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The 10 Tell-Tale Signs Of Social Burnout

Who’d have thought it – Facebook made it past the two year fad milestone, Twitter put ‘tweet’, ‘tweeps’ and twitterati’ on the map, and Google+ planted itself in the middle with a virtual beaming smile. If we add Bebo, LinkedIn, forums, blogs and Branch out to the growing following – I ask one question.

Has social media made us too socialable?



Before the days of social media (yes, there was a day, like the days before mobile phones and TV), we saved our social interactions for networking events, for coffee mornings, and those few daily phone calls.  Now, suddenly, every second is social interaction. We are permanently in the moment, on the go, plugging, chatting, appealing, complimenting, reviewing, advertising, collaborating and promoting; day in, day out, blah, blah, blah.

So, I ask another question.

How much ‘social’ is comfortable?

You may think this a bizarre question, but to sustain that ‘in the moment zing’ should social interactions be a bit more spaced out? Should we be spending time ‘building up to the social’, or should we just let it flow over us and sweep us along?

And could all this social media lead to social burnout?

The tell-tale signs of social burnout

You’ve hit the social wall – you can’t talk the talk any longer. Are your audience aware – Did Mark Zuckerberg co-create Facebook?? I say yessss.

So, the signs in downward spiral order:

  1. A lack of zest in your comments and tweets
  2. No innovative ideas
  3. Tired, worn-out phases
  4. A dull Facebook page
  5. Seriously uninventive blog posts
  6. Going back to the hard sell
  7. Begging for comments and likes
  8. A decrease in social activity
  9. Talking nonsense
  10. Getting your son, daughter, the next neighbour; anybody other than you to handle the activity

How to fix social burnout

While this could be a blog post all on it’s own, I’d hate to list the symptoms and offer no cure.

  1. Here’s a few tips to put you back in the social gamePlan your activity – Having a plan will give you something to follow and will stopped your posts drying up
  2. Use a strategy – Devise a strategy with aims and objectives to keep your momentum up
  3. Post when you’re in the mood and have something to say, not in a regimented style and for the sake of it
  4. Keep things fresh and update your page, background and theme often – If you are bored looking at the same design, then so are your fans and friends
  5. Look at other pages, sites, anywhere to gain inspiration and jot down your ideas – Integrate these ideas into your plan and drip-feed them to your audience to keep them engaged

Have you suffered from social burnout? What did you so to solve it?
Any more tips?

Christina is a complete geek, hence a perfect web + online marketing consultant. After ten years working with Premier Recruitment Group, LA Fitness, Monarch Airlines, Thomson Travel and a host of other companies, she now owns CG Online Marketing ( in Ireland and is an associate of the Ahain Group. She's qualified in most things online such as web server management, digital design, Google Analytics and SEO. Specialties: Social Media Marketing, SEO / PPC,Google analytics (qualified in GA IQ) Web trends + insights, Data segmentation and targeting, Customer Behavior analysis, Digital design, Writing, Ethical marketing Green marketing / Sustainable tourism and Hotel + travel online marketing

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  • lol, this is great fun, really well written and comes with a serious message, great post! As someone who now has to spend a lot of time online, I could agree more with your fix num 2. Having a strategy is the for me, the first step in ensuring the 10 signs of burnout don’t take hold 🙂

  • Hi Niall and thanks for your comments,nnSocial media is fun, so it makes sense to keep posts about it fun too. Something I’ve seen a great deal of of late is people losing the momentum after the initial jump into the social media world. It’s exciting to try something new, but when you become bored, or unsure, or even disappointed with the results, you can hit the wall. I’m sure commenters will have many pointers to kick-start a tired page, as an extention of my pointers above.

  • A lot of my Twitter stream is nonsense………uh oh!

  • I sometimes find I miss the best parts of a TV show as I’m tweeting about the last partu00a0…n You can definitely have too much of a good thing. Pace is everything, so I guess that’s where strategy (your #2 cure above) comes in.u00a0NIce one Christina 🙂

  • I have to admit I love social media and while I agree that keeping up face to face contact with friends over those coffee mornings is still really important, I’m finding I am making new and v good friends thru social media that I then go on to meet up with in person.nHave to admit though, bloggers block does hit in very occasionally and I’ve struggled a bit this summer, posting twice or 3 times a week compared to my normal 4 times but that’s just been with the kids off.nBut yes, having a strategy is important, my strategy for my summer posts was to deal with interiors related topics from A-Z rather than trying to keep up with my usual posts and trying to think of new topics and it kept me sane!nGreat post Christina

  • O’dear Gianni. It is wise to have a ‘real’ conversation and natter with online buddies. Shows your human side. But does the bulk of your tweets support your business aims? Do they convert? Are you monitoring and measuring?

  • Thank you Helen, Real-time comms does seem to have that effect. What happened to those days when we would enjoy, savour and the write or chat about? lol nnPace and targets….everything has an end result. Be fin, be spontaneous, but be targeted. My wise words of the day..haha

  • I’ve been on Facebook since 2007 and I find it ebbs and flows.u00a0 Usually during school holidays, August specially, for the last 2 years on Facebook has been quieter than any other month on my wall.u00a0 It’s also the month when I really feel like “sod it, I can’t be bothered with it all”.u00a0 I know that when the kids go back to school in September and the normal routine settles back in I’ll get my mojo back.nnDespite the advice to keep at it from many experts I think when something gets to that point it is time to step back and take a break, even if only for a week, so that you come back with fresh eyes and hopefully renewed vigour.

  • Like me Lorna… ; 0 ) nI second your comment, you can make some excellent friends on social media channels. nnGlad to hear that you are proof that strategy works….keeping you sane is a reason to use one for sure. So many good reasons, pity businesses are not using them….but, arhh well, we all find our way eventually.u00a0 Topics are good. I’ve written topic lists for the year for some clients. Trending topics and current events are also great to slot in there.nnThanks for your comments!

  • I suggest inviting guest writers on your blog. They can fill the gap and give you some breathing space while you are dealing with blog burn outu00a0 and often they can inject a new lease of life into your blog and maybe help shift your writers block.

  • O’ absolutely….and give a different angle and voice.

  • Hi Mairead,nnIt does doesn’t it and mood makes a difference too (point 3). I wonder if businesses are scared to take that logical step back ?? Its best in the long run.nnHere’s to your ‘mojo’!

  • Anonymous

    As a cure I’d add go offline for a bit. u00a0Take a walk or go do something totally non work related for a bit. u00a0If you can empty your mind of work you’ll often find that the ideas start flowing again.

  • Similar vein to Mairead’s comment of ‘time to step back and take a break’. Too much of anyting in one go isn’t a good thing – everything in moderation!nnThanks for adding!

  • I like the formula, plan, speak when you have something to say, don’t force. Like proper social reaction I guess. I am always more comfortable with social media the more truly sociable the interaction is. Thanks for some really useful thoughts. Brian

  • Anonymous

    Oh Christina.. I absolutely agree with everything you have the post by the way!nnI think social burnout has very similar symptoms to ..”New user on Social Media” or “No idea where to start/how to useu00a0social media”. nnYour tips to put you back in the Social GamePlanu00a0will offer a helpful solution to all these aliments!nnI’m not too proud to admitu00a0that I suffered from these problems myself once, but a plan, strategy and direction helped me get back on track. nnAnd the great thing is this advice can be used to jazz up your social media activity regardless of what kind of business you are in! Sometimes a little “thinking outside the box” is needed, but it is possible.nnMy added tip would be if you are really stuck or don’t know how (or maybe why) you should implement these tips then ask for some help..Its amazing what a fresh set of eyes or a sounding board can help you achieve.nn

  • Leslie

    The irony of living the Social life is that you are sitting at a table tweeting strangers and ignoring the people at your table, that have real skin. Balance, anyone?

  • Debbie Bruce

    Very relevant topic, great article.u00a0 I do think social media is here to stay, but agree that people are becoming exhausted with the maintenance.u00a0 Innovation and fresh ideas are always the answer to keeping the public’s interest, despite the platform.u00a0 Thanks for the tips.u00a0

  • Anonymous

    Great post Christina. u00a0I agree that strategy and objectives are vital. u00a0I also think you’ve got to be realistic as to what you can and can’t achieve. u00a0If you an only afford 30 minutes a day on Social sites, you better have a plan on how you are going to invest those 30 minutes.

  • Hi Android,nnCheers. I think we all have at times…we really push ourselves to write and at times, doesn’t comes to mind. Finding inspiration in the things you most passonate about and giving them a business/marketing/tech twist will enrich them. Try it!nnGlad you enjoyed.

  • Excellent Frank! Being efficient online is definately important. Time can run away with you. Be strict with your time…because time is money.

  • Hi there,nThe mix of online and offline is ideal. I don’t think we should lock ourselves up in our houses and just communicate via the internet; we should get out and about and network in the real world too. Use the strengths of each to our advantage.nnThanks for commenting. Very interesting to note what works for businesses.

  • You’re welcome Debbie.nThe nature of the game is ‘keep it fresh’ and these days we have to constantly think and innovate. Sometimes you do want to switch off…..but thats a good thing. Do whats right for you and that works.nEach platform will change over time and new apps etc will come into play which will dictate many ideas for us.

  • Great line Leslie,nFrom my studies of behaviours, the mindset is that chatting to people online allows you to be more open and friendy. Face to face chats require more effort…I know that sounds wierd, but online is ‘easier’ in a sense to communicate. Your voice and looks are not barriors…and I know that that sounds awful, but we do make judgement calls based on looks – its one of the resons that most don’t like sending a photo with a CV or making a video CV. Less barriers. nArhh, my thought anyway ; 0 )nnNice insight, thought-provoking and true – thanks!

  • Hi Brian,nnI guess its logical. But logic can escape us because social media is real time. We just find ourselves typing for the sake of it….to be part of it.nnBe inspired, then type. Plan a brilliant campaign, then type a message and share with this in mind. And always keep breathing!! lolnn’The only pressure, is the pressure you place on yourself.’nnGlad the blog post is of use to you. My job is doneu00a0 ; 0 )

  • I spent the majority of 2009-2010 actually signing up and completing profiles on social media and social networking sites, platforms and forums. God was it tiring. So it’s been curtailed down to a chosen few, mostly based on what is being used here in Ireland.nnArrg, I have a total block these days, blogging, tweeting FB – am allergic, only nip in now and then to read fantastic posts like this one. Perhaps like some of the others, it’s summer related :-/nnThanks Tina, great revelations and great tips to counteract. Strategy is key, or at least a planner for blogs and possible scheduling tweets, but easier said sometimes!nnGreat post – loved it! Thank you.

  • Wonderful comment Breda! nnNew users do have similar issues and many are floundering because (from my research) they keep giving the responsibility to their teen children or friend down the road. Social media is a marketing tool. No doubt about it. So, the person or people managing it must understand how to market…in a social way. Thats not natural for some….its a mindest and a learning experience. nnHopefully my tips will give a bit of direction, there’s plenty of info out their from those in the trade that you an learn.nnI’ve found that because social media is easy to set up and free, they wonder why they need to pay someone to manage it or give direction. Why spend money when they can type away themselves? We all need a bit of help at times with areas that we are unsure of. The return on investment is higher, because those who have studied it know all the tricks and techniques.nnThanks so much for your comment, and the support. You’re proof that a plan and strategy works….!

  • Arhhh, you have a knack for it Elaine, don’t be so modest!nnThere are certainly a surplus of options out there. Each one you feel you have to sign up for because it could be the next Facebook or Twitter….but current stats and surveys will always highlight the best of the bunch and which people personally/businesses prefer. These are the one to condense down to, because they work for your setup. When I customise strategies, I actually say, ‘this platform and this platform we’ll run with, the others, we drop.’ The shocked faces are a picture……! You use what works for your service and geographical location, not what doesn’t. Simple logic!nnIt’s startegy all the way girl!!!!nnThanks for your honest and lovely words.

  • Hi Christina – brilliant post. I’m glad you also included strategies on how to overcome burnout. Do you think that having so many social media channels to manage contributes to the overwhelm?

  • Actually – there is a Freudian typo there Tina – startegy!! A new word – a strategy to get started 🙂 love it!!

  • What would I do without teacher Elaine! Fail English I reckon……lol

  • Hi Ivana,nnYes indeed-d! Its overwealming for businesses with no prior experience or knowledge of current stats and usage. We are all inundated with promo messages, urging us to sign up to the new ‘big’ thing. It’s hard for businesses, because they have to try and predict or just sign up to everything in the hope something takes off. But this is inefficient and time-consuming. Most forget what they’ve signed up to, let alone passwords. And then when should they follow up? What activity should they do? When do they fit it in? nnA strategy and clear plan will ease the stresses and help businesses focus. They can experiment, but measure it too.nnThanks for commenting!

  • I love your suggested burnout fixes. I’ve had to implement #3 in my own writing and posting because there have been some days when I just couldn’t muster up the energy to organize and share my ideas. I’ve concluded that it’s due to the pressure to update every single day so you don’t lose your audience.

  • I agree Susan. Its best to leave it a day, then resume or if you have a few ideas one day, spread them across the week.

  • A common way of being able to spot social media burn out is when you see someone not keeping up with their linkedin, facebook, twitter etc!… so often people spread themselves way too thinly.. Make sure you have a balance and also that these channels are all integrated.

  • This was such a fun crowd sourced post to follow as the comments came in Sian. Well done in highlighting the amazing benefits of being part of this community 🙂 When I said “them” of course I meant the great Niall Devitt 🙂

  • Hi Sian”Community” is a recurring theme for the writers, and like the other writers, I didn’t forsee this benefit when I first started to write here. I didn’t make a contribution in time for your post here, but would add that I am currently writing a series on articles on blogging for Accountancy Ireland, (the journal for Chartered Accountants Ireland), as a direct result of another post on here. The editor was searching for a particular type of content and found it in a post of mine on here, (this sites ranks well :).
    An interesting read, thanks Sian,~Helen

  • Thanks Helen – community certainly is key here I think. We all learn from each other and help each other. And have made good friends too.

  • Thanks Elaine – it was fun to follow wasn’t it. I wish I could have kept it going for longer but hopefully those that missed out will add in the comments anyhow

  • Hi Sian, thanks for putting this post together and managing the TYB ship in my absence. For me, TYB is proof that working together is better than working alone. The members that benefit the most are also those who put the most in. I think it’s fair to say that many of us have now made some great friends too 🙂  

  • Ditto On Niall’s Comments. Community takes the ” Rat ” out of the Ratrace and makes doing business amuch healthier sport

  • Christina Giliberti

    Wow, there’s plenty of excellent reasons above to join TYB and interestingly, many are about the team as opposed to posts.

  • I’m sorry that My computer failed and I couldn’t participate. Loved the article and the insights. Love the community spirit that has grown from among the writers. It keeps you going, doesn’t it?

  • Janine Gilmour

    Nice and concise – tools I can definitely use! Thanks Stacy.

  • Elish Bul-Godley

    super resource – bookmarked – thanks for that!

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