Friday, July 17, 2015

Social Media Mania


Welcome to the first That Time of the Month linkup! I'm co-hosting this venting session with HoHo Runs! The purpose of this link up is to give bloggers a chance to vent about something that's bothering them! The rules of the linkup are simple: keep it clean (my mom reads my blog), play nice, read at least 2 other posts in the linkup, and link back to the hosts! Thanks for partaking in what should be a fun linkup! Please join us every 3rd Saturday of the month and let it all out!

************************************


What's eating me lately? I'd have to say that I'm feeling overwhelmed by social media these days. While growing this blog is one of my goals, I've had to expand my social media reach in order to get more exposure. With all the different social media channels, there has been a learning curve for me. And some growing pains. Lots of growing pains.


I started blogging about 18 months ago, and started my Facebook page at the same time. Facebook (FB) continues to be one of my biggest sources of blog readers, and I don't have many issues with FB. We've got a really great community of runners on FB, and I've enjoyed interacting with them and meeting and befriending a lot of them. While I've mostly had a great experience on FB. I've had a bit of link dumping--weight loss products I'm talking about you-- and spam, and when I see those, I just delete and block those folks from my page. Who needs them? Who wants them? The one thing that FB has recently started doing, and something I find really annoying, is posting in my personal feed when my friends comment on anything. So that means all my friends get to see everything I comment on. Which is a lot, because I like to support my fellow page admins. I find FBs sharing of everyone's likes a bit intrusive. I'd rather just read what I want to read. I don't care what other people comment on. The other thing about FB that has been challenging me is trying to maintain some distance between my personal life as a nurse practitioner and my blogging/FB personna. I would love to deactivate my personal page, but FB doesn't allow you to have a page without a personal page. Those of you who follow me on both pages may have noticed that I've changed my name on my personal page, and that's to keep the creepers away--I've had a lot of friend requests from people I don't know--and to keep patients and parents from contacting me. I've been getting more and more messages from patients, and not only is it an invasion of my privacy, it is also a HIPAA violation for me to provide any information to them via FB. It's also unprofessional. I never thought I'd have this issue, but in this day and age of oversharing, it's very real.

So many food pictures!
Instagram (IG) started out to be pretty fun, but as my reach on that platform has increased, I've noticed some troubling trends. When I initially signed up for IG, I signed up for a private account, again trying to maintain some sense of privacy. I thought this would enable me to approve my followers. But I soon learned that wasn't going to work so well for me if I wanted to grow my blog, so I opened my account back up. 90% of the people who follow me are legit. But there have been some weird followers... people who have no followers of their own...people who post sexy pictures...a guy whose description says he helps people fire his boss...someone promises me they will grow my IG but has no posts of their own..oh, and those people selling seaweed wraps--you get the picture. I've blocked some of the really questionable accounts. I have to be pretty diligent. I do check all my likes and follows. I don't want to invite trouble. And then there's that whole other animal, the follow/unfollow folks, who do it just to build up their numbers, not because they are interested in anything I post. Did you know that you can pay for IG followers? That there's a "bot" you can install that will follow and unfollow for you automatically? Seriously! But as more advertisers want bloggers with lots of engagement, yes, this is what people are doing to get campaigns.

And you wonder why I waited to long to join Twitter...
And then there's Twitter. I resisted joining for so long, and I just recently took the plunge. So far, so good. Yes, I'm getting more hits on the blog, which has been great. My most recent book club author retweeted my review, along with the reviews of everyone who linked up with me. That's really cool! I also loved being able to retweet all the book reviews of everyone who linked up. I like the idea of being able to tweet about a blog post I read and sharing it with like minded followers. But on the other hand, I'm still trying to figure the whole thing out. I was being followed by someone named Sex Toy Diva who was retweeting my tweets. Some might think any engagement is better than none, but you know that saying that you're judged by the people you hang out with? Sex Toy Diva? Oh, hell no! I figured out how to block her. I don't get why she'd want to follow me. I'm all running all the time--and that's all I tweet about. I've been added to "lists" and I don't understand what it means to be added to a list. Some dental company added me to their list. Why? I have heard that runners have bad teeth, but I don't think that has anything to do with this add. So I figured out how to get off the list. I have also gotten a large number of followers of companies promoting their products and services. Do I follow them back? Most of them, I have not, because I'm simply not interested in what they are promoting. Stay tuned...


I've been on Pinterest for a long time, and in the past, I always used the site to store all the running memes that I came across. I'm kind of a hoarder like that. But more and more bloggers say that Pinterest is a great way to spread the word about their blogs. I have to admit that I don't really look at Pinterest very often. There's just too much information--it's like a bulletin board where you just tack up everything you don't want to lose track of. I'm sure if I sat down and got more organized, I would get more out of it. But who has time for that? Out of all the social media channels I've dabbled in, I would say that Pinterest is the biggest time suck of them all. I will say that I have made some pretty amazing desserts from some of the recipes I've found on there.


There's are other social media sites that I'm not as involved with...Google+, You Tube, Tumblr, Snapchat, and the newest one that's got everyone all abuzz...Periscope. Too many social media channels and too little time. I'm just trying to put out quality content on my blog, and that takes a good deal of time. I love the reciprocity of the blogging community, and how most bloggers will come back to your blog to leave a comment if you've left one on theirs. Speaking of that, I read every comment posted on my blog and I respond to all them. But lately, I've noticed a trend of some readers not seeming to read my blog before commenting. Hey guys, I can tell. Just last week I posted about being inspired by my son and his rugby teammates, and by my friend Michelle who ran an Olympic distance triathlon. No one mistook me for my son, but several people congratulated me on my triathlon and complimented me on my trikit. That's just sad. Although Michelle and I kind of laughed about it!

I didn't expect this to get so long winded, but hey, it's venting session, right? For better or for worse, there's a lot of options available if you want to connect with like minded people. I'm not sure I like all of it. I have met some amazing people through Facebook and blogging, and for that I'm grateful. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out in the future!

What are your thoughts on social media? What platforms do you participate in? What is your favorite place to post? Do you get a lot of spam? Do you block people?



42 comments :

  1. LOL. My son just had me get Whatsapp so he could send me pictures from China. You forgot to mention Periscope, which I'm already over but feeling like I'm missing out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh but I did mention Periscope! I don't know about the Whatsapp app...

      Delete
  2. So far the only social media I use is Facebook. My husband is telling me I need to get on Twitter. He said he'd help me since he runs a company's Twitter account. I know it would help me grow my blog but I feel like I don't want to devote anymore time to being online. There's the blog, which is time consuming, and then of course I am one of those people that get SUCKED into Facebook. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seriously. I am the same way. As you can tell! So far Twitter hasn't taken up a bunch of time. It's just weird--I just don't get it.

      Delete
  3. LMAO this morning, I almost wrote about the same thing. How many more things can I learn? My hubby already thinks I am crazy! and what does it mean to be added to those lists? FB drives me crazy because it chooses who it will show my post too, really? UGG it is all mind blowing for sure! Well I am glad we all found each other :) Happy Saturday Wendy! I am gonna try for 6 miles this morning before it goes from 95% to 98% humidity! and I can't forget a selfie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad I found you and don't forget we have a date next March in Sarasota! :)

      Delete
  4. All so true! I love it. I feel the same way, but I have to say, you are doing awesome on the social media front!! Way to keep it hidden that you are having troubles with it because I couldn't tell. Keep up the good work! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do try to keep it positive on the blog--I don't want to scare people away. When Holly approached me with this idea, I thought it was great! I already know what next month's post is about. And the one after that... LOL!

      Delete
  5. Well, you know I'm not a fan of FB. Been there, done that, deleted it. I am on Pinterest but don't use it. I don't get why we need a bulletin board. I recently added some pics to Instagram finally. I doubt I'll ever do Twitter. Runners have bad teeth - LOL. I don't think twice about deleting or blocking people or comments I don't like. It's my blog, right? You have done a great job with growing your blog by the way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love my FB running page. I love the interaction with other runners. IG and Twitter are ok.

      Delete
  6. It can get overwhelming to keep up with everything and just when you get the hang of things, it changes or something new comes out. My blog is still new and I'm still learning but I caught myself getting too caught up in the logistics and numbers of everything. I post #1 for me to keep a record, to remember where and what I was going through at the time and to motivate me. #2 to inspire others to change. I get inspired by reading and seeing stories and that is exactly what got me started so I hope to help someone else. Your doing a great job with your blog and all the outlets of social media! If you struggle with it, you sure can't tell :) Thanks for the new link up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't know your blog was new! You do a great job! I agree with you, my blog #1 is a personal record for me.

      Delete
  7. I was kind of flummoxed that I had to have a personal FB page to have a community one. It makes no sense to me. Of course I've now embraced & reconnected with some old friends.

    Obviously I just took the Instagram plunge, and I must say the amount of men liking some of my photos (not that there are a lot of them, men, that is) is just a wee bit creepy. It's not like I'm a Barbie either, some of my KB photos kind of make me cringe, but I'm hoping to inspire other women.

    I'd like to grow my blog to, but not necessarily overnight, so I'm taking it kind of slow & this week has been busy so I kind of fell off FB & I don't even work how do you people do it all?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Flummoxed is my new favorite word! Because that describes how I feel about juggling work and social media! Oh, and my family stuff too...

      Delete
  8. I'm with you!! Between blogging, FB, Twitter and IG, I'm making the rounds daily and often. At times, it's a complete chore to check and keep up with it all. I'm sure there is some tool I'm misding that connects them all. I've tried Hootsuite but then that just felt like I was checking one more thing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. One of my partners at work told me about an app that links everything but he couldn't remember what it was called. If I find out, I'll let you know!

      Delete
  9. Patients contacting you via FB? Now that is just crazy. I haven't put energy into Instagram, Twitter, etc., and only a bit onto FB blogging-wise. Perhaps my blog will remain tiny, but I just didn't want to put the time into those platforms.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I really wish it was possible to not have a personal FB page and only have a page for my blog, but it is what it is. That being said, I am pretty sick of FB as a whole lately and have been dealing more with IG and Pinterest.

    Jen@Jpabstfitness.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I"m hearing that a lot! I still get a lot of engagement on my FB page, so I'm sticking around for now.

      Delete
  11. I'm so new at blogging. The only thing I got into in addition to my blog is Facebook. I simply don't have the time right now for all Social Media outlets. The blog itself, and learning all the ins and outs is all I can do at the moment. Inappropriate content I would definitely block from my blog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's how I started, with my blog and FB. Once things got rolling, I added the other outlets.

      Delete
  12. Oh boy....I could talk about this forever....There is a limited amount of time that I can invest in blogging and getting followers....So I blog and I put it on my personal Facebook and on twitter (where I have not many followers at all).... and that's that. I can't invest time in this whole getting instagram and twitter followers, which at least for me especially with instagram, I don't think really translates into people reading my blog..... Patients and Facebook....(and coworkers and Facebook)....a whole other issue.....If they friend request me, mostly I'll accept especially if it is a mom and not a dad....don't want to go down that path.....but then if they message me with a medical issue, I message back saying I'm sorry I can not use Facebook for that.... tumblr and all this other stuff..... for me it's just too much.... everyone has different goals with their blog.... for me, if I am reaching 20 people who are genuinely interested, then that is more important than 100 people peripherally following.... And as for following other blogs, I have had to limit the ones that I follow....stopped following a few when they were blogging about things that I did not agree with (runner mom's getting in on giving advice on giving vaccine to kids...oh no, don't go there).... or stopped following when they were just posting their workouts and what they eat or recipes... I don't care about that....give me REAL content like YOU are doing....and tie it in to your running life and your races.... did I just write an entire blog post on your blog....sorry, but I'm passionate about this topic!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love this! You said just what I feel. Altho as my blog engagement has increased, I'm finding reward in that. I love hearing when I touch someone, that something I said was meaningful to them. Some of the opportunities I get through blogging are fun too. And meeting other bloggers is the icing on the cake (which you will see in today's post!)

      Delete
  13. Yes to all of this. I've been blogging for a couple of years and at the beginning of this year I decided to try to really put in an effort to grow my readership, so I got much more involved and active on social media. I discovered that with attention comes negative attention and I'm not so sure that having more readers was worth that. And the time involvement was just too much for me with an extremely demanding full time job, marriage and two kids. So, I took a mini-break for a couple of months and am slowly coming back. I'm mainly focusing on writing genuine content and letting the readers show up if they're interested. I truly enjoy visiting other blogs and exploring social media, but on my list of priorities, that has to fall to the bottom (below family, work and fitness)...although it still ranks above house cleaning and laundry, lol! Great and thought provoking post!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's my biggest worry, the negative attention...I've been pretty lucky so far, but as things grow, I get some weird messages. For me, it's still all about the blog. I love to write, and that's what it's all about...putting out quality content and getting people thinking! Thanks for the thoughtful comment!

      Delete
  14. I look forward to following (and linking!) with this...just not this weekend (you may have heard, I had a small race this weekend....). I can tell you a few of my BIG social media annoyances, though, without having to write an entire post about them (ahem):
    1- people who consistently tag themselves in other peeps' pics, especially if they're just casual "social media"acquaintances and not
    "real life" friends (usually these are the peeps photo-bombing the "real" friends in the foreground LOL)
    2- people tagging other people who are NOT in their posted pic (ummm, are they trying to make this excluded person feel even more excluded?)
    3- posting pics of themselves that were taken in mirrors (hello? did they not notice the words on their "favorite shirt" are reflecting backwards for the rest of us to decipher?)
    4- in depth conversations that go back and forth with several replies between the parties (I believe that's what PM's are for, or texting, or a good old-fashioned phone call would work better)
    5 - peeps who are constantly posting pics of their "healthy" meals. UGH. Unless they have a health food page (which I probably would NOT follow), I wish they'd quit trying to impress the rest of us with their green smoothies and brown food

    Whew! That felt good! (thanks for letting me rant!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am so with you on the food posts! It's just not my thing. I like donuts, really... :p

      Delete
  15. I love your new linkup and had hoped to link up, but we were out of town this weekend. Hopefully, I can next time!

    Yeah, I'm on too many social media platforms... On FB, Twitter, and Pinterest, I have both DebRunsFIT and personal accounts. Because of time constraints I rarely use my personal Twitter and Pinterest accounts, though. Instagram is by far my favorite, because I can post my cool GoPro pics there; however, I don't get a lot of blog hits from it, but then, I don't usually use it in that way either. My husband and sons have been talking about Periscope, but I have a headache just thinking about adding something else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't get a lot of hits from IG either! Other bloggers really talk it up, but I get most of my engagement from FB, twitter, and other blogs. Interesting, isn't it?

      Delete
  16. I've got a "First World" rants post just as a draft, I need to revisit it and maybe add here!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I can't tell you how much I hate that Facebook now shows everything everyone comments on! First, I don't really want what I say in one conversation broadcast to everyone. Second, I don't want to know what other people "like" or comment on. Some people I know follow some crackpot sites. Fine for them, but I don't want to see it. Then there are the anti-animal cruelty organizations that my friends like that seem to want to further their cause by continually showing pictures of injured animals. Who wants to keep looking at that? We get the point.
    Currently I'm going back and forth on Instagram. I prefer it to Facebook right now, but I've kept it under control. I think I only posted my IG user name once on my blog, so I don't have a ton of people looking at it. I recently changed it to private. Like you, I get the strange followers who don't seem to be real people. It's just a bunch of half naked shots. I really don't get it. Every once in a while, I want to shut it all down...blog, FB, Twitter...all of it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm feeling that I want to shut it down more and more...

      Delete
  18. I love your link up idea. I actually wrote a post for it then backed off from sharing it. I confessed to HoHo already I am thinking about not blogging anymore.
    I struggle with sharing sometimes, mostly because I feel like it's not being received as I intended. Writing can be tricky.
    I like IG, but I don't FB or Twitter much at all. Especially FB, it seems like if I do post something I get a lot of people who want to give an opinion or lecture...
    I have blocked many people because they just get aggressive about tearing apart stuff you post, it gets old. I have enjoyed blogging for the most part, but it is out here for anyone to see and I am not sure how much personal I want to share.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like your blog, and I haven't read anything that seemed cringeworthy to me...I think you do a great job. It's fun to read what everyone is doing because even though we all like to run, we're all on our own journeys. I hope you reconsider...and think about posting what you wrote!

      Delete
  19. Oh, my gosh; the Instagram crazies are the worst - ha! The wraps, the wannabe porn stars, the companies...oh, yes, they are all there! IG did a mass cleanup awhile back and lots of folks were taken off due to the illegitimacy of their accounts; maybe they'll do that on a regular basis. I don't worry too much about; they usually fall off after awhile, anyway. It's crazy, though, right?

    ReplyDelete
  20. Uggh, I'm right there with you. I can't keep up AT ALL!! I've let FB go to the wayside, I'm not really getting much interaction over there and my posts are only viewed by a few hundred people, so I've refocused my energy on Instagram. Twitter I still have a hard time with, I'm too long winded for 120 characters :) It is totally overwhelming sometimes and makes me want to hang it up to be honest sometimes!! There just isn't enough time in the day!

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a great post. I admit, before I started blogging I thought facebook was a waste of time, thought twitter was dumb and don't get me started on IG! Now I at least "understand" each of them but I Do not like how FB shows everything. I feel like I can't do anything on my own computer without it wanting to share my actions on FB. No thank you. I have never "unfollowed" people on social media cus i'm not that savvy to figure it out, but I will no longer "follow" people just because they follow me. There are too many folks who just want to post about wraps, shakeology, or bikini pics of themselves. My numbers are lower than most other bloggers but I don't mind. I'd rather have genuine interactions with people than have a whole lot of spammers following me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Seems like you have really good engagement on your blog, so clearly you're doing something right! I'm with you on the following thing. Mostly on Twitter, I'm being followed by businesses. So weird.

      Delete