your profile, you should see a button near the top going across the menu that says “lists”. Here you can add lists, and also see what lists you are a member of (ones that others have added you to).

Also, pay special attention to your profile. Here you are given a profile photo and a header/cover photo so use this space wisely. Also be sure to add in your website or link to subscribe to your email list or get a freebie on your blog.

Did you know you can also pin a tweet to the top of your profile that will never be pushed down? Write a tweet you really love, maybe one that links to something important to you, and pin it as long as you like. I switch these out every couple of months. All you have to do is click the drop down on the top right of any tweet, and you should see the option to “pin to profile”. That’s it!

One more tip I use, and I will be honest and say I don’t do it all the time because I lack the time for it, but I personally like to send a tweet thanking someone for following me. Now, before I get flamed for saying this next thing, note this is JUST A PREFERENCE. But I absolutely loathe the automated DM’s I get when I follow people saying “thanks for the follow, you can also find me here here and here.” While I love to automate things, in this instance, I think a personal thank you goes a lot farther in people’s minds than an automation. Again, just a preference.

Download my FREE social media manager checklist and automatically be put on the list to get news on the launch date of my e-course, Social Side Hustle, how to make money as a social media manager, as well as info on pricing and bonuses!

Be sure to check my Facebook page tomorrow afternoon for a video going more in depth into my Twitter strategy!

QOTD: What is your favorite social media platform? Why? 

A Fun Filled Fall

Hey guys! I feel like it’s been awhile since I’m done a post just kind of updating things going on in my world, and what i have coming up. I know I share bits and pieces on social media and especially on Instagram Stories, but I haven’t written out what’s going on in awhile so here goes!

We have quite the busy fall planned, and I realized the other day we aren’t going to be home on the weekend from Labor Day through Columbus Day! So what will we be up to?

Labor Day weekend: Disney invited me and my family to attend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party on Friday night. We decided to make a weekend out of it and are staying two night at Saratoga Springs with my parents for a fun little getaway. Emma Kate and my dad have never been to the party, so I can’t wait to show them everything.

fall

The two weekends after that: Bobby and I leave for our cruise with Carnival on September 9th. I am stoked to have this opportunity and can’t wait to visit some new to me ports and explore the beautiful Carnival Vista.

The weekend of the 23/24th of September is Emma Kate’s third birthday (CRAZY TALK!) and we are spending one night in Disney to celebrate as a family. We are staying at Port Orleans Riverside and have a character dinner. I’m not ashamed to say we are taking advantage of her being free one last time!

The last weekend in September I will be traveling to Rhode Island to run the Ocean Road 10k as part of the Cabot Fit Team. I’m so honored and pumped to be in some cooler weather for the weekend and run a 10k. It’s been awhile on both accounts!

Then Columbus Day weekend Bobby and I will be guests of both Medieval Times and the Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs. We can’t wait to dive into Disney’s Food and Wine Festival which Bobby hasn’t been to in four years. (We may or may not have a three year old tag along, we aren’t sure yet.)

WHEW!

Not to mention, my e-course, Social Side Hustle, will launch right after we get back from the cruise.

It will be hectic, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I absolutely love to travel, and now that Emma Kate is getting a little older I am hoping to do it even more. I love that I live in an area where we can take weekend trips to fun places and not go far (although I love the far away places, too!) I am so grateful for the opportunities I have gotten and can’t wait to bring you along for the ride. be sure you are following me on Instagram, because that is where I will post the most and also on Instagram Stories. Here we go!

QOTD: Are you traveling anywhere this fall? Any races or vacations? 

Growing Your Pinterest: Tips for Bloggers and Social Media Managers

While technically a search engine, Pinterest it frequently gets lumped in with social media and has recently become one of my favorites because of its ease of use and how I can automate most of the work while allowing it to bring a lot of traffic to my website.

Also, be sure to read to the end to get today’s free download!

pinterest

So how do I easily automate pinterest? A beautiful things called Tailwind.

But lets back up a little before I get into Tailwind, because you need to make sure your pins are optimized correctly or they won’t get repined in the first place! The first thing you need to look at is your photos. Pins that are vertical do WAY better than any other pins. This can easily be done in Picmonkey.

Picmonkey is free, but they have a royale version that I use that is super cheap and easy to use. They even have templates already made up for vertical pins, and then you just fill in the box with the photos, text, and overlays you want to use. Then you can upload it straight to Pinterest and add in the website you want it to go to, or add the photo to your blog or website and link to the pin in a post.

A few pin tips:

Make sure you are using a font that is easy to read, that your photo isn’t blurry, and that your colors and text stand out. Here are a couple of examples:

Descriptions:

The next thing you want to work on is your pin description. Keywords go a long way in Pinterest descriptions and will help your pins to be found by the right people. The worst thing you want to do is look spammy and just list out a bunch of keywords. Instead you want to write in sentences and strategically place your keywords within the sentence. Here is a good examples of a description, and I highlighted the key words I wanted to use so you can see how I made them flow in my description:

“There are so many great restaurants in Disney World for kids and adults, but a lot of them require hard to get reservations. Check out my list of the top 5 most overlooked places to dine in Disney. You may find a new favorite menu for your family on their next vacation!”

Boards:

Now let’s talk a little about board names. The names of your boards are just as important as the descriptions on your pins. I know it’s tempting to name your boards super cute and clever things, but those things won’t be as easily searchable. What do I mean? For instance, If you have a board dedicated to children’s clothing but title it “tiny human threads”, that is probably going to not be something people are searching in the search box when looking for children’s clothing. Be smart with your board names to make them show up in results. You can also add a description to each board. Make sure you follow the same keyword advice you used for your pins when creating descriptions for your boards.

Speaking of your boards, you need to remember that your boards are for your readers/customers and NOT for you.

What do I mean by this? If you are working with a brand that sells home furnishings, you will probably have boards for different types of furniture, maybe different rooms in the house, or design ideas. You may personally also like cake. Unfortunately, a board about cake has nothing to do with home furnishings and will look out of place and confuse your followers. You can absolutely still create a board about cake for your personal use, just make it a secret board that only you and whoever you invite to the board can see. I have lots of secret boards. 🙂

Tailwind:

Ok, so let’s jump back to Tailwind. Tailwind is a program that allows you to schedule pins in advance so you don’t have to manually pin them over and over. I can set it up at the beginning of the month and then not have to worry about my pins for four to five weeks! It make my life so much easier and makes me more efficient and gives me time to do other things. I consistently get lots of daily traffic to my blog form Pinterest, all while not having to do anything because Tailwind is working in the background for me. Time is money, so a program like this is worth it’s weight in gold.

If you really want to dive further into Pinterest you can do two things.

1.) Sign up for updates on my course launch, Social Side Hustle, because I go even further in depth with Pinterest inside my e-course.

2.) Take the only social media course I have even taken, called Pinning Perfect. It opened my eyes to the potential of Pinterest and I use lots of the things I learned there today!


***As a blogger and social media manager, it is important that I keep track of the money coming in and going out so I know how much I made at the end of the month.

For today’s freebie download, I have a money tracking excel sheet for you. There are two tabs on the sheet, one for expenses and one for money made. Feel free to edit as it fits in with your business or personal brand, I just wanted to give an example of how I track money coming in and out. Enjoy! 

ONE MORE THING. (I know there are lots of things today!) I will be doing another FACEBOOK LIVE tomorrow hopefully around noon EST. Be sure to follow my page so you won’t miss it. But if you do, you will be able to watch the replay later.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. That means when someone clicks on a link and purchases, I get a small percentage of the sale. I only recommend things I use and love. Thank you for supporting my blog!

Grow Your Instagram Following

Today I wanted to talk a little bit about growing your Instagram following. As I prepare to launch my ecourse next month on making money from home as a social media manager, I want to make sure everyone gets up to speed with their own social profiles, and that you know the basics so you can dive right into my course when it’s ready. Don’t forget to snag the freebie at the bottom of the page. It will also allow you to get updates about my course release!

instagram following

Instagram happens to be my current favorite social media platform. I love it because there are two separate things I can do on the account.

-One, I can post visually appealing photos to grow my following and tell my brand’s story, and

-I can also use Instagram stories to get a little more personal and behind the scenes.

It’s a great way to still post photos without cluttering up your feed with things that just don’t fit. I talk more about Instagram stories in my freebie so be sure to check it out.

Your Feed:

Ok let’s talk about your main feed and things you can do to get more followers. First of all, you want to make sure no one of your photos are blurry, and that they make sense in your feed. If you have a very narrow market, like only posting photos of coffee mugs, don’t randomly throw in a photo of a dog. It just confuses your readers who have come to expect a certain thing. Now if you are a lifestyle blogger like me, you have a little more creative freedom, but that doesn’t mean I just post whatever I feel like.

When people come to your page to decide if they want to follow you or not, they are going to take a peek at your feed as a whole, and if it confuses them or has photos that just don’t make sense, you may get passed over. Think of it this way:

If you went into a shoe store and every time you visited they had lots of shoes, that would make sense right? Then what if one day you went into the store and they were selling school supplies instead of shoes. Wait a minute, but every other time I came in there were shoes? If I had known it was going to be something different than what I was expecting, I wouldn’t have come, right? Think of your feed the same way. If your audience is used to you only posting pictures of your kids, or only posting workout photos, or only posting food photos, and if you all of the sudden start throwing in pictures of cats or rainbows, they may not understand what is going on.

Editing Photos:

I edit every single photo before it goes on Instagram in some way shape or form. Some it’s as simple as cropping in the app, and some get edited on my computer in Picmonkey. Still others get touched up in apps like Snapseed, which is free in the app store. You want your lighting, cropping, and exposure to look the best it can. If I know I’m taking pics for Instagram only, I will set my iPhone camera to “square” so I don’t have to worry about cropping so much or having a photo that doesn’t fit correctly. I also use an app called Isntasize to size down things for me to fit in Instagram. (Snapseed is shown below)

Comment Pods:

Another great way to get better engagement on Instagram is to join comment or like pods. They have gotten very popular since Instagram introduced the new algorithm. Basically, you join a group of people (usually between 10-20), and every time one of you posts a photo, you direct message it to the group in a group chat within Instagram or on an app like Telegraph, then everyone knows to go and like and or comment on the photo to help boost the posts engagement rate. Think of it as a I’ll scratch my back if you scratch yours. It really only works if everyone actually posts and shares and comments, and the best ones have people engage within the first few hours a photo is posted. I am a part of a couple of pods, some have worked and some haven’t. A lot of people don’t realize the amount of work they are on the front end and decide they don’t want to do it, but that’s because they don’t see the value in it or don’t take their business seriously enough. I encourage you to find one or two pods to join!

Links:

A great free tool I use to drive traffic to my blog is called Linktree. It’s a website where you can actually add buttons that link to different posts within your blog. So when you click on the link in my profile, you then can choose which of my posts you want to visit. I can update these at any time, whenever I have a new post or what to highlight an old post. Super easy and effective.

Instagram following

 

Hashtags:

hashtags are great for allowing people to find your content, but they can also be a great tool if used in reverse, for you to find people to follow that could potentially become YOUR followers. Search some common hashtags that have to do with your niche, and find some accounts that you like.

When it comes to you using hashtags on your own photos, hashtags with more photos associated with them are not always the way to go. Try to find some hashtags with less than 100k photos and use those. Your photos have a better chance at staying at the tops of those feeds than using hashtags that have been used several million times.

Another tip if you are a social media manager for a brand especially, is to create a branded hashtag that you use when posting, and that you can encourage others to use when posting about your product or service.

Also be sure to use the location/geotagging so that you appear in local searches for photos!

Be nice:

A tried and true way to gain followers on Instagram is to follow other people, and genuinely like and comment on other photos. Don’t be one of those people who thinks they are better than everyone and is only following 11 people. Use hashtags and find people with great content that you like, and go like and comment on some of their photos. To get their attention, I suggest liking about 5 photos so they will see them in their notifications easier and see that it’s all from one person. What I DON’T like is when people do this just to get a like, then they don’t follow you back, or they do but then unfollow you the next day. There will always be people that play games like that, so just try to ignore it and not let it bother you.

I try to set aside time a couple times a day to like my friends photos, and then search for new friends and people to follow. Just be a real person and it will go a long way I promise!

Thanks for following along! If you want to get tons of great info just like this, but ALL about Instagram stories, be sure to download my free printable cheat sheet here!

HEADS UP: I will be doing a post every week for the next month discussing growth hacks for four different social media platforms, all leading up to the pre-launch and launch of my new social media management E-course. If you are interested in news on my course but don’t care for the freebie, I encourage you to follow the link and subscribe anyway (you don’t have to download the cheat sheet), so you will be first to hear news on my pre-sale (which will be when the course is offered at it’s LOWEST PRICE!)

 

Creating a Social Media Content Calendar + New E-Course News

I spend a lot of time on social media, talking about social media, and researching social media. A lot of people spend mindless hours each day copying and pasting, retweeting in real time, etc. Instead of doing this, I spend a larger chunk of time once a month (or week in some client cases) planning out a content calendar for my own blog and for my clients. That way I only have to do a little maintenance here and there throughout the month. Let’s take a look at my process:

content calendar

The first thing you need to do is get a calendar template. You can use a Google calendar, a free template in Microsoft word, whatever you like the most (heck, pen and paper is fine, too…well, I would use pencil because you will probably end up erasing things).

Once you have your template, it’s time to fill it out…But with what? This is where the researching comes in handy, but don’t worry, once you have done it a few times you will get a lot faster and will be able to skip most of this part. When I first started managing social for my clients, I had to learn about their niche or brand. So let’s say you are doing social media for a clothing boutique. You will need to research…

1.) The best hashtags to use (which periodically changes)

2.) Their competitors (see what is working for them and what’s not)

3.) The clothes they sell (who is the demographic? Are there certain brands or types that are selling better? What words and phrases would appeal to this demographic?)

4.) Which platforms you are using and what times of day perform better on each? (it may take a little trial and error for this one).

This front end research will make your scheduling and posting go much quicker later on down the road.

Ok, so you have your calendar and you have done your research, now you need to decide what types of posts you will be posting on your/your clients pages. These categories will help mix things up so your page isn’t just images or just text or just product information. For instance, some categories for a clothing store could be:

-product photos

-sale information

-videos

-question and answer

-FAQ

-news from the industry

-other people’s content you share/repost/retweet

-repurpose old content <—yes this is ok to do!

Be sure to mix things up! These categories will help you greatly when it comes to plugging in information into your scheduling tool. Like I said, you will get faster and faster each time!

DSC00616

The next piece is to actually come up with the content, which should be easy since you already have your categories and have done your research. This piece may involve creating graphics, finding relevant content to link to, coming up with news or product info, taking pictures or videos, etc. Once you have your content figured out (I personally like to create one long word document with all of my social posts for a client), it’s time to plug it into your scheduling tool.

I personally use Sprout Social. It’s not cheap, but it makes my life easier and my work more efficient so I don’t mind the price. Then it’s just a matter of copying and pasting my posts into the scheduler and picking the times. I then transfer everything into the calendar so I can send it to my client (**Some clients require the exact links and words I am using, others are fine with just knowing what topic I am posting about on what channel/what day.)

GUESS WHAT? I am working on an e-course for those looking into becoming a social media manager as a full time gig or side hustle. I’m SUPER excited to share all I have learned with you, and help you get your first clients and start making money from home! My course isn’t quite ready yet, but you can sign up here to be notified when it is, and also get a FREE printable, a social media manger checklist printable. Just go here to sign up and download!

QOTD: have you ever thought about making money from home with a side hustle?