Why Every Marketer Benefits From a Little Social Media Automation
If you’re a small business marketer, you might think social media automation tools are only for professionals. They’re not. Social media automation tools are super effective for any size business in any field.
You know you need to be active on social to connect with your audience. Not just to hawk what you sell, but to share some of your human-ness, how you think, what advice you have to offer. The challenge is keeping up with the pace of social so you are sharing consistently, the right content, on the right platforms, at the right time.
That’s where social media automation tools can help, and the advantages are significant.
- Pre-schedule your social media posts
- Ensure that you are posting consistently, week over week, month over month
- Leverage older posts so don’t have to be so reliant on always creating new content
- More control over the type of content you share
- Post content to multiple platforms
- Automate repetitive social publishing tasks
- Manage all of your social media accounts in one place
- Track your results.
I don’t know a single marketer that isn’t strapped for time, Who doesn’t want to save time on repetitive tasks? Who doesn’t want to become more productive? Who doesn’t want to spend more time doing things that have a greater return on investment and maybe even have some time to do the things you love?
That’s what prompted me to reach out to Laura Roeder, she’s the founder of Edgar, one of my favorite social media automation tools. Laura’s road to recognition didn’t start out focused on being a tech entrepreneur, but she’s always been focused on how to scale. She began early on as blogger and social media consultant, she was even named one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under 35 in 2011, 2013 and 2014 working with the likes of Marie Forleo & Sir Richard Branson.
Somewhere along the way, she hatched an idea to build a software company that could fill the void she was experiencing first hand, that is, automating the parts of social that could benefit from a touch of technology. Don’t miss the interview with Laura, she’s a powerhouse that’s built an amazing tool you’ll want in your marketing tool belt, she also shares some deep insight into her journey.
Getting Started with Social Media Automation
Automating your social media marketing works the same way as the tasks that many of us have automated with MailChimp, Salesforce, Constant Contact, IFTTT or Zapier. Being social online can suck the life out of your day, especially as a business marketer, this is time you just can’t afford to waste.
But automating your social media activities poses a challenging question:
That’s a good question, and a challenge that we constantly face when building trust online, start by being human.
Don’t Over-Automate your Social Media
The Basics of Social Media Automation
Now that we’re all in agreement that marketing systems aka marketing automation can help us be more effective, we can get to work automating the right parts of social media intelligently.
Start by following these simple ABC’s.
Let’s looks at some tools…
The Only Social Media Automation Tools You Need to Get Started
While there a dozens of options when it comes to social media automation tools, I use 3 tools for 3 very different reasons.
It works like this, Edgar lets you organizes and categorizes your content within a digital library. Then you tell Edgar what types of updates to share at which times, and on what channels. After it posts an update, that particular post will be put back at the bottom of the pile to use again later. This continues until you change the settings. This is worth it’s weight in gold if you have a significant library of useful and relevant evergreen content.
This is my social listening and engagement tool of choice. Hootsuite allows you to create a dashboard of all your social platforms, all your most import groups and keywords so you can respond in realtime or at least at your now regularly scheduled engagement time. I spend 15 minutes per day on Hootsuite, responding to tweets, commenting on posts, sharing, liking and engaging with the content that my audience cares about. It helps me work efficiently in quasi real time.
Buffer is my curation tool of choice. While there are slight overlaps between all of these tools, they each excel at something very specific for my needs. In this case, I use Buffer to curate content that I find on the web, content that is somewhat time sensitive, meaning that it has a shelf life, like an upcoming event. Or, content from my favorite sources, whether that be people I follow or blogs that I like to read. I tend to spend time curating and scheduling post for social sharing twice a week +-. It usually takes me about 20 minutes.
Now it’s time to think about the right time to schedule your social media posts.
One of my favorite articles on the subject of finding the right time to post on social was written by Lindsay Kolowich
All The Best Times to Post on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Other Social Media Sites
So … When’s the best time to post content to social media?
Unfortunately, there’s no perfect answer. Different businesses may find different days and times work best for them. In fact, timing often depends on the platform you’re using, how your target audience interacts with that platform, the region(s) you’re targeting, the content of your post (e.g. funny or serious), and your goals (e.g. clicks versus shares).
I couldn’t say it better. Here’s the Infographic from the Hubspot Blog,
What’s Working For You?
Hopefully this article has given you a good place to start with social media automation. Let me know in the comments what’s working for you, what tools you use and any tricks you have up your sleeve.