Spending too many hours each day handling social media-related tasks such as posting, responding to mentions, curating content, creating graphics, etc. can be a nightmare.
Scheduling is important because it allows you to reach your targeted audience, even when inconvenient. For instance, if you get sick or super busy, are unavailable to post at a specific time each day, or have limited time to devote to these tasks. There are several actions you can take to save time and energy.
Garrett Moon of CoSchedule has a concept of “created time.” He’s identified three ways to improve productivity:
- Add more tools (or in some cases people).
- Eliminate something, and hone in on what matters.
- Put in more time (or use it better).
To achieve these goals, the entrepreneur should consider implementing the following:
- Use a social media management system for posting.
- Budget a half hour each day for social media scoping.
- Have a customer service team member respond to questions and inquiries.
- Use a social media reporting system for analyzing metrics and measuring ROI.
There are several tools and procedures authors can implement quickly that will assist in reducing the time required to manage social media accounts.
Before You Schedule
Identify the best content to post and the best time to post it. Within Facebook you can look at the Insights tab and you can use Twitter Analytics to evaluate what works and the best time to feature your content.
Have one place where you keep all of your ideas for content and reminders on what you should be posting. Dropbox, Evernote and Google Calendar are three tools authors can use to manage their content. In addition, each of these resources are cloud-based and can be accessible via PC, phone or tablet. Try to schedule 30 minutes at the beginning or end of the week to update your content, which can be easily accessible for future posting.
Every author wants to keep their content top of mind with their target audience. However, they don't have a lot of time and sometimes even will forget to post regularly. There are many social media scheduling platforms available, each offering different features and for some platforms you can schedule your posts in advance.
For instance, the Facebook Page provides a scheduling feature (click the little arrow next to the Post button) that allows you to choose any day and time to have your post go out. Authors can also schedule their Facebook posts in Hootsuite and Buffer.
Twitter and LinkedIn posts can also be scheduled from Hootsuite and Buffer. Since Twitter doesn't allow you to schedule tweets, Tweetdeck, a Twitter scheduler can be used for this function as well as keep track of lists, searches, activity and more. These tools can make your social to-do list easier to accomplish. Plus, you can get all of your metrics in one place.
Keeping Abreast of Things
Staying on top of updates and the newest information related to your subject matter will save time. Three social media blogs or resources to bookmark include Marshable, Facebook for Business and Twitter Blog.
Keeping abreast also means knowing what your industry leaders and platform followers are doing. Knowing what they are posting can provide good content to share with your followers. While most social media management tools allow you to see all of your feeds at once, you still have to scroll through each feed and look at the content. The Swayy app compiles a list of content that you`re interested in based on keywords that you feed it and, with one click, you can share your choices with your audience.
Other options include:
- Nuzzel, News.me. These tools highlight the posts that are being shared by those you follow on Twitter and Facebook.
- Twitter lists. You can create a go-to list of your favorite curators by adding them to a Twitter list. Browse the Twitter list to see all the stories they share.
- Email newsletters. Subscribe to newsletters of people who inspire you and websites you admire.
Cut Back on Sites
Often, small business owners feel that need a social media presence on all the channels available. Even with all the tools mentioned, it can be a lot to manage. Christopher Penn of SHIFT Communications states, "It's better to do a few well than a lot poorly". I wholeheartedly agree.
Start by dropping just one account, and access your time commitment. If you`re still going over your allotted social time, consider trimming another account. Of course, before dropping the account look at your metrics, click through rates and conversions. If the account isn't contributing to your success, drop it!
In a nutshell, there are several ways you can save time when completing social media-related tasks. Schedule your posts a week in advance, create a list of go-to articles to reshare, find trusted sources for content suggestions and where feasible cut out a social media platform that is not showing return for your investment in time.
Here’s a list of 45 social media mobile apps from Buffer to take a look at and get you started.
Call to Action
Do you have any social media time saver suggestions? If so, share them with us by posting them in the comment box below.