“We are wasting too much time!”  This is the statement spoken far too often by salespeople and their managers when it comes to social media sites, especially Facebook, Linkedin and  Twitter.  Some people have realized that social media is indeed killing their sales motivation.

As a salesperson, you have to have a presence on key social media sites. It should be clear by now that it’s not much different than having a phone number — it’s essential.  So, it’s not that you should completely ignore these sites. The key is you need to be very controlled with regard to the amount of time  you spend on them.

So, can you do social media in 10 minutes a day?

Here’s what I’ve determined as the 10-minute plan to success with social media:

Facebook:  Spend 4 minutes per day cruising the daily updates with the goal being to make 2 – 3 comments.  Post every third day an update on your wall as to what you’re doing.  Review the “people you know” section every three days to find any or all people with whom you want to connect.  Finally, use your friend emails as a quick check to find others you may want to ask to be friends with. Finally, disengage the Facebook feature that sends you an email every time someone makes a comment on a post.  This can be a huge distraction and time sucker.

Linkedin:  Disengage group updates from coming to your mailbox except for the ones from the most important groups to which you belong.  Check Linkedin daily, not to leave messages, but only to quickly scan new items that may have been posted.  Maximum time — one minute.  Once a week, take 10 minutes to scan groups to which you belong. Definitely, you should belong to groups that fit your profession.  Look for one question you can answer and do so. Only answer those questions to which you can respond thoughtfully. Remember that Linkedin is not Facebook.  Think of Facebook as friends you associate with and Linkedin as the conference you’re in for business meetings.

Twitter:  Yes set up a Twitter account and use Hootsuite or some other tool to help you organize it.  Key is to follow key words. Keep in mind that 99.5 percent of tweets have nothing meaningful for you.  For instance my job is sales, so I follow the hashtags #sales and #salestips, as well as a few key associations.  That’s it. I don’t waste time just watching what pops up. I will tweet occasionally, but I do not spend an excessive amount of time out there.  No more than 5 minutes a day.

That’s it, 10 minutes per day.  Sure, you can spend more but then again, don’t you have more important things to do?  Don’t let social media kill your sales motivation.

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