As much as this can come off sounding like one of those late night infomercials, do you find some days that there is never enough time to complete all of your social media activities? Are you becoming frustrated from having to log into multiple accounts to post the same content? Have you become frustrated of having to go from one online service, copy the content, and then send it to a different service to be processed? Well we have the solution for you; it is social media automation tools!
Your time is precious and you need to use it efficiently. Thankfully, there are tools on the market that can make your days easier! Two types of automation tools that you can use to help speed up your daily productivity are social media management tools and automation tools. Now, these tools are not the answer to have your entire online presence automated, but it comes pretty close to it. You still need to check back on a regular basis to make sure you are able to engage with your audience, but it is less frequent from jumping social media network to network.
Social Media Management Tools
Social media management tools allow you to integrate all of your social networks into a single service. HootSuite and Sprout Social are two of the best services on the market right now, which base their subscription models on the Freemium and Free Trial model.
Social Media Automation saves my time and our company budget for hiring extra-person. For Inbound Marketing Agency, our focus is to help developing high quality content and attract visitors using all possible channels. Facebook (with Facebook Ads) became no.1 source of traffic for our content for most of our customers.
Mike, Resonate Inbound Marketing Ageny
One of the most beloved social media management tools currently on the market is HootSuite
. According to HootSuite’s press release in January, “more than 75% of Fortune 1000 companies now use HootSuite for social media management, social marketing, social customer service, and social selling.” The pricing structure for HootSuite allows you to have a taste of their product by offering a free service with limited resources. Their Pro feature starts at $9 a month. Inside HootSuite, you are able to install 70 different free apps and there are 33 others apps that you can purchase for different social networks and third party services. Once all of the add-ons have amazed you, you will be able to start to schedule posts to your favourite social media network. You can even have HootSuite post your schedule posts automatically at the right time for you. Another feature that will help you automate your life is by having your RSS feed posts directly. Therefore, you can instantly post automatically all of your blog posts without needing to login. In addition, within the dashboard you can have all of your social networks and keywords streamed. Now you can utilize a single interface to reply and post on all of the networks and you can monitor keyword mentions! To top it all off, HootSuite has a URL shortening service built into it that allows you to track the type of clicks you are generating for each post.
2. Sprout Social
The next best thing on the market to manage all of your social media profiles into one service is Sprout Social. You can try Sprout Social as a Free Trial, but after 30 days you have to fork out $59 a month. Once in the dashboard you are able to schedule posts for a later time and you can setup an RSS auto post service. The downside is that you can only connect Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn accounts. Once you have one of four accounts connected, you can directly reply to any mentions.
Moving on to the best part of automation is having a neat tool that can do almost anything for you. The service If This Then That (IFTTT) and Zapier are a saviour for time management. The beauty of both services is the functionality of how a designated event occurs when an alert trigger happens.
1. If This Then That
The use of IFTTT is brilliant when it comes to integrating different app services when an event occurs. IFTTT is a free service that you can easily sign up in seconds. Once you login, you discover that there are THOUSANDS of user generated “recipes” for 112 different app services. A recipe is when an event trigger occurs which leads to an action being executed for a selected service. The networks that you can work with for your social media accounts are Bit.ly
, Blogger, Facebook, Flickr, Foursquare, Instagram, LinkedIn, SoundCloud, Tumblr, Twitter, Vimeo, WordPress, and YouTube. An example of such a recipe would be having IFTTT post an image on Instagram that you were tagged in on Facebook. The variety of actions that you can do in IFTTT is endless!
Just like the IFTTT service, Zapier
has multiples of apps connected together when an event occurs. However, there is only a 15 day Free Trial. Then you can move up into a paid plan that starts at $15 a month. In Zapier, there are Zaps for triggers and actions. As for app services available, there are 398 different apps that you can integrate with Zapier. Once you begin creating your Zaps, you will find that there are far more variables that can be used for a trigger and action in comparison to IFTTT. There is also an encouragement to be active in creating Zaps for different services by earning rewards for completing certain tasks.
There you have it, you are on your way to becoming a social media Jedi! With great power comes great responsibility. Be sure to organize your automations to work cohesively to help you generate insightful information for yourself and your audience. When it comes to scheduling content, try not to go too overboard on consistent posts ever couple of minutes. The best trick for Twitter, when it comes to scheduling posts, is having your new blog posts tweeted every 6 hours to help expose it to different time zones.