We’re in this together

Every time we host a workshop, or a training day, or any sort of social-media event, the same thing happens.

At some point – sometimes right at the beginning, sometimes during the tea break, sometimes at the very end, just as we’re packing up our laptops – a person sidles over and admits – almost apologetically – that they “just sort of fell into social media”, and they’re not sure whether they’re doing it right.

Honestly, it happens every single time!

And you know what we reply? “Oh!” we say. “Don’t worry! Everyone’s in the same boat!”

And it’s true!

Imposter syndrome – because that’s what it is; that gnawing, unnerving feeling that you don’t possess the right letters after your name, or have the appropriate years of experience to be doing your job – is rife in the worthy causes space. It’s particularly prevalent in the social-media-for-worthy-causes space.

Because here’s the thing: very, very few charities or not-for-profits have the resources to employ a full-time, dedicated, social-media manager. Very few have the resources to employ a PART-TIME social-media manager. More often than not, the person handling the social media is a volunteer with a penchant for storytelling, or an office manager with a knack for creating conversation, or a designer able to create awesome infographics.

Ninety-nine percent of the time, the person in charge of a charity’s social media has no formal qualifications, no relevant experience, and very, very limited time at their disposal. We tell the person at the event, workshop or training day this, and then make our own small admission: we didn’t go to social-media school either.

None of us did! We don’t have qualifications in marketing, PR or social media. The majority of us are journalists, by profession (that’s where the storytelling comes in). Everything we know about social media we’ve learnt by immersing ourselves in the digital-marketing world – reading everything we can get our hands on, talking to everyone who’ll listen, listening to everyone who’ll talk. We’ve built our knowledge over years of trial and error. We make mistakes, but we learn from them, and then we share those learnings with everyone who needs them!

Why are we telling you this? Because we want you to know that you’re not the only one struggling with imposter syndrome! We want you to know that your colleagues all across the worthy-cause space are struggling with a lack of time, a lack of resources and an ENORMOUS feeling of being out of their depth with social media.

We want you to know that once upon a time, we were too! But together, we can change the world (and create the perfect Facebook Page)!

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