Are You Making Social Media Harder Than it Needs to be?
For businesses today, social media is practically a necessity. Customers expect you to be there (and look for you there). Competitors likely spend time there. And most business owners know it’s important. But managing a social platform strategy can also be challenging and time-consuming—unless you know a few insider tricks. Read on to find out if you’re making social media harder than it needs to be.
Save time by planning ahead.
One of the best ways to organize and streamline a social media program is to create a content calendar. This helps you plan your posts in advance, so you’re never scrambling what to post on a given day. There are many ways to go about this, but here is how I recommend getting started:
- Choose your medium, whether Excel, your email calendar or a third-party tool. Here's a calendar template to get you started.
- Decide the type of content you will post. For instance, this may be broken into categories such as educational, promotional, news/updates, current events, fun, etc.
- Some of this you can plan ahead, such as evergreen educational or fun posts, and these are what you want to plan ahead in your calendar. Others, like current events or your latest promotion, may need to be added in last minute, so you can put a placeholder in your calendar for those.
- When you plan out posts, keep in mind these guidelines to make your life as easy as possible later on:
- Write out the full post or tweet, including hashtags, anyone else you want to tag in the post, etc.
- Include the hyperlink you want, so you don’t need to track it down later.
- If you’re planning to include an image or video, link to that in your calendar as well.
- Create a schedule for maintaining your calendar (perhaps you will have a planning session once per month). This will greatly streamline your day-to-day social media activities.
Make your life easier with automation.
The second step to streamlining your social media program is to use an automation tool, so you don’t need to remember to post your updates at a certain day and time throughout the week. There are many tools out there, but I favor Buffer.
Buffer allows you to connect all your social media accounts, choose a posting schedule for each, and then easily schedule upcoming posts (including links, photos and videos). I recommend creating your content calendar, and then at the beginning of every week, scheduling all your posts using Buffer. Then your social media is all set for the week!
Important note: This strategy greatly reduces the day-to-day time spent on your social media program, but it’s important that you don’t just “set it and forget it”. Social media is all about interaction and connection, so don’t forget to spend some time throughout the week engaging with your followers. If you need help with starting your social media presence, check out our ebook on the subject, or contact Milwaukee marketing agency, Accelity Marketing.