Authentically Human! Not Written by AI!
All Content Copyright © Michael Chesley Johnson AIS PSA MPAC

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Does Social Media Work?

In  my last post, I wrote about keeping a mailing list.  Now let's talk about social media.

Social media fills in those awkward moments when the conversation stops while you're waiting for your waiter to arrive with the pad thai.  You can scroll for the latest reviews of the restaurant's service.  But social media can also be a useful tool for reaching out to collectors and students, both potential and actualized—so long as you don't get sucked into the time sink.

I minimize my time on social media, preferring to automate my activity.  I've used both Hootsuite and Buffer, but I prefer Buffer.  It has a more seamless way of allowing one to grab an image from a web page and schedule a post about it.  The free version of Buffer—which I use—allows me to schedule up to ten posts per social media account for up to three accounts.  In my case, this is Twitter, Instagram and my Facebook studio page.  When my buffer is "empty," I make a cup of Scottish breakfast tea, sit down at my computer, and spend maybe thirty minutes pulling images of paintings off my web site and scheduling posts about them.

The scheduling is very flexible.  I have my posts scheduled to occur about twice a week at different times of day.  Once my "buffer" is empty again, I get an email about it, and so I sit down with some tea and do more posting again.

Thirty minutes a week or so.  Not bad.  But then there's followup.  Once or twice a day, I go to Instagram and Facebook to see how many "likes" I've received and to answer any comments that might have been made.  Sometimes, I feel like a rat pushing a lever for pellets; I get just enough "likes" to keep me online, posting and checking.  Comments are usually "Nice work" or something to that effect.  I don't answer these, but if someone makes a more elaborate remark or asks me a question, I do answer.

Does any of this work?  Some artists have great success with social media.

In my next post, I'll write about business cards and other physical marketing materials.

By the way,  I highly recommend you read the book, Digital Minimalism.