Bad at social media? You’re not alone.

Phone open to the Facebook login screen with Scrabble tiles that say 'social media'

If you asked a group of bloggers what their least favourite part of blogging is, I’m willing to bet that most of them would say self-promotion. It’s a big part of blogging – maybe bigger than actually writing stuff – but not all of us feel comfortable shouting about ourselves all over social media.

LOOK AT ME! I WROTE A THING! LOOK LOOK LOOK AT MY THING! ARE YOU LOOKING YET?

It makes me feel kind of gross. And I’m not very good at it.

The irony is that I’m not bad at social media in general. Actually, I’m kind of good at it. As part of my job as a digital content marketer, I help manage the social media accounts for an organisation that has over 200,000 followers across its social platforms. I’ve run successful social media campaigns that have generated real leads for my employer. I know how this stuff works.

But when it comes to my blog social media, I’m crap – as are many of us. Here’s why:

It feels too much like work.

This doesn’t really apply unless you spend your days poking around in Hootsuite like I do, but nothing makes you feel anti-social like a day of being professionally social.

It takes up too much time.

At work, my fellow digital content colleagues and I take turns running the social media accounts for our organisation. That means that one or two days a week, I literally do nothing but tweet, write LinkedIn posts and respond to Facebook comments for eight hours straight.

That’s what it takes if you want your blog social media to be successful – treating it like a job. You can’t just dip in quickly over your lunch break and then again before you go to bed. Social media is always on, and you need to be too – engaging with others, sharing content, pinning, tweeting, liking, commenting, etc.

I can’t always be on. When I’m at work, I’m focused on work. When I’m home, I’m playing with my daughter and trying not to dick around on my phone too much. I have two or three hours to myself every night after she goes to bed, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to spend those hours scheduling tweets and scrolling through Instagram.

Especially Instagram. I don’t even have a love-hate relationship with that platform – I just kind of hate it. I have a feeling my relationship with Instagram is doomed to be like my relationship with raw tomatoes. I’ve tried to like them and I know things would be a lot easier if I did, but they make me feel kind of icky.

Speaking of…

Social media fakeness can be soul-destroying.

My Twitter account gets weird followers every day – a mattress company in Spain, a nanny service in London, a marketing company in California, a guy whose profile is in Russian. I know these people aren’t genuinely interested in what I have to say. They’re following me because they’re hoping that I’ll follow them back – that’s all.

Social media is just a numbers game for a lot of people, especially when it comes to blogging. Like my page and I’ll like yours. Join an Instagram pod where you’re forced to comment on the photos of everyone in the group so they will comment on yours. Start unfollowing people to make your own follower numbers seem bigger in comparison.

Yeah, there are a lot of people who use social media in genuine ways – to interact with others, to share news, to discuss ideas – but getting followed by a dozen Twitter eggs in one day is enough to make you want to chuck your phone in the toilet and retreat to your bed to read an actual book like a nerd or something.

Not that I would ever throw my phone in the toilet. Opting out of social media isn’t really an option anymore – especially not if you’re a blogger. I’ll promote this post on my social media accounts, but I won’t love doing it. And only a handful of people will read it, because I haven’t done it properly. But there are worse things.

Like Instagram.

 

Diary of an imperfect mum
A Mum Track Mind
My Petit Canard

78 Replies to “Bad at social media? You’re not alone.”

  1. Great post! Thought it was just me! #StayClassyMama

  2. oh how I can relate to this! I feel so awkward about self promotion because most people on my social media are actually family and friends so I also feel shy giving myself a shout out.
    Thanks for this honest post #stayclassymama

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I’m glad it’s not just me! Self-promotion can be so awkward.

  3. High five! This is a post that I totally relate to. I’m only on social media for my blog, as I absolutely hate its fakeness. I too am absolutely crap at it and don’t give it the time I should. Now I’ve written a book and want an agent and I’m worried that my lack of time spent on social media will go against me – but I don’t have time! I have a job and loads of kids etc. Thank you for your honesty. Alison x #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      The fakeness can be so depressing at times – and who has the time to do it properly? I’m in awe of people who manage it – I assume they just don’t sleep!

  4. I win, i frequently write posts and completely fail to promote them on social media full stop. Like the one i wrote yesterday. I might get round to it but it’s the thing you say – it’s hard work, it takes up valuable time, it makes me feel a bit vacuous, it gets in my head so i can’t sleep and I’m not very good at it! Although i suppose i’m telling you via your blog which is a form of social media so i have in fact promoted my post now. Job done!? I veer slightly from you though in that so far i am sort of enjoying instagram. It’s making me take pictures of things i would have just looked at and thought were nice before. But having them in documented fashion is quite special. I don’t massively like the filtering thing…i was thinking of writing a post about it, also since tellingly the two pics i’ve had ‘featured’ in roundups were, get this, hashtag filterless…
    I’m waffling.

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I sometimes forget to promote posts too! Regarding Instagram, maybe I need to give it more of a chance – would love to read your post about filters!

  5. Self promotion Is definitely a lot of work #stayclassymama

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Indeed! So much more work that you realise when you start blogging.

  6. I hate Insta and FB. I don’t use either one. But, I’ll admit that I love me some Twitter.

    It does seem to be a numbers game for most. It’s easy to get caught up in the whole “Oh, look how many followers I have.” For me, I don’t really care. Follow me or don’t, you know?

    Self-promotion is hard. (I can’t believe I just said that.) But yeah, it definitely is.

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I think I’m most comfortable on Twitter too – I’m okay with FB but I hardly have any followers there, so it’s not really worth me putting much effort into it.

  7. I hate blowing my own trumpet so I do dislike the self promotion bit. I think what I dislike more is, as you said, the time consuming nature of it. I have had to wind myself in a bit when I’ve realised I’ve spent 8 hours ignoring my children to promote a blog where I write about my children. Soon every post will be “children watched 61 episodes of Masha and the Bear whilst I tweeted”.
    It goes against the very reason I started my blog.
    I need ‘people’ to do stuff for me 🙂 #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      You’re so right! If I ignore my daughter than I’d have pretty much nothing to write about…so nothing to promote. It’s important to focus on why you started blogging in the first place.

  8. YES, YES, YES to so much of this! I really hate promoting myself. I never tweet other bloggers asking them to read my blog, I only do it when I have a guest poster as I feel that I owe it to that person. I hate inviting people to like my facebook page, I’m not sure if I’ve even done it. But I LOVE INSTAGRAM. That is where I can just scroll through all of the photos and switch-off. But if anyone posts a comment on my photo that is automated then I delete it! Also I have auto twitter dms too!

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I’ve never tweeted at other bloggers either! I very reluctantly invited a few friends to like my FB page, but only my really close ones. I think maybe I need to give Instagram more of a go – so many people love it that I must be doing something wrong.

  9. Oh god hun I totally agree with you. I do the promotion but screaming look at me really isn’t my things nor are pods and Facebook threads I’m afraid but each to their own. I do love IG though! Thank you for linking up to #ablogginggoodtime 🎉

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Another IG lover! Maybe I just need to spend more time trying to like it…

  10. I’m not so into social media – I do twitter properly but that’s about it. I go to instragram briefly each day and hardly ever do fb for the blog…just hopeless…I think from time to time I need to work insta more, but I just can’t be bothered to be honest #Stayclssymama

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I can’t even manage to get on IG once a day, so it sounds like you’re doing pretty well!

  11. I went from blogging to then working in social media – so my job feels like my hobby and not the other way around. And I only use Hootsuite at work!! 😄 I just love social media and am so grateful to do my ‘hobby’ for my job! #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      You’re lucky that you love it! I actually don’t mind doing it in a professional setting – when I have the time to do it properly – but I can’t give my blog social media the attention that it needs.

  12. This is so true for so many of us!!! For me, it’s Facebook. I absolutely hate the thing, which is kind of a downfall in the blogger world given that it’s probably the biggest social media platform out here. To this day, the most views and visitors I have had on the blog are from the day Mr C demanded that I allow him to share the blogs link on his Facebook page. And then there’s the guilt; I’ve just a couple impromptu days off social media, and all I can think about is how I should have been posting x, y, and z… And self-promotion? Eurgh… That’s all. #StayClassyMama

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Oh, the guilt! I get so much social media guilt. Just today I realised that I forgot to post my most recent blog post on my Facebook page. Ugh.

    2. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Oh, the guilt! I get so much social media guilt. Just today I realised that I forgot to post my most recent blog post on my Facebook page. Ugh.

  13. Yes! This! I can’t bloody stand it, it’s just so time-consuming and soul destroying when you realise how often you need to be doing it for real results! xx #stayclassymama

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I know, right? It takes way more time than you think when you first start out.

  14. Ugh, the falseness! I think that’s what gets me. I’m never sure if someone’s genuinely interested or interested in a numbers game for themselves. I’ve never been too good with it all in fairness but I’m learning – and cringing! #Blogcrush

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      The falseness can be so depressing – sometimes you get a comment and it’s clear the person hasn’t even read your post!

  15. I’m always surprised by how many people always say that twitter is their favorite platform. maybe it just never caught on around here, but barely anyone I know in real life uses it and I just can’t seem to get any traction there. Not enough hours in the day to devote to everything I suppose #blogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Everyone has a platform that they’re not that comfortable with. I’m good with Twitter, I like Facebook but can’t grow my followers, and Instagram…well, I think I’ve made my feelings on that clear.

  16. I hate self promotion, it’s the one thing I struggle with. I love Instagram but I hate Twitter, I just don’t get it and it’s too fast moving! #fortheloveofBLOG

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Twitter does move fast!

  17. I really like Instagram – Pinterest is my nemesis and feels like more work than anything else. But I totally agree on the fakery thing – I have no idea how to connect with potential readers rather than other bloggers. How many ‘ordinary’ people use 30 hashtags that they can then be found via? I’ve met lots of lovely bloggers but… that’s not meant to be the point is it?! #fortheloveofBLOG

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I don’t use Pinterest at all – I don’t think it really fits with my blog. And all the hashtags drive me nuts!

  18. Ah it’s hard to get in social media time for yourself when you’ve got so little free time! At the moment, Instagram is my friend, not sure why but my last few posts have been more popular than anything I’ve posted EVER. Who knows why lol. twitter feels like talking into a black hole at times which can make it feel really awkward really fast!
    Hope your love hate relationship improves!!

    #fortheloveofblog

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I know what you mean about Twitter – there’s so much noise in there that it’s easy to feel a bit lost!

  19. I don’t really notice all the fakeness, but I so hate having to promote my posts. Even on the occasion when I have the time to Buffer a load of auto tweets, it feels like I’m cheating.

    Guess I’ll never be the #nexttopblogger

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I sometimes feel like I’m cheating when I schedule tweets too, but hey – you do what you have to do.

  20. Totally hear you. Social media is like going down the rabbit hole. It’s never ending. And you just can’t get out. And that’s HARD when you are working and being a mom, wife, human, friend…sigh.

    Great post. #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Never ending is right!

  21. I hate self-promotion too. I’m kind of ok with twitter to an extent (well I’m winging it and it seems to be doing ok), but everything else is just a bit mind-boggling. I don’t even know what I’m meant to do with Facebook so it’s just sitting there at the minute. Maybe I’ll figure it out one day.
    #Ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I found Twitter much easier to build up than Facebook – though I doubt that most of my Twitter followers have any interest in what I have to say!

  22. Good post, most people on my social media are actually my family members. thanks for sharing.

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Ha! My family members are definitely my most engaged Facebook followers.

  23. All true points here! I hate Instagram for the follow game, I can now tell who is going to to do this so I am no longer drawn in by it all. They always unfollow 1-3 days later. I have one company that has some sort of obsession with doing it, even when I followed them back they eventually unfollowed and guess what?… Today they have followed me again, bore off! #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I hate it when companies do that! I have one company that has been following/unfollowing me on Twitter for months.

  24. Oh yes I really don’t like the social media side. I hate that it’s there ALL THE TIME and even when I’m wanting to take some time out from it, there might be a really important message that comes through that I should reply to (because everything seems to happen in real time these days, grrr). I don’t even have an instagram account – I’ve heard all kinds of frustrating stories about the tactical games over there so, for now, I’m keeping well clear! #blogcrush

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      It’s impossible to always be on, isn’t it? Sometimes you just want to take a break from it all…but then you come back to dozens of alerts and it can be kind of stressful.

  25. This is so relatable! I hate the follow / unfollow game, so frustrating! It’s hard not to ge sucked in but I’ve learnt it’s best not to! #marvmondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Who has time to just follow/unfollow people all day? I don’t get it.

  26. Oh I totally and utterly understand where you are coming from about the time aspect and the treating it like a job. I, however, adore instagram but it does take work – but I do feel the engagement there is much more positive than twitter but then I am a sucker for a pretty picture! I guess if my work was social media then I definitely wouldn’t want to pay any attention to my own social media – however, you could make your own instagram such a success – send me some tips!! #MarvMondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Your Instagram feed is lovely – if my pictures were half as good, maybe I’d like it too!

  27. I really like this post and have a love hate relationship with social media. I don’t often have time to get on twitter and publicise but do what I can and conpletely relate to getting complete randoms following in the hope you follow back. I joined Facebook recently but never use it. The only one I really use is instagram but completely agree about false ideals. Thanks so much for joining us for #marvmondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I think all social media can create false ideals – it’s so hard not to fall prey to that.

  28. I find it really hard to keep up. I do enjoy Insta actually but again it’s all work. Plus I prefer to put up silly photos!! Can’t be arsed with staging and all pretty. I’m like you and don’t want to be on my phone all the time around my girls. Totally about the balance and will have to do!! xx #marvmondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Silly photos are more fun! Most of my photos are ridiculous.

  29. I takes TOO MUCH TIME!! esp for social media for your blog. Apparently to beat the Facebook algorithms , you need to post every hour. Every hour? you mean 24 posts a day? 720 great, curated links a month?

    seriously?!

    #marvmondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Every hour! I can barely think of something to post once a day!

  30. I love the writing, I tolerate the photography I hate the social media bit. You’re right, it does feel a bit like, “Look at me. No me. NO ME!!!!” I’m terrible at it, the number of posts I’ve forgotten to tweet, pin or instragram … Opps! Glad I’m not alone

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I’m with you there – writing, photography and social media, in that order.

  31. It makes me feel kind of gross…hehe I cried with laughter at this! I like social media but don’t like that if you let go of the reigns for a second you are buggered…also I say I love it…I like twitter because I get that…It has taken me 8 months…Facebook is my nemesis and don’t even get me started on Pinterest…If I focus on growing one I will forget the others..you have to be so amazingly dedicated to get all the plates spinning! Thank you for joining us at #Staycassymama xxx

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      If you ever manage to work out Facebook, let me know! I just can’t seem to crack it.

  32. A very honest post – love it! #ablogginggoodtime

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Thanks!

  33. I really like this post. It’s honest about social media, which can be a chore. I’m not the best self-promoter at the best of times. I realise I may not gain a large number of followers like some people who really go at it, but the most fulfilling part of it is engaging with people directly. I’m not a fan of auto tweets (but I do believe in scheduling). I always like to look at the sites of people I follow and that’s when I get real value out of the community. So it may take me longer to build a profile but I hope it’s more worthwhile in the long run.

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I agree that engaging with people directly is what makes blogging worth it – yes, it does take more effort, but it’s more satisfying too.

  34. Haha, I’m with you on social media. It is a lot of work and I just don’t want to be glued to my phone for the few hours I am at home and child free. I completely support those who want to or need to do it for their work. But since my blog is a hobby! I do auto-tweet a couple of times a day and when I publish a post. Otherwise I am trying to just tweet because I want to. I got a little too focussed on getting readers for the sake of it rather than just being me.

    The platform I like the least is Facebook. I’ve developed an Instagram habit in the last 6 months though I’ll confess! #MarvMondays

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Who wants to spend all their childfree time on their phone? Granted, I do spend a lot of free time blogging, but I actually enjoy the writing part.

  35. I can relate to this so much. I’ve just started blogging and I love writing but I hate the social media part. I constantly feel like I’m drowning in it. Not sure I’ll ever be that good at it. I’m not techno minded at all, so I find it all takes me so long. And I’ve just worked out the follow unfollow thing – so meaningless! Glad it’s not just me.

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      Just focus on the writing bit if that’s what you love! If you get too focused on social media and start hating blogging because of it, then you’ll end up losing a hobby you otherwise enjoyed.

  36. I can relate to this so much. I’ve just started blogging and I love writing but I hate the social media part. I constantly feel like I’m drowning in it. Not sure I’ll ever be that good at it. I’m not techno minded at all, so I find it all takes me so long. And I’ve just worked out the follow unfollow thing – so meaningless! Glad it’s not just me.

  37. Oh my God! thank goodness I have read this. It makes me feel so much better.
    I have a fairly low following but I always reassure myself that everyone that follows me, does so because they like my posts and enjoy my blog.
    I have joined a few pods and feel like the bloggers commenting sometimes have no interest in what I am saying and in all honestly I feel the same sometimes. But you write a comment for the sake of it.
    I don’t get it? Isn’t that a false following? Is it all about the reach?
    This is the first time I’ve seen a blogger mention it….. Thank you! 😘

    1. Squirmy Popple says: Reply

      I’m glad it made you feel better! It’s more important to have a small number of followers who really love your posts than a huge number of followers who never interact.

  38. I can completely relate to this post too. I’m really new to blogging and rather naively had no idea before starting about the social media involvement and commitment needed to it. Self promotion is just not in my nature, like many British people I suspect! I hate all these random people/companies that follow you just to unfollow you the next day because you haven’t returned the ‘favour’! I just want people to read and enjoy my blog! #marvmondays

  39. Hahaha bloody love this! I sort of hate insatgram too and wrote about that a few months ago! I have more of a love hate relationship with it now… I used to hate it full stop but i’m starting to get into it. I hate how long scheduling takes and how long INTERACTING takes… but like you say it’s so important. And often I do just give up to read an actual book. So much better. Read Pride and Prejudice recently…. ! Great post xx #ablogginggoodtime

  40. I sense a to be continued post on Instagram coming. #MarvMondays

  41. Yep, yep, yep – this totally resonates with me. Thanks for letting me know it’s not just me. xx #fortheloveofBLG

  42. I love how honest you are. I can totally understand why you would not want to look at Twitter after you have spent all day on Twitter. It’s funny because I work in digital marketing so planning the overall digital strategy for brands and it feels like I should know how to do this with my blog but it’s a whole different beast! You make some really good points here, and going to say this again but I love how honest this is. Thanks so much for sharing with #stayclassymama!

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