Guest Blog by Gill Bruce, GB-Digital
It’s been almost three years now since I chose not to return after maternity leave to my job at a local marketing agency. My eldest child was starting school and it felt like the right time to break away and form shorter working days that would benefit me and my newly-expanded family.
I see a lot of ads on social media these days, appealing to mums in particular to ‘quit the rat race’ and ‘work from home’; with suggestions for all types of self-led positions, from virtual assistants and product sales for companies like Younique and Arbonne, to courses that will enable you to become a social media manager. This is basically what I do now for my living and a couple of years into freelance social media management, I wanted to tell you about the pros and cons of my job, so that you with hopefully get a balanced view for a change!
* You can (do some of the) work whenever you want to.
Thanks to scheduling apps such as Buffer or Hootsuite, it is easy enough to plan a week or two’s worth of scheduled content and simply set a timer for the posts to go out. By doing this, you can be sure that a client has a steady stream of content. It can be easy to get organised and fit work into childcare days (definitely get childcare – it’s too tiring to work effectively when baby sleeps and there is relaxation to be had. Trust me on this one!).
* There’s always something new to try and something to learn
Whilst the ever-changing features of social media channels can be tough to keep up with you’ll always have something new to try. You will also build up confidence in trying out apps for making video and designing graphics – although I get professionals to make a lot of my graphics because design is definitely not my strongest point!
* You’ll find your digital tribe
It didn’t take long before I ended up in a chat group with some fellow social media managers from across the world. We swap tips, critique each other’s work and have a good moan when the going gets tough. I’ll be meeting up with a few of my gang in September at a conference, which I’m really looking forward to.
* Not everything can be scheduled if you do things properly
Whist I see many social media manager adverts talking about how you can ‘schedule everything’, that’s simply not true. The posts that I create are only half of the story. Each client requires regular networking, so that they are liking, commenting and interacting with the people that matter most to them. It’s worth considering how this will be managed on a regular basis, as trying to do this when young kids are around is unlikely to work.
* Creativity and tiredness don’t mix!
If you’re a new parent, or your kids (like mine) say no to sleep, it can be a drain on your creativity. I find it quite stressful to worry about fulfilling my client work if I’ve not had enough sleep. I get around this by minimising my networking time to short, sharp bursts. Staying on top of scheduling definitely helps here!
So there you have it! If you have any questions or want to know more about how I work, just drop me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be happy to chat to you