Today I return to practical advice that local nonprofits can apply to their public relations practices. My J452 professor shared with me a helpful link on how to maximize your social media use. The information in the link is especially applicable to Facebook and Twitter, the two most frequently used social media websites among both the nonprofits I’ve blogged about and the general population.
First, they recommend prioritizing your work week to avoid distractions. According to Reuters, “[t]he average information worker…loses 2.1 hours of productivity every day to interruptions and distractions…” If that seems remarkably high, I’ve sometimes lost even more hours to Facebook and YouTube that I could’ve spent studying. Planning what to do during your work period can definitely be a lifesaver!
Their next tip is a little weirder. While it is definitely important to figure out what time of day you’re most productive (for me it’s usually at night), they also link to an interesting infograph that discusses the best times to post on Facebook and Twitter. Here are a few of their tips (they have an interesting methodology):
- The best time to tweet is 5PM ET
- 1 to 4 tweets per hour is ideal
- The best days to tweet are midweek and on the weekends
- The best day to share on Facebook is Saturday
- The best time to share on Facebook is Noon ET
They also discourage multi-tasking, which is definitely a good idea. Multiple sources have effectively argued that multi-tasking is a myth. When you use social media, avoid e-mail, instant messaging, multiple windows/tabs (guilty as charged), and other distractions that keep you from doing one thing well – social media.
Finally, they provide a list of internet tools to maximize your time dedicated to social media. They organize this based on three categories: “curation tools to quickly gather and share content;” “social aggregators and management tools to follow and engage on multiple platforms;” and “social bookmarks to effectively organize and store websites.” For the latter category, I want to note that StumbleUpon and Reddit are extremely popular among my peers. Delicious is a website my J452 professor uses.
To comment on trends I’ve already noticed in local nonprofits, I also feel it’s important to focus your efforts in a couple of social media tools that work best for your organization. Almost everybody uses Facebook and Twitter, and these are by far the most important assets for any organization’s social media use. Whatever else you use depends on the needs of your nonprofit, but use sparingly.