Social media exhaustion

I take my first sip of fresh-brewed coffee and sit down in front of my computer for my 15 minutes of morning social media updating.
Blog reader. Let’s see what happened over the weekend … 328 new relevant articles. Where to even begin? I don’t.
On to Blogger. Need to finish an article, but when I add a photograph, all the spacing between paragraphs goes wacky, like soldiers breaking ranks. Damn. How many times have I formatted this thing?
Check Twitter. Ten new followers. Cool. Wait … nine of the avatars are people offering to help me get rich quick. Block … block … ummm … why are these folks still showing up on my list? Dreaded Twitter “whale of death” plops itself down in the middle of my screen. Too much traffic. Twitter down for the count.
Linked-in … 398 new discussions on the In eMarketing Forum. I can’t begin to wade through the snake oil to see if something meaningful is hiding in there.

Forget it. Go to email. 112 messages overnight. Quick scan shows:

Twelve e-newsletters
Eleven free social media webinars
Ten spammers
Nine blog comments to be moderated
Seven tweet-ups
Six Google alerts
Five new Linked-In requests
Four industry alerts
Three Facebook friend requests
Two news alerts
… and a partridge in a pear tree.

Social media has hijacked my morning. This new “free” channel is soaking up something more precious than money – time. I feel it sucking me under.

Some pundits claim you can manage a social media lifestyle in 15-30 minutes a day, but I don’t know how you can effectively participate in even a modest global conversation in that timeframe.

Help! How are you dealing with the increasing time requirements of social media? What are you doing to discipline yourself while providing meaningful engagement?

Tomorrow: A cure for social media exhaustion — digital de-tox?

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  • Jim LeBlanc

    This hits home. But I don't have any answers. Too much to keep up with. Have you seen these charts that list all of the hundreds of SM applications? What about ways to MANAGE IT???

  • Laura

    In agreement with that. As budgets are constrained, everyone is communicating as much as they can online as it is ‘free’ and because it is free it is sent in massive quantity, not so much quality! Maybe people should think more like they are sending a telegram – when you are paying per word you start thinking more about what each word will communicate! But then I think a lot of marketers think – well if you throw enough crap some of it will stick, which is quite annoying as there is so much irrelevant messaging to the wrong people. By the end of the recession the last solution we’ll be offering clients is email blasts, do you agree?

  • MARK W. SCHAEFER

    I feel like I am the target of all that crap sometimes, Laura! Part of the exhaustion — moving through the haystack to find the needle!

  • Cheryl Elizaga

    I feel just as overwhelmed and in despair as you sound in this blog, Mark! I really don't know what to say in terms of advice, because I'm still learning how to deal with it. I feel all this computer time is overheating my Mac and ruining my eyes! I say, step away from the screen and spend as much time in the sun as you are on the computer. This is a lot healthier for our bodies and will give you the energy you need to respond to all these blog comments/mentions/DMs/e-mails, what have you.

    Speaking of, I should run outside right now…I've been inside all day!

  • MARK W. SCHAEFER

    Well, I wouldn't say I'm in despair, but it certainly makes for a challenge. I'm glad you're taking care of yourself. I try to spend as much time as I can outside, too. I need a weekedn of digital de-tox about very 2-3 months! Hang in there!

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