Social media isn’t a fad. It’s a daily part of our lives. According to Pew Research, seventy percent of Americans use social media with thirty seven percent of them age 65+. So, whether you’re using social media to market your blog or communicate with friends, it’s important to know how to use it well in your encore career.
That’s why I thought it might be helpful to run a series about social media. Think of it as a mini-learning plan. We’ll take a short look at using popular social platforms, but from the viewpoint as part of a marketing engine. The marketing engine, of course, will help drive your unretirement efforts whether it’s through blogging or other types of content promotion. Social platforms can help you showcase your interests and skills, learn about new opportunities, and discover trends you can leverage.
Our first installment is about Facebook. Of all the platforms, I believe Facebook is where most of us already have accounts. According to Pew Research, 72 percent of the American adult population has a Facebook account which they visit at least once a month. Globally, the number is 38.6 percent. The challenge is getting comfortable using a platform for business that we may have exclusively used for personal connections.
What is Facebook?
Okay, you probably already know them, but Facebook is a social networking site that allows you to connect with brands, organizations, family and friends. As of their last earnings report, Facebook broke the 2 billion monthly active user mark. It’s the first social platform to reach that level of popularity.
You Have a Facebook Account, Right?
In case you don’t have an account, Facebook is free. You can learn how to sign up using their help page.
Your 5-Day Plan to Learning Facebook
If you don’t have an account, all of these activities will be new to you. If you do have an account, ask yourself, “How many of these have a done?”
DAY 1 – Post one piece of business news that interests you. Maybe it’s a blog post about leadership, an update about the gig economy, or something about what’s happening in your preferred industry.
DAY 2 – Like a group related to your interests. It can be a professional association that aligns with your unretirement goals. Gig economy sites like Wag! (dog walking on demand) or Helpr for babysitters have thriving Facebook pages.
DAY 3 – Like a business brand page. My guess is at least one of the vendors you currently do business with is on Facebook. Or look for a business you just enjoy. For example, I follow Consumer Reports to help me make informed purchases and Disney because I love their products.
DAY 4 – Like a government agency that pertains to your work. I’ve connected with my local city government – they publish a weekly informational newsletter and announce jobs and purchase requisitions. Facebook Townhall can also help you connect with your elected representatives.
DAY 5 – Get comfortable with notifications. At this point, it’s been about collecting information. If you feel comfortable, take a little time to review your feed to make sure are hearing from the people you really want to hear from. Keep in mind, that could include people or brands.
The easiest way to turn on notifications is by clicking on the three dots next to every status update. That will bring up a small menu. Look for “Turn on notifications for this post” – you may have to click “more” in the first menu.
BONUS! At some point, you may way to create your own business page. You can read all about it in the Facebook Help Center.
Facebook can be a valuable business tool without disrupting our personal space. I go into Facebook several times every day, so there are business things I just prefer to read on Facebook. And I do enjoy being connected to my friends and colleagues there.
Think about blending a little business and personal on Facebook. You might decide that you like it.