How to Automate and Schedule Content on your Social Media Channel Profiles
Once you have created your social media pages, you will start to realize how much time it will take to keep them updated with new information. Fortunately, there is a way to make this process a lot easier and less time consuming. Social media management companies such as Hootsuite (https://hootsuite.com/) will allow you to schedule Facebook posts and tweets, monitor your conversations, and even more. This can save you hours of time each week.
There are a number of efficiencies available to unlock for your social media sites. The question is, how do you automate your social media sites, but still remain present with your audience? The answer is to make sure that you do automation correctly. You should not have a social media marketing campaign that begins and ends with automation.
Social media should not be treated like a rotisserie oven where you set it up and forget about it. Instead, consider your social media presence to be more like baking cookies. When you put the cookies in the oven your job is not over, you wither prepare the next batch, check in on the process, and make sure that they are cooking the right way.
Instead of forgetting about your social media sites when you set up automation, you need to automate what you can and still remain engaged consistently.
Work Smarter Not Harder
The purpose of automation is to help you work more efficiently. Automation can help you take your daily work time from several hours to 30 minutes or less. This can allow you to use your time more wisely. Once you realize that conversion and automation go hand in hand, you can work to create a more efficient process.
Steps for Automating Social Media
- Understanding when to Engage and when to Automate
When you first begin to use an automation program such as the one offered by Hootsuite, it is easy to become addicted. Once you have become more efficient in one area it is easy to keep going until you have mastered your entire amount of work. When it comes to social media it is important to resist this temptation. There are certain things that should be automated while others should not.
One useful way to build your brand is by finding and sharing quality content. Automation can help this process as it will provide a way to post these updates during the best times for your audience even if you are not around and it will free you up to find more great content to share.
A good rule of thumb to follow when it comes to sharing content is the 5-3-2 rule. Five of your posts should be content from others that are relevant for your audience. Three of the posts should come directly from you and not be a sales pitch. The other 2 posts should be personal and unrelated to work. This will help humanize your brand. Maintaining a schedule like this will allow you to focus on your audience and helps you stay on point with your marketing plan.
Non urgent social media posts can be automated as well. Many social media users find that they share quotes, tweets, thoughts, and other items through their social media accounts. If these posts are not time sensitive they are perfect for automation.
Your RSS feed can be automated as well. This will allow you to share your posts across many outlets all at once. It is a good idea to check the formatting of each site before you set up this process.
Choosing Your Automation Tools
Hootsuite is a great resource and works with many of the top social media management tools including YouTube, Tumblr, WordPress, and Instagram. You can easily set up the program within your website so sharing your content across all media platforms becomes automatic.
You can set up releases any way that you want by choosing the content that gets shared as well as the times of your posts. Using these tools can be extremely beneficial as you will be able to place everything that you find within a queue so that it will be sorted and ready to go when you are.
Finding an Ideal Posting Schedule
The next step is to create an ideal posting schedule. Most of the tools such as Hoot suite will allow you to put all of your great information into a queue so that you will be able to space out the times of your posts throughout the day or week. You should try to hit your audience at sensible times during the day. However, if you want to be specific about the times that you post there are certain criteria that you may consider:
- The time where most of your fans are located
- The times when your posts are most often clicked and shared
- The time you are available to respond to interactions
You can use tools such as Tweriod to analyze your followers in order to tell you when most of your followers are around and when they are engaged on social media. When it comes to determining the times where most people are online to chat here are some stats to consider:
- Twitter engagement is 17% higher on the weekend
- Twitter users are 181% more likely to be on twitter during their morning and evening commute
- The highest number of retweets occurs around 5 pm.
When it comes to setting up times to be able to respond it is really up to you. When you are scheduling you want to consider that it is not fun to miss out on conversations that are relevant to the content that you are posting because you are sleeping. Schedule times that not only have a higher user rate, but also correspond with when you will be able to respond.
Have a System for Staying Involved
As mentioned time and time again, social media is all about interaction. Even if you are setting up automation it is still important to make sure that you stay involved. It will be quite easy to just let things go once you have set up posts and tweets for automation.
One way to stay in touch is to use Google Alerts. This will provide you with an updated email every time you receive a mention. You can then respond as necessary. You can receive daily updates to show you who are saying what about your brand.
You should keep your notifications on so that you are aware of any opportunities for engagement as they occur. You do not need to opt in to every email from your social media channels, but you should definitely take the time to look at what notifications and alerts would be helpful.
Most importantly, set aside a time each day or at least a few times each week to visit each of your social media profiles and engage with your audience. You can use this time anyway that you see fit.