Would you like to have more free time and still maintain a presence on social media? You can with some strategic planning and automated posting.
Before you read any farther, let me clarify a few things. I am not encouraging you to send automated messages your friends, fans, and followers will consider junk/spam nor am I advocating pitching your products or services 24/7, to everyone’s annoyance.
Instead, plan for a balance of live, in-the-moment postings (remember the social part of social media?) and automated tweets and posts that will free you to do other things. Some examples:
• You are offering a teleseminar and the recording will be available to anyone who signs up.
Automated: people 12 time zones away may not be willing or able to attend the live call but they may be interested in your topic. Schedule a series of automated tweets to publicize your event at a time these people will be awake and online. You can also pre-schedule the “we’re starting in 1 hour” and “we’re kicking off the teleseminar in 5 minutes” tweets so you don’t forget anything (like the link) in the busy moments right before your call.
Live: encourage listeners to use your #hashtag to tweet about your key points. Thank attendees in real time. Answer questions live on Twitter using #hashtag and include #FB and/or #in for added reach.
• You’re heading to an intense week-long conference.
Automated: popular tips from your archives, links from scheduled blog posts and articles, and any reminders for events that need to go out in your absence.
Live: if information is not confidential, share nuggets of conference information your fans, followers, and friends can use as soon as you post.
• You have a family member who needs you with her/him right now and for an undetermined amount of time in the future
Automated: as much as you can so your business doesn’t suffer.
Live: people who have built relationships with you will want to hear how you all are doing so post short, live updates when you can.
There are a number of tools available for automating your social media content.
• Ping.fm and Hootsuite let you post to multiple social media sites for free.
• SocialOomph lets you schedule tweets for free. As mentioned earlier, you can extend your reach by adding #FB and #in to the end of a tweet OR you can pay for the professional version’s added features.
• EzineArticles will post when they publish your latest article if you give them permission.
• WordPress will post a link to your latest blog post if you use Publicize.
Go ahead–plan to automate some of your social media content so you have time to then do what you love best.