Entrepreneurs, bloggers and executives are often getting burnt out from being always on. That’s especially an issue with social media, taking its addictive nature and availability 24/7 on our phones. The fact that women (and some men too!) tend to compare themselves with others on social platforms, especially Instagram, adds to the equation–and the stress. So we now have burnout, lowered self-esteem and in some cases, even triggers of depression.
It’s hard to find balance, so the best solution is taking the popular social media break.
What many people don’t know, is that at a time when there’s so much competition on Instagram and an algorithm that gets their data from how people interact with your posts, taking a break from your business account can actually hurt your brand’s awareness and profitability. Ugh.
But worry no more: luckily, there are ways around it.
So here’s how you can take a social media break without hurting your business:
1. PLAN YOUR CONTENT AHEAD
The Instagram algorithm gets its data from how people interact with your posts. Without posts, people won’t have anything to interact with and won’t be able to signal to the algorithm that they care and want to see your content. So taking a break in posting, you guessed it- it may hurt your engagement a good bit.
Luckily there are wonderful Instagram partner apps that allow any business account to schedule and auto-publish posts for free! My favorites are Later and Planoly, which you can download on the app store.
So get the app of your choice, create and schedule enough posts for the time you will be gone. Another tip: you can reuse some of your posts that performed well in the past, so you have less to create.
2. MANAGE EXPECTATIONS
If you need to be on your phone answering questions and comments, that defeats the whole purpose of the break, whether you’re burnout or just want to take vacations. So you have two ways to go here:
You can communicate you’ll be away and let your followers know you’ll get back to them upon your return at a certain date. If you choose that route, make sure you add this info to a few of the posts you will schedule and also your Instagram bio. If you have a newsletter list, you should also send a pre break newsletter with interesting content and a note letting people know you will be gone.
Your second option here, and I recommend that for those of you who get a good amount of orders or business enquires through social media, is to spend a little extra budget and hire a temporary community manager.
3. PREPARE TO AVOID FUTURE BURNOUTS
After you make your plan for your time away, I highly recommend you prepare for the next time it happens, because it will happen again unless you make a few changes.
First, learn to recognize your triggers. It may be that you start using the Instagram more and more when you’re feeling overwhelmed. For others it could be that it takes them way too long to even create one post or story. Try to observe what it is to you, write it down and keep yourself on check.
Then, remember it’s not personal! The reason you didn’t get many likes on that post has most likely nothing to do with you, your photo and your caption. It has to do with how the algorithm works, how many accounts your followers are following (which means their feeds are a mess and they miss content they actually enjoy) and how many new accounts are joining Instagram everyday. It’s really not about you!
Finally, make sure you unfollow accounts that make you second guess yourself and your business. You have complete control of what content you consume, so exercise it! On that same note, follow some accounts that make you feel inspired, empowered and just make you laugh – whether it’s a goofy pet influencer or a meme account.
After you’re all set, delete the app from your phone and enjoy your break!
Manu Muraro, Founder of @yoursocialteam