Can a social media vacay ruin your online presence?

You know what they say about a reputation. It takes a lifetime to build and only a minute to destroy. I kind of feel the same way about social media.

The last three weeks, I've been crazy busy. Personally and professionally, I've been burning the wick at both ends. I plowed through it all and met my obligations, but my tweeting, blogging, and Facebook page have suffered. As my social media channels got a little dusty, people said buh-bye.

When I wrote my post last week, I only got two comments (I love you Vanessa and Jeanie!). I haven't gotten that few comments in a long time. My engagement on my Facebook page has plummeted and my retweets are non-existent. I'm back where I was three years ago!

But, I'll persevere.

As I've always known, succeeding in social media takes a constant presence. When you fall by the wayside, so does the community you've worked so hard to nurture. In reality, I did post to Facebook, I tweeted, and I read other people's blogs, but I wasn't able to put the time into engagement. That's the sweet spot. That's what makes the difference.

The truth is, life catches up to all of us. Work, family, unexpected problems and obligations get the better of everyone. The answer isn't to quit, though. The only solution is to start again and rededicate yourself to your online presence.

So, here it is. My second post since I've returned from my social media vacay. Hello? Is anyone out there?

25 comments:

  1. I had the same thing happen when I was in that three-week-window of move to Austin, start a new job, and figure out everything else. My social stats dropped. I didn't tweet as often. I'm now getting back into reading more blogs (I'm sorry I didn't make it to last week's post; it kept looking at me in my inbox, and I just...lost track of it I guess.) and commenting on them. I've decided the whole thing is a cycle. Sometimes, we can be fully engaged. Other times, we need to take a break from that engagement in order to engage with and focus on other things.

    Completely unrelated note: I finally - finally - started work on the drawing for the Locali contest. :)

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  2. Awwww, I'm here for ya baby..........:). Coincidentally, I'm going thru some of the same challenges. It has been hard for me to keep up w/ my community.

    As much as you know it can't be an entirely tit for tat endeavor, there is still a certain amount of reciprocity required to have an 'active' community unless you are @TheBloggess 
     who gets 5,000 responses whether she responds or not. I want to be her when I grow up BTW......

    We know where to find you; you know where to find us. Hang in there.....

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  3. Hey Erin,

    There's the "I gotta take a break from this uber-connectedness" vacay and the "oh my gosh, my life needs me and I have other demands on my time" vacay, huh? Your move, new job, and life reorg is definately the latter.

    Don't be silly for not visiting, though. We all get busy and need to focus. I'm good sometimes and bad at others. I really need to get a better system in place for visiting other blogs, too.

    Good luck with the contest! I know you'll be the best entry they receive!

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  4. I always RESPOND, even when I'm on a SM vacay. Blog comments, tweets, FB comments. It's just the self-directed engagement that suffers. The reaching out. I think that's where it falls apart.

    I do know where to find you and I'll head over today. I'm back on the wagon, baby! ;-) 

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  5. If you develop a good system, you'll have to share it with me. Mine has no rhyme or reason - at least not on the surface.

    I hope so! I think you'll like it. So will @socialmediadds .

    That's a good point about vacations, too. There are different kinds.

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  6. Amber...great post and so true. And BTW thanks for sending me a tweet today. Of course, you receive a lot of great interaction/comments on your blog. I get traffic, but not a lot of comments. Just in late February I "reset" our business blog. I don't post every day, but try to write to keep our clients informed. Here is a link to the post I wrote about "resetting" our business blog. http://blog.webconsuls.com/2012/02/pushing-reset-button.html

    Also...I am going to add you to my personal blog's blogroll. That way I will remember to read you, even if I am not tweeting throughout the day!  You can see it here http://judysoped.blogspot.com/

    Judy 

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  7. If you aren't current, you may as well not exist. LOVE IT! So true, Judy.

    Thanks for the blogroll add. You're a doll and a half ;-)

    Hope to see you at the next West Coast Blogworld!

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  8. I'm stil here for you, Amber!

    The way I look at it, social media is not my "real" job and blogging has always been a hobby of mine. I try not to get down on myself if I don't post as often, but I also fell in the same boat of being completely overwhelmed with work and home stuff that I had to turn it all off. I figure I had to prioritize my activity sometimes and if that means taking a little break and coming back, then that's okay.

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  9.  Yeah, what you said!

    Seriously, though, thanks for the comment, Krista. We're always hardest on ourselves, huh? I mean, it's either write a post or have my life fall apart. It was just that kind of crazy, busy month. Everything happened at once.

    Thanks for stopping by, my favorite person in pink! ;-)

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  10. Oh my goodness @AmberAvines I feel AWFUL...you are one of the most supportive online friends out there and I, too, got immersed in life and neglected many of my friends.  I haven't developed a regular pattern now that my office is open and I am there overseeing everything for many hours a week.  I'm hoping that once a pattern is established, I can return to my friend's homes here.  Meanwhile, I am so glad that Erin Feldman mentioned me in her comment because it sort of woke me up.  I completely agree with your assessment Amber...I have let Social Media DDS go dormant for a bit while I work on Park Ridge DDS and it really shows...it's especially noticeable because my readership was pretty much just a loyal following so, when I stop writing, no one will show up! ;-)  I don't know that stepping momentarily away will ruin your online presence though...I'd like to think that once you have established a loyal community and you step away, they will happily return when you return.  Just look here...you've already gotten 9 comments!  You are loved!!
    xoxo
    Claudia

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  11.  Thanks for giving me a nudge here Erin Feldman by mentioning me...I appreciate it and I appreciate you!!
    xoxo
    Claudia

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  12. You're welcome. I didn't mean to nudge. I simply was sharing some good news about the teensy-weensy bit of progress I've made with the drawing. Some people (cough, cough) mentioned how they'd like to go to Los Angeles if my drawing were to win and I were to go to the city... :-D

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  13. Hello I'm here. Sometimes life just gets in the way, Good to know others have the same problem.

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  14.  Hello, my lovely! Opening a new office is a perfect example of life getting the better of you and taking you away from the web. I hope you noticed my "theme song" post was inspired by you, though! ;-)

    Busy or not, you'll always be my favorite dentist. Thanks so much for stopping by. I know how crazy busy you've been. Good luck with all the exciting changes, Claudia!

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  15. Hello, Deb! Yeah, some days it's just easier to keep up and sometimes life is just too complicated and hectic to keep your head above water---much less blog and actively tweet!

    Thanks so much for stopping by! It's always appreciated to get a friendly hello ;-)

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  16. P.S. Do not even feel bad, you silly goose. We all get busy! That's just a fact of life. You don't owe me a single thing. Ever ;-)

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  17. Snoring Dog StudioApril 15, 2012 at 7:00 AM

    I'm still here, Amber! But, barely. For the last few weeks I've been more absent than normal. I hate worrying about losing readers, though. I'm hoping that my readers will understand that we all need a break now and then. Of course, when it's your business, as it is yours, Amber, it is worrisome. But people return and new people show up. It's all good.

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  18. Hello...is this thing on?
    Amber, sweet Amber, we all have to take a break from time to time. I just did last week and have a feeling that come summer, I'll be doing it again. Life does indeed catch up to us and that's ok. My theory is that if your original engagement was strong enough (as yours is, without a doubt), the climb back up will be a short one. 

    It does not take long to regain your traction, especially when you have the right tools for the job: sincerity, a gift for gab, great writing chops, and a loyal fan base! 

    Glad you're back and I'm always around - you just might not see me. ;)

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  19. Hi Jean!

    There's just no way around it, is there? Life just gets us some times!

    More than anything, it's disruptive to the momentum we work so hard to get. But, just like the train that has to slow down at the station, it gets moving again when it leaves the gate!

    Thanks so much for stopping by, Jean!

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  20. Thanks for the sweet comment, Erica! I love your four tools. I may have to use that in a blog post! ;-)

    This vacay wasn't planned or desired. it just happened when I found that I didn't have enough time in the day. I think it was the same as your "I'm always around, you just might not see me" thing. Actually, that's EXACTLY what it was!

    Thanks for taking the time to say hello, Erica!

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  21. "Out of sight...out of mind."  It is amazing if people are no longer in your "sandbox" how quickly they forget, how much they enjoyed being in there with you and learning from you!
    As a Business Strategist, I have found this to be oh so true!
    Eileen Strong
    Powerful Results.....with Strong Incentives

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  22. Hi Eileen,

    Yep, this can be very true. I guess the lesson is we always need to make time for the sandbox, eh? ;-)

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  23. Yes, I think sometimes if we are not engaging our online presence can suffer. But if you had a strong presence prior to the break, I think you will bounce back quicker (just look how many comments you have to this post ;-)

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  24. Next, I demand a post on WHY social media audiences are so fickle! Do people 

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  25. I've been blogging for over a decade and I still get giddy when I get *one* comment! I still haven't figured out what I am doing wrong, especially since I'm so good at engaging on twitter (despite what Klout says LOL!).

    I expect people to have a life, so take a vaycay whenever you need one. Your true believers will stick around.

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