I hear it time and again from my channel partners: “I don’t have the time to tweet with people. It’s just another form of instant messaging.” While I appreciate everyone’s time, especially during this recession where more of you are doing the bulk of the work, working harder and longer hours, simply to stay afloat. But a social media study by Michael Stelzner, “Social Media Marketing Industry Report,” makes it clear – nearly 90% of marketers now use social media. There’s no question that there is a time commitment, especially if you’re going to work social media to your advantage and do it right, make a plan, and set measurable goals. But nearly two thirds in that study were tweeting, updating and making connections for five hours or more a week and 39% were using it 10 hours or more. Those who are newbies tend to use these outlets less; and the longer someone has been on the sites the more time they dedicate to using them as a business tool each week. What you need to be is strategic about your time – just like you would with anything else. Ironically, the more experienced you become with the top sites – Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, and Facebook – the more you can integrate them all so you’re only making updates on one, then feeding to the rest. Why is it that we procrastinate about those things that we spark our fear of he unknown? Get in there, set up your account and profile, and create a plan. Tell your story. Be honest. Become a resource. Chat it up.