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Why I stopped tweeting for AntrimHour


I have had the pleasure of hosting a Twitter Hour every Monday night for over a year now – I think I took it on around spring 2016.   Without too many misses -maybe a few bank holidays,  a couple of fill-ins from the fabulous Karen Wilson at Mallusk Enterprise Agency when we were on holiday or – let’s be honest -I just needed a break, I was tweeting every Monday night and engaging with a great bunch of local busines owners.

So why am I quitting it now?   Back in the spring of this year, I was ready to hang up my hat for Antrim Hour.   I don’t think people realise how hard it is to come up with a new topic every week, and to be tied to your twitter account every single week at the same time.  Add in home life – kids bedtimes,  drop-offs from their activities happening during the hours – it all gets quite busy!

I had spoken with a few parties about getting some sponsorship of the hour – meaning it would turn into a client of sorts.   If I was getting paid to do it, then it would become part of my weekly business tasks.   And that actually became a problem in itself.

I realised that to run a Twitter hour, you have to WANT to run it!

I left my ‘proper job’ because I no longer enjoyed it, and I am now in the wonderful position of only taking on clients and pieces of work that I want to do.  (this comes with years of experience – if you are new,  take all the work you can do within reason to get yourself up and running!)

Turning the AntrimHour into a paying client really started the end of the road for me.   The bits I enjoyed were the parts where I determined what we talked about, what the questions were,  signposting people to my own business.   The bits I had fallen out of love with were the weekly realisation it was Monday night and I HAD to be tweeting whether I wanted to or not. Those bits would still exist whether I was getting paid or not.  So the paid part didn’t work out.  Which was fine.  Leaving me wondering what to do.

I contacted the original owner of the Antrim Hour,  Edel Pauley of Pauley Business Services and spoke to her about it.  We agreed that is someone else wanted to take it on, that would be an option.   But also that if it wasn’t actually part of my own business development plan, then it was not right for Social Bee.

Which brings me to the crux of the issue.   While the participants of the Antrim Hour are all really great people and excellent business owners, my own business is not geographically targeted.  My aim is to work with women entrepreneurs who are trying to figure out how to market their business online.   The AntrimHour tweeps don’t really fit that description.

If you are going to spend weekly hours working on something in your business, you have to make sure its actually going to BRING YOU BUSINESS!   Ironically, as the AntrimHour is run through a separate Twitter account called @AntrimHour,  I wasn’t even able to participate at Social Bee in my own hour.

I do love TwitterHours, and maybe one day I will start up one again – but I would put it under my own Twitter handle, and I would make sure it was aimed at my own audience. Lesson learned.

In the meantime, if you think you would be a great caretaker of the AntrimHour, do get in touch… they are a friendly bunch!

8 replies on “Why I stopped tweeting for AntrimHour”

Great to see a female entrepreneur making a sensible commercial decision difficult or unpopular as it may be.

Totally empathise Louise and 100% agree with your decision. With 12 active twitter hours across NI & more further afield as well as additional ones in specific industries (sure there’s even a chicken Hour!) it really does need a significant amount of time commitment and the time invested won’t always pay off – although for me and my clients it has returned in more ways than just sales. I’m now more now than ever a fan of a more manageable monthly twitter hour approach for smaller regional hours such as this as per the approach Castlereagh Hour have now taken. Thank you for taking the reins for the past few years and wishing you every success with SocialBee and more importantly happiness.
I’m sure to be seeing you as SocialBee on a Twitter hour soon – or better still face to face! Christine

You have made a well informed and commercially sensible decision Louise. You have done an amazing job keeping Antrim Hour exciting and interactive. Well done on everything and good luck with your own ventures as you move forward x

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