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Do the Work. Social Media is Work.

Posted on Dec 1, 2012 by in ThiNK First | 45 comments


Social media is work. Lots of work. Let’s not confuse work and play. Work is work.

Success is in the detail, the strategy, the execution. There’s no denying the work.

But we often forget.

We think social is social, chit chat. We can think social is fun, and often it is. We forget that social is work. We forget that social can be hard.

We forget and ignore that others are working hard. Perhaps they make it look easy, but they are working.

Perhaps they are established. They have already done their work. Perhaps they are already reaping their rewards, but don’t be fooled, they’ve put in their time and done their work.

Others have mastered the art, for them, their way.

They have built their audience, connections and community.

Do what it takes. There are no shortcuts.

Other people have written blog posts, created slidedecks, videos and podcasts.

You don’t create miracles and move mountains without work.

If you want miracles, you’d better get on with your work.

Oddly, sometimes you have to just have to stop talking.

Is that blog live yet? Do you have your next post written? Do you have a plan?

Social Media is lots of work. Lots of small actions. Lots of small miracles.

Social media is repetition. Building. Layering. Finessing. Connection by connection. Act by act. Event by event.

It’s all work. Work with people is still work. Conversation is still work.

Nothing has to be perfect.

You do have to hit send or publish.

You do have to let go. Move on.

You have to risk seeing your posts get ignored.

You have to risk getting no comments and no engagement.

That is the work, or part of it.

Social media is trust building. That is work.

Social media is faith. Blind faith in your plan.

Failing is work just as much as succeeding.

Work is work. You can’t shirk the work. Do it.

Do the work, not the talk.

You don’t need more advice.

It’s time to get off the sidelines.

Say no to needing more opinions or more data. You need your own data, you need your own 1st hand experience in the trenches. You need your own bruises and scars.

No more spectating.

No more lurking.

Comment on your experiences, not your expectations.

Stop imagining.

Comment because you know, not because you’ve heard.

Live it.

Work it. Work it, for all you have.

Dedicate yourself to the work.

Begin your journey.

Mastery takes work.

There is no denying. Enjoy the journey, but begin it.

Begin your journey. Put your people and your content crafting and your storytelling skills to work.

That’s how it works.

Then work becomes play. Are you ready? Ready to play?

Image Credit:  chachijones via and Creative Commons

Nick Kellet (164 Posts)

Nick is co-founder the social curation platform Listly, that combines crowdsourcing, content curation and embedable lists to drive high-level community engagement, live inside your blog posts. Connect with Nick on Twitter · Linkedin, Facebook and G+ and follow his writing via his other guest posts and on his blogs at and


  1. I love when I see conversations with my friends reflected in the material those friends create. Thanks for this encouraging post @Nickkellet. And thanks for encouraging me to keep waling.

    • Tweet4OK It works both ways:) t’s funny how a handful of conversations with different people influence and idea. Thanks for the inspiration.

  2. READY ! Wow that post was a lot of work…… but I read it all!

  3. There are so many pearls of knowledge in this article that I won’t quote any. 
    To me, social media is a mixture between work and play. But it’s more fun than actual work, because I am passionate about it. This also makes a difference in the way you communicate with others. 
    Your entire post reads like a poem. Was it intentional?

    • cendrinemedia It’s all about flow. Works feels like play at that point. I’m with you I love every moment. I just dawned on me that it feels like play, when we need to remember it’s work and that some people make it look easy. Like the kids in the class that jokes around and they gets straight A’s. Social Media can be like that. Perhaps you just aren’t seeing them do the work, but they are or they have.
      This is I guess part poem. I have another posts that I’m working on that’s even more like that.
      I guess I’ve just been having fun writing lately and experimenting with brevity.

    • jmozen Thanks for commenting. We all need reminders. It’s so easy to get lost in a sea of content, curation and connections. Crazy but fun times:)

  4. Thanks @gpierson @YouTernMark Really interesting RT @YouTernMark: Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @NickKellet

  5. Thanks:) @4JeffBrown @AxelS “@AxelS: Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @NickKellet” Great read. Thanks Axel 🙂

  6. Thanks:) @vscotttheauthor @NickKellet Interesting take on it=>Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @NickKellet

    • @NickKellet My pleasure, thought it was a terrific post!

  7. Thanks for sharing:) @_BoBina Do the Work. Social Media is Work. … via cc: @pegahrashti @raevotta #socialdisruption

    • Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes Thanks. I love that expression. I remember a friend saying that to me in my teens. It’s always struck me as such a potent mindset.

  8. @burgess_shelley @nickkellet glad you liked it. I connected with nick on triberr, do you know it?

  9. Thanks:) @MoniqueRamsey @PamMktgNut “@PamMktgNut: Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @NickKellet” SO TRUE!

  10. Thanks:) @jcmdesigns @lorirtaylor So true! RT @lorirtaylor: Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @NickKellet

  11. @hollyjosey @PaulBiedermann Thanks:)

  12. You hit it on the nail, you got to work on your marketing, no work, no customers or visitors to your website, blog or social media. Well done!

  13. U Do @tamcdonald Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @nickkellet I guess I’ve made it look easy. Fun, but work.

  14. Thanks @VisuaLStimuluS_ @tamcdonald Here Here 🙂 RT @tamcdonald: Do the Work. Social Media is Work. via @nickkellet

  15. @anntran_ Hard work at that. Never. Stops.

  16. 🙂 @littlemissmocha @Steph_Montreuil Love this. MT @steph_montreuil: No shortcuts in social. Do the work. @NickKellet

  17. Thanks for sharing:) @AnnTran_ @tamcdonald Do the Work. Social Media is Work. I guess I’ve made it look easy.

  18. @MeghanMBiro @NickKellet It is work, and that’s often forgotten. 🙂 Thanks, Nick.

  19. Wow, Nick, I love this. The is the best thing I’ve read today. Thank you. Now I have to get back to work.

  20. @mikeebinum That’s a plugin for wordpress.

    • @NickKellet ahh cool, thanks for that

  21. No faking! @BrianMakas (A haiku simalr to @FAKEGRIMLOCK advice w/o the CAPSLOCK) RT @SteamFeedcom #SMM is Work.


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