The key to success is to understand that you are courting failure by not taking the time to plan your endeavor. This is true for everything from home building to social media marketing. Properly planning your social media campaign will take the guess work out of creating content and provide you with the flexibility needed to adapt to new opportunities as they develop. Here are some tips as to how social media scheduling can help you organize content, increase user engagement, and save money over the long haul:
How Social Media Scheduling Can Benefit Your Campaign
There are many ways that scheduling can improve the effectiveness of your campaign, including:
- Reach Your Users When They Are Online
- Post Real-Time Updates Without Wasting Resources
- Prevent Post Delays And Pileups
- Manage Your Promotional/Creative Ratio (Try To Hit 80% Creative)
- Ensure Consistent Voice Across All Platforms
In short, by taking the time to plan your campaign you will afford yourself the opportunity to identify issues in advance and to structure your posting schedule so that you can concentrate on working with clients instead of hovering around a keyboard waiting for the right moment.
Some Tips For Scheduling Your Content Postings
With practice, scheduling your postings will be as easy and rewarding as developing your work schedule. After all, when handled properly it removes the fear, uncertainty, and doubt that plagues most media campaigns. Here are five tips to help you get the most out of the social media scheduling tool you select:
1. Choose A Tool Developed For Your Preferred Social Media Platforms
When starting out it is easy to become overwhelmed by the variety of platforms available as well as the number of tools at hand to manage them. Instead, focus on one or two social media platforms and find a tool with a proven track record with it. Once you are comfortable with that configuration you can expand to additional platforms and maximize your social media presence.
Each platform has a different purpose and target audience, meaning you will be learning a great deal along the way. There is no shortcut to this process unless you are willing to lose potential sales leads due to a misunderstanding. Speak with other companies to see what they use and go from there to ensure you have the greatest possible chance of getting it right the first time.
2. Fill In Your Social Media Content Calendar In Advance
Planning your content in advance is about finding the right balance between certainty and having the flexibility to change things up when opportunities arise. A good way to handle this is to have a small section of your planned posts be open for alteration at the last minute, say 10%.
Before settling on the number, it is vital that you have an understanding as to how many posts, per platform, will result in the maximum possible benefit. DowSocial found, based on their research, while you should be posting on your preferred platforms on a daily basis, an optimal posting schedule looks like this:
- Instagram: 3 posts per day
- Facebook: 2 posts per day
- LinkedIn: 1 post per day
- Pinterest: 3 posts per day
- Twitter: 6 posts per day
- Google+: 3 posts per day
3. Ensure You Post A Diverse Array of Content
Publishing different types of content on a regular basis not only helps prevent burnout on the part of your creative team, it incentivizes readers to return and experience something entirely different the next day. Here are some of the types of content you should consider developing for your planned social media campaign:
There is always something happening in your industry, no matter how boring it may be. Show you are an authority on the subject and grow in popularity on professional social media networks as a result.
This enables you to gain new contacts while also discovering what your target demographic needs and wants from your company. Twitter, Facebook, and even LinkedIn offer the ability to create chats that allow you to engage with your audience in real time.
Creative Contests That Reward Those Who Promote Your Brand
Give out small items to those that promote your content most effectively in a small time frame. This is perfect for holes in your calendar that seem impossible to fill.
Find your “power users” and invite them to share their experiences with your product or service on your social media pages. This will enable you to promote your brand without having to resort to potentially ineffective sales techniques. Let those who know what your product can do speak on your behalf, for free!
Behind The Scenes Material
Neither the creation of laws nor sausages should be viewed by the public. Thankfully, your company produces neither. Let people see your company at work to add a human touch to your enterprise and encourage positive dialogue. Just make certain the material will be of naught to the reader – few want to know what your CEO did in the Caribbean.
Here is an example of behind the scenes material Microsoft posted, showing how they made a commercial for the Surface Pro 3:
4. Make Certain Everything Is Reviewed And Approved Before Posting
You will be able to ensure complete editorial control by limiting the ability for your employees to post new content. Consider it an insurance policy against public media gaffs, inaccurate or off-topic content, and material published before the company is ready.
Remember that social media is the modern equivalent of a newspaper. Would you trust an article written in a paper with poor editorial control? If not, then how can you expect readers to trust your social media profile if you do not exercise careful control?
5. Schedule Publication Based Upon User Patterns
Knowing when to publish is often as important as knowing what to publish. By posting new content as readers hop online you can vastly improve your organic reach. According to HubSpot, the times for popular platforms are:
Twitter: 12-3 PM on Monday through Friday, 5-6 PM on Wednesday
Facebook: 1-4 PM on Thursday and Friday, 3-4 PM on Wednesday, 12-1 PM on Saturday and Sunday
LinkedIn: 7:30-8:30 AM, 12 PM, and 5-6 PM on Tuesday through Thursday, 10-11 AM on Tuesday
Instagram: Anytime Monday through Thursday, except between 3-4PM
Pinterest: 2-4 AM and evening hours every day, 5 PM on Friday, 8-11 PM on Saturday