Social media doesn’t turn off. You need to keep your accounts continually active to keep the interest of your followers. Automation can be s helpful tool for this if you use it right. Get it to work the way you need by knowing how to implement social media automation correctly.
Using social media automation
Your first consideration with social media automation is when you should and shouldn’t use it. A useful rule of thumb here is to automate only the parts that do not directly interact with your audience:
- Updating RSS feeds: Review the formatting of your feeds before initiating the automation process.
- Content curation: Determine a suitable ratio for sharing different types of content with your audience to keep their interest.
- Non-urgent content: Create a schedule of all your non-time sensitive social media posts to streamline your publishing process.
- Sections of your sales funnel: Automating activities like capturing leads from tweets, responses to inquiries, and feedback will help efficiency.
By having a clear idea where you want to implement automation, you can better structure it to suit your social media strategy. This tweet, for example, is used for calling attention to a new article posted on on the brand’s website.
— RIVA RACING (@rivaracing) August 24, 2017
The tweet features a direct call to action followed by a link to the indicated article. To fulfill its purpose of enticing people to click, the tweet also feature a descriptive and engaging image. This is an easy post to automate.
Scheduling your automated posts
You shouldn’t automate all your channels at the same time. Your audience will lose interest if they see your social media accounts posting the same automated content. Instead, decide what channel you would automate and which ones to personally handle.
Also plan out how to link your channels to each other for automated postings. Take the differences between channels into consideration when deciding how to link them. Tweeting a link from Instagram, for instance, shows only that link and not the image, as seen here.
🇨🇦T🎃R🎃NT🎃🇨🇦❗️BRING UR KATY HALLOWEEN COSTUME 🅰️ GAME TO THE SHOW ON TUESDAY, HALLOWEEN NIGHT &… https://t.co/0LqMSfOJiQ
— KATY PERRY (@katyperry) October 30, 2017
Meanwhile, on Instagram, it looks like it should:
🇨🇦T🎃R🎃NT🎃🇨🇦❗️BRING UR KATY HALLOWEEN COSTUME 🅰️ GAME TO THE SHOW ON TUESDAY, HALLOWEEN NIGHT & I WILL PICK 10 PEOPLE (and their +1's) OUT OF THE AUDIENCE (and with a little help from some friends for seats I can't reach) FOR AN AFTER-SHOW HANG, SELFIES INCLUDED! CAN'T WAIT TO SPEND ONE OF MY FAV NIGHTS WITH YEW ALL IN TORONTO AND SEE YOUR L👀KS 🍁🇨🇦
You can’t simply automate this, you will have to step in and manually add the photo to Twitter from Instagram. Unless you’re Katy Perry, and then you can do whatever you want…
Choosing the right automation tool
When choosing a social media automation tool, consider the level of automation you want to implement. Are you simply looking for a means to schedule your posts, or do you also need to curate other content? Take into account how these tools facilitate cross-posting from one channel to another. This will help you better map out the implementation of the tool you choose.
Some of the popular automation tools that you can consider are:
- Buffer: The tool lets you determine the optimized times for social media postings and curate high-performing content.
- HootSuite: This connects to more than 35 different social media channels from a single dashboard.
- Sumo: Sumo has a powerful analytics tool that you can use to keep track of audience interactions.
- Likeable Hub: This is geared towards small business owners, and can help you discover trending topics and content ideas for your specific industry.
- PowerPost: Allows you to easily manage content from a central hub, as well as edit them to suit a specific channel.
- Socedo: Easily discover the keywords that are relevant to your sales funnels. This helps you better capture leads from your social media conversations.
Each of these tools has a specific purpose to play in your social media automation strategy. Choose the tools which best match your goals.
Creating your automated social media content
The success of your social media automation efforts hinges on the quality of content your system sends out. Follow these tips:
- Your automated content needs to match the tone of your content style. You don’t want your automated content to stand out from the rest of your content.
- Personalize each piece of automated content to better connect to and engage your audience.
- Do not simply copy and paste content from one social channel to the next. Customize them to better suit the platform.
- Realize that different types of content work on different platforms, and make plans to take advantage of those differences.
Once your automated content gets published, it needs to be more visible to better draw the attention of your audience. Use tools like our Twitter Auto Engagements to provide that push to each piece of content from your automated channel. Since the service is itself automated, you don’t have to constantly monitor its implementation, giving you more time for other projects.
You can also fill your automated content schedule by recycling and repurposing old content. Use your automation tools to go through your published content and find the popular ones. Republishing and repurposing these older posts will give them another boost and attract new readers.
When repurposing social media content, update each piece with new information. This will keep the content relevant. Also, schedule the release of repurposed content to match relevant trends to better catch the attention of your audience. This tweet from journalist Miriam Porter could potentially be automated to coincide with the trend that her article is about.
— Miriam Porter (@MiriamRiverP) February 4, 2016
Aside from your own content, you can also automate the curation of content from external sources. Sharing content coming from other people not only helps keep your social media pages active, but also helps you connect with other content creators. Program your automation tools with the right hashtags and keywords to find the best content.
Ensuring the integrity of your automation
Since your social media automation relies on the content that you input into it, it will only be as effective as that content. Thoroughly review each piece of content you create before scheduling them for posting. Look out for errors that can potentially lead to embarrassment.
It would also help you to anticipate other areas where your social media automation might fail. The triggers that you set your tools to curate and post content, for instance, can get compromised. This can lead to unwanted content being posted on your channels. Coca-Cola had to deal with such a situation when the automated tweeting system for its 2015 Super Bowl campaign was hijacked to send out Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf in the ASCII art it generated. The brand had to shut down the automation.
You need to create safeguards, and ways to evaluate the performance of your automation. Review results to see if it is able to keep up with the level of engagement generated by your non-automated posts. Based on the comparison, refine your overall automation strategy to make it more effective at engaging the audience.
Bring in the bots to help promote your brand on social media
Using social media automation can help a lot in maintaining your social media presence. Implement using it by:
- Knowing when to use it: Carefully choose the activities and channels that you want to automate. This will help you more effectively incorporate automation into your overall social media strategy.
- Creating the right content: Plan content that will be fed to your automated tools to keep it in sync with the other pieces of content you release.
- Providing ample support: Ensure that your automation is running smoothly by regularly monitoring its performance. Be ready to give it human support if needed.
Follow these reminders and automated tools will help boost your brand’s presence while you are away.