bloggers, Classroom, Education, Humor, Middle School, Secondary English, Teachers Pay Teachers, Teaching tools, Texas, Uncategorized

I might be too old for this…- Navigating Social Media Marketing



In March of 2017, a colleague told me that I should post something on TPT because it was so great, and she thought other people would want to use it. In her words, “Why not give it a shot?” Fast forward to now. I’ve been bitten by the entrepreneurial bug, so to speak, and I’m all in this summer with figuring out how to do this thing right.

Let me give you a little background- I used to be considered a technology whiz. I was the campus tech contact, I taught a digital media elective, I was podcasting and using discussion boards back when that stuff was in its infancy. I thought I was pretty savvy. Not so much anymore. Do you know how many things you can do to get your name out there? Do you know how much money you can spend on ads, and promotions, and custom logos, and clip art, and fonts for commercial use…I mean, it’s exhausting! I started my store and came up with the catchy title Johnston’s ELA Gems. I think the English teacher in me insisted on alliteration of some kind in my business name. I’d make about $25 a month, and I was excited every time I sold something. Then one month I made over $100, and I thought, “I could really put some money away if this became a regular occurence”.

At the end of this year, when I would get home from work, I would work on my business. Now luckily, I have been doing the social media for my dad’s business for several years, so I’ve been doing graphics and photography, and learning about hashtags and text on a photo versus no text, and that people respond to hands and faces in posted pictures, and a whole bunch of other stuff I’m assuming you learn if you pursue a marketing degree. I’m an all-in English major, so all this was learned by trial and error. When I wanted to make my TPT store better, I got on YouTube and started watching videos.

Good. Lord. Do you know how many hours you can spend watching videos about how to TPT better? And how to get your blog noticed? And how to get more followers on Instagram? And how to create a Pinterest profile that helps your business? HOURS people, HOURS. Don’t even get me started on the black hole of distraction that is Pinterest. I’ve learned that Facebook doesn’t work as well for me as Instagram. And that Pinterest has ads??? And you can spend a ton of money trying to promote all these things. Even getting a business website has different levels of financial commitment. You are probably thinking, “Duh. How did you think this worked?” Well, truth be told, I had no reason to think about it at all until now.

And don’t even get me started on Twitter. I just can’t. Trying to use it makes me feels like I’ve had a frontal lobotomy.

As of today, I’m on this blog, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. And I’m THRILLED. I’m also pinning pins about how to pin your pins the best way for others to see them and pin them. I even bought a blogging planner…that overwhelms me when I try to use it. Even so, I consider myself a relatively intelligent person, so I know I’ll get there one day.

And I think that’s my only issue. One day. I’m so type A that when I decide to do something, I want it done NOW. This business relies on others taking action on what I put out there. So I have no control. Which is SOOOO not fun for me. And yet, it is. Because when I conquer a little piece of the social media world, I feel really good. I mean REALLY good.

I’m going to go read about optimizing my SEO now. Should be very enlightening.