How to Use Social Media Automation to Improve Your Results (and Not Lose Your Mind)
Not too long ago I broke down my daily social media management routine to explain how I manage all my client accounts without losing my mind.
In this post I want to briefly cover how planning and social media automation are my best friends when it comes to effectively staying on top of regular posts while having time for other activities that improve your social media marketing results.
Why Use Social Media Automation?
If I didn’t use social media automation I would be pulling my hair out, because I simply wouldn't have time for anything besides posting to each social network – not too effective.
It’s super helpful to schedule your pre-determined posts (which you’ve worked out in your content schedule) ahead of time, so you’re free to spend your new found time on whatever your heart desires - which will probably be to cross another item off that ever-growing to-do list.
Getting posts scheduled and out of the way will also give you more time to do one of the most overlooked and time-consuming social media tasks – actually engaging with your audience. I usually plan and schedule about a month’s worth of content for each of my clients ahead of time.
Another benefit to scheduling your social media posts is that you’ll have the opportunity to plan out your brand story through your social posts. Using social media automation gives you a chance to see all your posts from a “big picture” perspective, which makes it way easier to think about how to lead one post into another, where you can improve, or where live posts can be plugged in.
Some of my favorite scheduling services are:
Hootsuite enables you to schedule content on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn (profiles and Company Pages), Google+, Instagram and YouTube.
The service has its kinks (like not being able to tag companies on LinkedIn via the dashboard) but it's a reliable, free to low-cost option to use.
I'm not only an AgoraPulse contributor, I'm an AgoraPulse user. If you have a budget, this is the tool to go with.
Creating posts for all your networks is easy to do, and the analytics are beautifully presented and easy to understand.
Through Buffer, my favorite content of the day gets scheduled at the times when my audience is most active, all within one click.
Buffer also enables you to take older tweets and retweet them again in one click. I only have the basic plan at the moment, but upgrading gives you more “slots” to schedule, along with other great features (including tweet analytics).
Planoly and UNUM
I use Planoly and UNUM for planning my Instagram feed and scheduling. These apps can also provide some very basic analytics for your account (I’d still stick to the built-in Insta analytics, or Sqaurelovin for more in-depth insights).
Planoly can be used on desktop while UNUM is a mobile app only.
When it comes to Facebook I schedule posts right from the built-in Facebook Page publisher on desktop and within the app. There's a wide range of scheduling services out there, from really simple, to more complicated options. Try out a few different ones and see which best suits your needs.
Finally, do automate, but don’t rely solely on post scheduling.
You need some live action mixed into your content strategy - whether it’s a timely tweet using the hashtag for the event you’re attending, or sharing an article your favorite industry magazine just published, leave room for real-time posts and interactions.
Make sure to also leave spaces for timely posts when you’re planning your content posting schedule. This will keep you from sounding robotic, and will break up the look of your pre-scheduled posts. When using social media automation for your posts, be sure to check up on them to make sure they’ve posted. Service outages and system failures do happen, so it’s good to keep a look out for your posts.
Article and image(s) via Social Media Today