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December 13, 2010


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Why limiting or minimizing tv watching can significantly boost social media marketing productivity. [Read More]


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Donna Papacosta

Very true and well said, David. I often use the same analogy, adding that "We all find the time for the things that are important to us." (I feel the same way about TV as you do. I wonder how people "don't have time" to exercise or market their businesses, but they have time to watch 20 hours of sitcoms and reality shows each week.)

Like you, I exercise in the morning. I enjoy it because it makes me feel good and I can listen to podcasts while I'm doing it.

It has become part of what I do. And so has "doing" social media. I make time for it because it's important to me.


Disclosure: I am the SEM & Social Media Specialist @Marketwire.

It's funny you compare social media to exercise. Back in January, we launched a "social media fitness program" called sm10x30. Each "workout" is presented in an email format that asks participants to spend 30 minutes a day for 10 days "working out". It's been a very successful campaign for us with over 5,000 registered and have received numerous compliments telling us how they embraced the "fitness" analogy.

Thanks for the entertaining post.

Nick @shinng

David Meerman Scott

Glad this analogy has been used before!

You're right Donna - sitcoms and reality TV vs. your health and business? Seems an obvious choice!

Marketwire - Great program! I'll check out the link.

Viji Iyer

This post is right on the money from where I stand! Especially given that I realize that I have been slacking lately on both accounts so thank you for this wake-up post! :)


People find time for what they value. If they see the ROI of social media, they will find the time to devote to it. When I'm asked how I find the time for social media, I answer with another question

"If I told you I would give you $10,000 at the end of 30 days if you could devote one hour a day to social media - every day, for that 30 days .. how many of you could find the time?"

Most people raise their hands. So I then tell them ... "See? You will find the time when you see the value and understand the impact."

Ned Barnett

Like you, I've (but only recently) made twitter/social media a part of my life - twice. The first time, I didn't get the business connection and let it slide - I was following and being followed by people in an interest area outside of business, and it became one more hobby.

Then I read your New Rules book and got a stern talking-to from my webmaster and good friend (and social media guru Jube Dankworth at Net Media Consultants and became a believer. Now I post original "PR Pro" tweets at least once a day (but probably not more than 3x/day - I don't want to overstay my welcome), plus commenting on other tweets.

And I've also gotten active in blogging about what I know best - how combining the best of traditional PR and marketing with the New Rules you so effectively promulgate does better than either approach alone.

I'd blogged "occasionally" for a decade, but never consistently enough to build a following - and in traditional "control the message" fashion, I didn't welcome comments (you set me straight on that one). Now I actively seek them, and also seek opportunities such as this to add comments which I hope add value.

By doing it daily I'm building a network of tweet followers and a few blog followers, too. Next step, Facebook and Linkedin, but only after I've really gotten my social media work ingrained in my soul.

BTW - I have a hard time creating in silence - so I have the TV on (my TiVo'd late-night fix of RedEye, usually) when I write my blogs, and I get my tweet-start early a.m. in front of the morning news. I have my treadmill right there next to me - that's my next challenge for making it part of my life.

Thanks for the inspiration, coach.

Jake LaCaze

I love the analogy, David. And also, your last point about cutting out TV...

I've recently realized that many people who say they "don't have the time" actually have more time than they claim. What they really mean to say is "I don't have the discipline".

Alex Vasquez

Hello Mr. Scott,

I have to say what you posted is exactly what most companies have to apply to their mentality when it comes to Social Media. I work for a Non-Profit Organization and they don't want to invest the time on Social Media. As I am reading your book The New Rules to Marketing and PR online, I am receiving insight to understanding a entire different approach to content on the web. The analogy of exercise and social media is a great way of getting the message out to people who are in the marketing business. If we are going into the arena of posting content on the web, we have to exercise our time on Facebook, Twitter and various Social Media websites. Thank you for your post.

Tony Faustino

An additional point related to the similarities between social media and exercise are the mental benefits one derives from participating in both activities. One of my favorite blog posts by Adam Singer is Blogging is Like Going to the Gym...For Your Brain (http://bit.ly/ft5A6H). When I write a blog post or provide a blog comment, it's stimulating intellectual exercise. My goal is to publish something valuable that hopefully adds to the conversation (and that takes careful thought on my part).

I completed a marathon nine years ago and completed my first MS 150 cycling ride this past fall, and the sense of accomplishment one feels when crossing the finish line is beyond description. I feel that same sense of joy after publishing a blog post that might have taken a little bit longer to write because I know I invested the time, effort, and research to carefully support my point-of-view.

David Meerman Scott

"People find time for what they value." Great way of showing the value, Mindieb. Thanks!

Glad that you are building a following Ned! Keep up the good work.

Jake & Alex - thanks for jumping in.

Tony - great point on the mental exercise aspects. So true!

Remco Janssen

Thanks for the useful insight yet again, David. I have one important questions that I have been dealing with a few times in this matter:

Not everybody has the energy or discipline to get up at 4 in the morning? Especially the (senior) corporate marcom folks I meet, they are all mid or late 30's. Most of them have small children and welcome every ounce of sleep they can get - you know what I'm talking about. How and where would social media, or exercise, fit in to their way to busy schedule?

I have fitted social media succesfully into my daily plans, but with exercise it's way harder... I even bought and XBox 360 Kinect to have a fun way to keep fit, that only worked for a month or so.

David Meerman Scott

Hey Remco - I'd tell those Marcom people that they must make the time. Cut out television is a good way.

For me, morning is best. But I do everything early. I go to bed at 9, so getting up at 4 is easy. You just need to make time! My wife's Japanese friends do it the other way - they stay up late and do their own things after the kids are in bed.

Adam Singer

Made a similar analogy last year: http://goo.gl/YgI80 Good stuff David!

Oliver Cheatham

I've just started to get into a work out routine and I struggle at keeping up with my blog. I continue to find myself trying to find time in my day to write and I have recently been thinking about hiring someone to handle my social media. But I like that you put it like that. Perspective if funny. When you look at things differently, you start to find ways to make it work when you never thought it would before. So, great analogy! One day I'll be writing like you.

Heidi Cohen

David--I love the analogy. Social media participation is like exercise. One of the challenges that most people have with social media is that it's not a discipline like reading the old fashioned newspaper, it's a time suck so that they're spending hours trolling around looking and chatting without purpose. What most social media participants need is a social media regime. Thank you for sharing this. Happy marketing, Heidi Cohen

michael michelini

I definitely like this idea of exercise as social media, and yes I cut out TV years ago....that has been such a POSITIVE effect on my life overall....

I also like to say - IF YOU WANT TO DO IT, YOU WILL FIND TIME. If it is important to you, you will make time.

That is just how life is.


I certainly agree. Unfortunately, I find it much easier to partake in social media than physically exercise daily!

Chad Freeman

Thanks for the link back David!

aluminium kozijnen

This is really too nice.. Social media is compared to exercise.. This is great example.. Thanks for this information sharing with us..

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