“H” is for Hibernation and Social Media

I’m going to keep this post short because it’s Saturday and I’ve been out decompressing in nature. Strolling along shooting pictures of the ravens and crows feasting on the compost heap at the Ravens restaurant at Stanford Inn By The Sea in Mendocino, I wondered where these corvids had been all winter knowing they don’t hibernate in the traditional sense of that word.

Both people and companies hibernate from social media.  Companies looking to redefine their social media strategy from broadcasting to engaging may find hibernation can be a useful strategy. Brands which hibernate may do so because of seasonality or lost market share. A great example of this comes from Cadbury and Cadbury Creme Egg campaign.

Faced with flagging sales figures—a 35% drop in sales over a two-year period—Cadbury relaunched its product with an alluring new campaign featuring the eggs unwrapping themselves and seeking partners on dating sites or flirting with commuters at a local train station. After the end of Easter, the brand hibernates on social media until the next year. The impact of these ad campaigns is to create a sense of mystery while improving engagement for the brand.

Cadbury’s Facebook Page

For people looking to take a break from social media, sites such as http://www.hibernate.cc offer short term hibernation challenges as a way to help users redefine their use of social media to create better balance in their lives. For other thoughts on how and why hibernation can increase life satisfaction, here’s a handy guide.

Should you choose to take a break from social media for longer than 24 hours, it’s a good idea to let people know you will be gone from social media and when you expect to return.



6 Replies to ““H” is for Hibernation and Social Media”

  1. Like I’ve ever gone longer than 24 hours. Lol. I will get there eventually. I’m curious why we should make others aware of our absence and future return…

    1. Denise, the idea is two fold. It allows us to set reader expectations and we also model a more intentional behavior. As people start to grasp how big an issue social media has become, we’re likely to see much more intentionality around hibernation, vacations, and fasts. Some of the leaders in this area are the people who work in companies which develop these technologies who have developed systems to manage this in their lives. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  2. I have a friend who gives up social media for Lent. Since it is part of my paid employment responsibilities, I cannot take a break unless I go on vacation from work or if I am out sick.

    P.S. You had me at Cadbury. I am eating the last of my “real” Cadbury from Australia right now. The American version made by Hershey is awful. But that’s another post. 😉

    1. Denise, I would love to know more about how you manage this given that your work requires your involvement in social media. People who have to manage this as part of their job often have great systems and tips for the rest of us. I terms of the Cadbury egg, I’d like to read your post. Thanks for dropping by and for commenting too.

      1. I have created a social media calendar for work – when posts will go up, when we will look to share other pages and posts, etc. As an organization, we (read: me/I) respond to all comments within the same day and we respond to all messages as soon as possible but always within 24 hours. I spend 10 minutes each morning and then 10 minutes each afternoon checking out the pages of our competitors, friends, other community partners, federal or state government pages related to disability, etc. It is important to set a time and stick to it or else it will eat up your day.

        When I am on vacation, I still receive notices about the page because it I am listed as an administrator. Usually, I will contact the other administrator to make sure she is following up if follow up is required. While I was out for almost 3 months, I did not post any new content to the page. I did not share or act as the page on social media. I only used my own account.

        I’m not sure if this answered your question but I’m happy to have further discussion in email if you’d like.

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