Automation is a highly contentious topic online due to its history of cringe-worthy direct messages that dissuade the recipient from continuing to follow the feed or engaging in contact whatsoever with the company. However, when handled properly automation can be a valuable tool to creating a personalized experience that is indistinguishable from traditional outreach endeavors to the outside observer. Before determining if social media automation is right for you, consider the following:
- Why do you want to automate? Is it due to limited time availability or history of forgetting to send blog posts out?
- How do you spend your social media time? If you’re constantly refreshing your Twitter feed, then automation may free up time and help you focus on the bigger picture.
- Do you have the time to check social media? Automation cannot replace active management, however, it can lessen the time spent on it.
Why Social Media Automation May Be Right for You
Automation is a scheduling of new posts and promotions on record schedule and keyword alerts for unplanned opportunities. Here’s why you should consider automation for your social media endeavor:
- Saves You Time – Stop having to take time away from working with clients to post already created material. Automation enables you to focus on furthering your business.
- Eliminates Repetitive Tasks – For tasks that you do every day an automation rule can step in and eliminate the chore. From sharing content to compiling social media reports, automation can save you time and stress every day.
- Enhances Freedom with Other Posts – If you have a series of posts already scheduled to go out, you will be able to readily concentrate on addressing customer feedback or market changes that are worthy of note.
What Can Go Wrong With Social Media Automation
If you fail to carefully monitor your networks, then community engagement may suffer as a result. You have to be careful with automated messaging, as you don't want messages you are pushing out to be perceived by potential or current customers as being spam or unrelated to their original question.
One of the most frequently made mistakes is the ill placement of certain fields like usernames, especially right in the middle of a tweet. Another major issue is not including a mechanism to turn off the posts in case of emergencies.
Use Automation With Your Social Media Posts
There are a variety of ways to automate your postings, though the goal is to always strive for maximum engagement by consistently providing fresh content when your audience is online.
- Evergreen Content – If you have content that is still relevant, but posted some time ago, you can have automation tools repost it when it will make the maximum impact possible.
- Time of Day – Ensure that your content is posted consistently by having a schedule put into place well in advance.
- Utilize Multiple Platforms – If you are sharing the same content across multiple social media platforms, leverage automation tools to save time and hassle.
By taking a few hours each week to schedule out postings in advance you’ll be able to identify gaps in your content calendar and increase your ability to actively engage with your community without worrying about overall schedules or what is coming next.
Use Automation With Your Reports
Utilizing social media reports to track branded keywords and community engagement enables you to quickly and readily obtain the data needed for future social media outreach endeavors. An automated report will enable you to make analyzing current trends a part of your weekly schedule and thus reduce the likelihood of you are your marketing team being surprised by major changes on the monitored platforms.
Put Your RSS Feeds On Automatic
By leveraging tools like IFTTT, you will be able to not only automatically update your RSS feeds, but personalize them to ensure that they stand out from the crowd! From internal blogs to material published by other companies, you can readily collect a wide variety of material and offer it through an automated RSS feed.
Make Content Creation Automatic
With tools like Feedly, it is possible to quickly obtain a large amount of content that you have to carefully sift through before sharing with those in your social media community. Use automation tools to sift content based upon keywords, shares, or popularity in order to determine which material you should utilize in your own social media endeavors.
Automate Your Answers
Major social media networks like Facebook or Twitter enable companies to create away messages that can be automatically sent during specific times of the day. This means you can set up support hours that can direct the public to your FAQ page while promising them that you will be in touch as quickly as possible. With the right script or chat bot, you may even notice a decline in the need to utilize your support services by better utilization of standard answers that can be obtained without having to speak to a live customer service representative.
What You Should Always Keep In Mind With Social Automation
Social automation can be as tricky as any other facet of social media outreach. It can save you time on repetitive tasks and enhance customer service, though it also has the capability of reducing the effectiveness of your social media account by reducing end-user trust if set up poorly. Creating the most effective automation strategy requires experimentation, data analysis, and a willingness to accept feedback from the community at large.
Before you get started, ask yourself what you do every day that can be automated, and make the transition at a piecemeal pace. That is the most effective way to ensure you do not overextend yourself and lose the trust that you have been building with your social media profiles.