Become a social media master and build a following that wants what you’re offering.

I don’t pretend to be an expert. But I used to.

I have loathed writing on this topic mainly because it’s the one topic everyone has hounded me about, and yet the topic that’s made me feel like a fraud. I tend to shy away from things my heart is not into. Social media was a big part of my online career initially, but it eventually became so irrelevant. Relationships may start on Facebook, or Instagram or Twitter, but they certainly don’t have to remain there. I’m more interested in the people than the ‘show’ and Facebook, to me, had become one giant competitive reality show. I wasn’t interested in that, and I’ve found it hard to maintain my integrity while under a spotlight. I don’t feel like I am better than anyone else on this topic, nor the subject matter expert- I just know some shortcuts and have an overall understanding of marketing. 

Here’s the thing though… the top ‘experts’ and ‘guru’s’ are all full of shit. At some point in their career they, too are faced with a crossroad. They have to decide to either deceive their followers because it’s what they want, or realign and change. Changing is risky… It’s unpredictable and it exposes you for who you really are. Many don’t change their message, or their appearance, or even themselves. They figure out what works and they keep playing that tune, over and over and over until people get sick of that message and them all together.

There was a time when I was popular. All the ‘cool kids’ followed me and I was in their inner circle- so long as I played by their rules. For example, “Never post about religion or politics or anything controversial.” “Do not be who you really are, that’s a bit too edgy for most people.” “Only post things of value- your Facebook wall should resemble a blog full of information people want. People stop by to ‘get something from you’.” At first I was ok with this. I was getting real results, and fast. I had lots of engagement, and people seemed to hang on every word I said. The interesting thing is, even my edgy posts were popular, but as I began to side-step outside the lines of what was ‘appropriate’, less and less people liked what I had to say, until it felt like I was alone in an empty room, wondering- if anyone ever really knew me. It was only then did I realize how much value I placed on everyone else’s opinions of me. Facebook was none other than a place of judgement. For people to vote you in or out on a daily basis. If they liked what you had to say, you were a hero- an authority on the topic of ‘social media’, ‘leadership’ or ‘network marketing’. You became this person everyone wanted to learn from… except, the truth in it all was, being yourself never yielded results. Being fake did.

Facebook is for fakers, and I wasn’t, anymore.

I wasn’t comfortable selling the lie. The fact is, you can make huge waves in social media if you really want to- but at the cost of what you really stand for. Marketing is all about appealing to your audience and delivering a message THEY want to hear. It really has nothing to do with what you want, or what you want to say, it’s not about you at all. It’s about surveying who is watching you and giving them what they appeal to. The moment you step out of the light of where they’d like you to stand, they start throwing tomatoes…until you’re boo’d off stage and called, ‘a has been’.

I hated the pressure. It felt like politics to me. Everyone making politically correct moves with politically correct smiles on their faces and I saw right through it all. The whole idea of Facebook, in the grand scheme of things… is a sad reflection of what society has become.

Unless.. you can sell yourself, as you are, to people who are looking for someone just like you to follow.

And here’s the caveat….

You can create a brand, a business, a following around who you actually are- but it’ll take some work to find, and collect the friends who you’re in alignment with. Whatever your interests are, find others with similar interests. It is not an overnight success mission. It takes time, just like everything else. And while you can buy followers, you can buy likes and comments, you can buy engagement, you can sell yourself by buying others- but at the end of the day, you’re left with you and your brand and if you’re not making a difference in the world you’re selling yourself short at best and failing at worst. Failing to make a difference. Failing to care about the real people, just like you, who are in desperate need of guidance you possess right now. The best piece of advice I can give you, is to escape the ‘high school popularity contest’ of who has the most followers and likes and focus on how you can change lives, one at a time- and when you shift your focus to that, the people will come and they will be grateful for YOU, and not the falsely branded version of you, you sold yourself out to be.

Of course, if you’re insecure, have self-worth issues, or NEED to have social media engagement to feel like you matter in the online world, go to https://hublaa.me/ and sign up for their VIP membership. They will deliver as many likes as you wish, automatically to every post on your profile and/or fan page. It’s ‘real’ geo-targeted traffic that indirectly produces results because it creates a sense of ‘wow, look at all the likes she has, she must be someone smart’.. Which provides some sort of false credibility, that matters to people too afraid of producing actual results.

I prefer paying for ads on Facebook, personally. Better, higher quality results- and the ability to build a REAL list of people who want what you’re selling.

You can take the shortcuts in social media if you wish, but the only person you’re cheating is yourself. To build a long-lasting, fruitful business, it takes the careful selecting of followers that align with the message you’re presenting. (Or business offer) 😉

With that being said.. Being real is, ‘in’.

“You’ll learn, as you get older, that rules are made to be broken. Be bold enough to live life on your terms, and never, ever apologize for it. Go against the grain, refuse to conform, take the road less traveled instead of the well-beaten path. Laugh in the face of adversity, and leap before you look. Dance as though EVERYBODY is watching. March to the beat of your own drummer. And stubbornly refuse to fit in.” Mandy Hale, The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass