Learning how to save time and minimising work loads is a no-brainer for any business. When it comes to managing social media campaigns, using these tips can be beneficial in order to free up time for other activities and keep your business streamlined.
Save time by getting ahead of yourself
A common technique is to plan ahead and complete non-time sensitive work in batches. Every time you finish one task and start the next, you will have a period of downtime. By minimising the amount of time between switching tasks, you can reduce the overall campaign time significantly and improve the total quantity of work done.
Rather than spending time each week creating content to use for your online marketing, try and come up with non-time sensitive material you can use over the next month. Depending on what type of campaigns you are running or what type of product or service you are marketing, this can save huge amounts of time. Finding a batch of related images that you can post on Facebook or Twitter over the next month is unlikely to take much longer than finding the one image you can post now.
Save time by using a social media dashboard
Social media dashboards like Hootsuite and SproutSocial allow you to monitor and manage numerous social media accounts all within one screen. Being able to visualise and control a number of different streams of information in one place will save time by not having to login to each account separately. Social media management tools like these also typically have additional functionality to the original social platforms. Hootsuite, for instance, can provide some good analytics features that Twitter itself does not offer users.
Save time by scheduling your updates
There are two huge advantages of being able to schedule your social media content. The first expands on my advice about planning ahead. Using a service that allows you to schedule updates for times when you are not online allows you to setup posts in batches and achieve continuity in your marketing efforts. This does not mean that that's it. Hardly. But it does mean you can now spend the rest of your social media time on what counts - speaking to people and building relationships and networks.
The second big advantage is the ability to schedule posts to go out when they are likely to have the most impact. By posting things at different times of the day you can start to work out which times are the most effective for different types of content, for each platform. Hootsuite now even has an auto-scheduling tool which saves even more time than having to figure it out yourself.
Maximise each idea to save time
Making the most out of every idea can be hard, but knowing how to build and expand upon each idea is where you can really add value to your campaigns. If you are sponsoring a local event, you may think to post some pictures or videos on Facebook afterwards. This should not be the end of it. Building that one event out into a number of social media updates, blog posts and associated marketing activities is key. The following list provides some ideas:
- Announce you are going
- Announce you are sponsoring
- Share information about the event
- Ask who else is going
- Say where you are going to be and when you will be there
- Promote competitions (if any)
- Post your arrival
- Highlight what is happening
- Post pictures
- Tell people who you have been talking with
- Share any videos
- Express your feelings about how the event is going
- Post an event summary
- Post remaining media
- Say your thank you's
- Guest post for people you met at the event
- Follow up on new contacts by getting connected and introducing yourself
Save time by using blogging, social media and email marketing as one
Looking for ways in which one bit of content can be used across a number of different marketing channels can save time and reduce the overall workload. Competitions can be a great method of building a social media following, but they can also be used in a variety of other marketing channels. Using email and print marketing to promote competitions, while writing a blog post to announce the winner, couples your efforts to reduce time. This can ultimately extend to all areas of marketing. By using each marketing channel to support and complement the others, you can greatly increase the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.
Save time by following similar businesses
Following other businesses social media activities can be another great time saver. Provided they are not a competing company in the same location, using your competition as a resource can be rewarding, either for inspiration or even to share their posts directly. If they tweet a link to a good blog post or recent news article that their followers are likely to be interested in, chances are it may interest your followers to.
Remember, every business is different...
These are a few tactics you could use to save time running an effective social media campaign. One thing to keep in mind is that every business and every person is different, and there may be many other ways to improve aspects which are more relevant to you. If you find a really effective strategy that saves you a chunk of time managing social media, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.