Social Media Planning, Writing, and Scheduling Doesn’t Have to Be Stressful
I don’t know about you, but if I don’t organize my thoughts, create a plan, and write my social media ahead of time, I fail to even do it. (As a business owner, did I just admit this?) Sadly, yes, but I’ve found a system where I can be consistent and check it off my list. I want to share my three stress-free tactics to help you reach your goals and create your raving fans!
- Choose your social media platform(s).
- Schedule your social media posts.
- Engage with your audience.
Remember, KISS? Keep It Simple Silly! Let’s go.
1. Choose your social media platform(s).
What social media platforms are you using consistently? I’m talking for business, not personal. We can all fall into the rabbit hole of personal use, but we’re in business to make money so being intentional where you spend your time on social media for business is crucial. If you aren’t consistently using all the platforms you’re on, pick one to start with and be consistent writing and engaging on the platform for three months. Then, when you’re comfortable and have your system in place, add another. When you take this one step, you’ll feel a tremendous amount of pressure released. Find out where your “people” hang out and start there. Is it LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram?
Our book club read, Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk and one of the best lessons we took away from the book is your content for each social media site needs to be native to the site where you’re posting. Some social media sites lend themselves to be better at growing your audience while others might lead to more sales. Be sure you understand these differences so you do not put the wrong strategy for success on the wrong site.
As you are writing and planning your social media, keep a list of hashtags specific to you, your brand, your industry, and if you’ve developed one specifically for your business use it every single time you post. People will begin to recognize the correlation between the hashtag and you. You never know what conversation might start by doing this small step. Two hashtags we used (and are going to start using again) are #WriteYourWay and #MoreThanWords.
2. Schedule your social media posts.
You’ve written your social media for the month (or week) what’s next? Schedule it to go out to the world. Where you ask? Yes, it’s great to post in “real” time but as entrepreneurs (even when we have a team working with us), it’s hard to go in and post in “real” time four or five times a day. I do suggest making an effort to post once in “real” time each day and at the same time each day. This creates continuity and a schedule you can follow for yourself. Put it in your calendar and do it!
There are several social media management platforms you can choose: Hootsuite, Buffer, Sprout Social, and more. Whichever platform you choose to use depends on your budget, the platform’s ease of use, or do they provide analytics you can review. Facebook scheduling for posts is free but I find it cumbersome as it’s not as easy as it used to be, but I do use it when necessary.
Create a content calendar so you can work ahead and know where and when you are posting your content. Below is a sample of one of our days of content and we do it all in Excel. We create a new sheet for each month of the year and a sheet to organize our hashtags. You could also organize your content in your Google or Outlook calendar. Use a different color for each platform or type of post. The point is to keep it simple and find out what works for you.
3. Engage with your audience.
Posting on social media alone doesn’t mean people will automatically follow you (plus, you want the right people to follow you). When you engage with people who have written on your post(s), write a comment back to them. (Hint: a thumbs up or a heart doesn’t help your analytics. Also, anytime you answer one of your posts or someone else’s with an angry face or a negative type of emoji, the analytics decrease and less people will see those posts!)
When I talk about engaging, I’m not just talking about your posts. Engage with other people’s posts. Answer a question or comment on a post. It shows you’re interested in what they have to say. And be consistent. Talk about falling into a rabbit hole; again, put a timer on your computer or phone and spend 15 minutes in the morning, 15 before lunch, and 15 at the end of the day. Or 10, if it’s all the time you have. If you don’t, before you know it, you can waste an hour or more.
Find one influencer in your field and respond to their post(s) every single day. When you’re comfortable doing this, add another influencer and engage with their posts too. It may take time, but people will start to notice.
For more information on making social media success work for you, Peter’s blog has some great tips. Let me know which of these three stress-free social media tactics you’re going to put to use. I look forward to hearing from you.