Social Media Automation: 5 Important Reasons to Use It

Has your social media strategy taken over your LIFE?

And, let me guess, you’re in SOCIAL MEDIA HELL? or OVERWHELM?social-media-automation

I know, it happens. Just sort of creeps up on us and before we know it, we’re drowning in social media overload. But the fact is, we still need to do it if we want our businesses to stay current and relevant.

Yep, with social media being one of the essential tools to marketing that it is today, we can find ourselves publishing, posting, and updating nearly every day.  And unfortunately, without proper strategy, managing our accounts can become a full-time job. Thankfully, I have found a few tools that have allowed me to manage my social media with ease, and allow me to devote my time to what truly matters; growing my business. So without further adieu, here is your essential guide to Social Media automation, and the 5 important reasons to use it.

1. Automation for audience insights

If you post on Twitter, but no one is around to see it; did you really Tweet? Raise your hand if in your early days of working as a social media marketer you frequently Googled “best times to post on social media”. Me too. But as it turns out, there is truly no one size fits all schedule for getting optimal engagement across your platforms.

Working with various companies in many different fields I often hear business owners swear by “the 8pm post”, or that their audience is only on Facebook at 10am, but prowls Instagram at 1am. And we begin to learn that there is no sure time frames for success. You have to get to know your audience, and when they will be around to not only see your posts, but also interact with them.

It is always advisable to research audience interaction times for your field of work, but by far the two most effective ways to sync up with your crowd are below:

  1. Trial and error:This way will take time, and will need to take place on an ongoing basis, but if you truly want to learn about your specific audience you will need to keep an eye on what’s working for you. Play around with times, types of posts, and platforms to see what formula is going to work best through your social media insights.
  2. Analyze your data: In addition to social media insights, try True Social Metrics. This social media automation allows you to lay out your feedback on social media on a time table creating an easy visual of what is truly working for you.

 

social-media-automation-bufferOnce you’ve determined the best times to post, and on which platforms, scheduling out your content will be a breeze.  I use and swear by Buffer, for so many reasons…( ask me). Some other  easy to use social media scheduling tools are Hootsuite,  SproutSocial,   HubSpot,  and Social Flow. Simply create awesome, relevant and engaging content, and plug it in.

The majority of the time we are using multiple social media platforms to post our usually original, sometimes curated, and always engaging content. And as important as it is to focus on each platform individually, it is just as important to establish relationships between them.

After all, they collectively represent one entity; you and your brand. Creating relationships and interaction between platforms is actually a lot easier than it may seem, but this mostly comes down to social media automation. There are many different tools like Zapier and IFTTT, that allow you to create “recipes” that will for example, automate a post to Facebook when you have posted to Instagram. These tools truly make cross-promoting take a fraction of the time and effort.

 

social-media-automation-ifttt

 2. Automation for content curation

It’s true, you don’t have to major in Art History anymore to become a curator. When posting to social media it is extremely important to create original, and specialized content, but you also need to show your audience that you are offering them the best content from the best sources.

Begin curating the best of the best from authoritative sites; are you posting for a physician? Publish a link from WebMd. Are you a fashion blogger? Post the latest fashion week coverage from Vogue.

Not only is this extremely sound advice, but since this is a blog on automation,  one of the most powerful content curation tools out there is Curata. Another great one, that I use from time to time: ScoopIt 

3. Automation for notifications

Yes, social media automation involves an array of tools that allows you to optimize your work schedule, and ensure that you’re posting efficiently and with success. However, we can’t altogether annihilate the human factor of social media. At the end of the day, we post to social media in order to increase engagement, and awareness with the end goal of creating relationships. When you create relationships with your audience, they will keep coming back for more.

For this reason I am encouraging you to set up your notifications accordingly so that when you get an important comment on your latest post, or a share, or ReTweet from your page you can reach back out and get a conversation going. Not only is this great for boosting presence on your social media, but you will also encourage other viewers of your posts to do the same.social-media-automation-notifications

Notifications, as we all know can be a double edged sword. Yes, you want to know when your audience is reaching out to you, but you don’t want your phone blowing up in the process. So now, once again running with this theme, here is the automated answer to notification success: Twitonomy. By using this tool, you can receive notifications at predetermined intervals to make sure they are not a constant source of distraction. Voila!

4. Automation for your value added content

Baby, your posts could never grow old; they’re Evergreen. Yes, it’s true – we tend to get caught up in the trending, now, and hot off the press topics that get a lot of click-throughs, but by tomorrow could no longer be relevant. But it is extremely important to remember our evergreen content. This is the content that whether you post it today or a year from now, your audience will find it informative, interesting, and relevant to them.

Instead of having to scroll back through your social platforms looking for that long ago posted piece of content gold, try automating the process through Tailwind. If you are involved in a visually centered business and post most of your content through Instagram and Pinterest, this tool is for you.

5. Automation in moderation

As extremely useful and time saving as social media automation is, it can never truly replace the wholly remarkable thing that is real-time human experience.  Sorry. But we mustn’t let the grass grow beneath our feet as we seek to find the most effective way to interact with our specific audience, and that involves ensuring a few points:

  1. We always give our content a personal touchTry not to simply cut and paste content, or frequently re-post the same non value adding information. People want to read, and will click through relevant and interesting content, and simply scroll through the rest.
  2. Don’t give your stamp of approval too freelyRemember that every time you post something for your company, or yourself, there is an unwritten assumption that you approve of any and all material that is attached to it. So for goodness sake, read before you post.
  3. Take something great, and make it your own, with your own CTA (call to action)Even when curating content, be sure to add your own summary of the amazing information you are providing. Add an interesting comment, ask a question to get your audience thinking, make reading your content an experience that your followers will want to come back for again and again.

 

OR…..you could just let us handle it all for you.

Successful social media marketing can be made so much more pleasant and simple by smart use of social media automation. As always, if you have any questions, leave a comment below and I will answer them or contact me. And be sure to let me know if you use any of these automation tools or if you have others that you love. 

 

 

 

 

 

The Step- by- Step Formula I use to Create Killer Traffic to My Blog Posts

blog formulaSo you’ve created an amazing blog post, some of the best content to hit your website yet, hit the publish button, and then waited for the traffic to start pouring in to see your brilliant creation.

Unfortunately, all you heard were crickets. Of course your best friend visited the site and said it was AMAZING. She’s your #1 fan :) But she’s also the ONLY fan…

Because you’re missing a critical piece of the blogging puzzle.

It doesn’t matter how great your content is. Without actively promoting your content, systematically, your blog is STILL going to be in nowheresville. Actually I take that back. Your work must be inspiring and must create great value otherwise even if it is promoted no one will read it. So the number 1 step is to of course create GREAT value. That being said….

* Content is only king if someone other than your mother can see it. *

And so, the formula of spending 80% of your day writing and 20% sharing and promoting must be given the big flip: It’s that same 80/20 rule turned on it’s head: You need to be spending 20% of your time creating great content and 80% of your time promoting it. I can hear the whiners now…. “But Suzen, it took me 2 entire days to create that blog post/write that article/create that video/create that sales page. I don’t have time to now go out and spend hours promoting it.”

If that’s the case, forgive my tough love: you probably don’t have time to build a successful online business and this article probably isn’t for you.

Or: you need an intern or a VA. See below.

But… if you want to multiply the visitors to your next blog post which means multiplying visitors to your website, which means…well you know what it means, then you’ll want to save yourself some time and follow these steps (which I wish someone would have shared with me when I first started blogging…it would have saved me 2 full years of trial and error) :

The step by step formula I use to increase traffic to my blog posts:

Ok, that’s a fancy way of saying first things first; make sure to do these things during your blog writing process:

  1. Internal link to relevant past blog posts or website pages.

Yours, not someone elses, although there is a place for that as well. Note that I do that throughout this post. It promotes “stickiness” and shows your “greater value” as you’re giving your readers a much richer experience, not to mention the fact that Google will rank the post higher with more internal links. Don’t over-do it though; that’s just obnoxious.

2. Use the free Yoast SEO WordPress Plug- In

Obviously this tip is for WordPress users. It’s a big one. Everyone should be using some sort of SEO plug-in to make sure they are optimizing their posts to the best of their ability. Since migrating to my new site and installing Yoast it’s been easy-peasy to make sure I’m dotting all of my SEO I’s and crossing its’ T’s. And it’s been working- my ranking has increased…a lot. You’ll learn the basics about SEO as well, which is info every website owner should have. Hit Publish. Now what?

How I Promote My Blog or Content. Every time. No exceptions. In this order:

3. OnlyWire :

One of the best tools I’ve found to quickly share your posts, video’s, pages, whatever, across the biggie bookmarking sites as well as your own social media platforms…all wrapped into one bundle. Once I write my blog the first thing I do is take that URL and plug it into Onlywire. Of course it will take some setting up as you’ll need to establish accounts with the bookmarking sites first (and whatever social media sites you want to get out to, if you haven’t already), but once that heavy lifting is done, it’s smooth sailing from there. Every update you make to your post-hit the onlywire button again to re-send, and there is no harm in re-posting it every few days as well. Onlywire has a scheduling feature as well so that you can pre-set your submissions.

WARNING, Will Robinson: as good as it is, as with any sharing tool remember that this is still only a tool. It can’t engage for you. I could if I chose to have Onlywire post to my Facebook groups and pages, as well as to my LinkedIn groups, but I don’t. Why?
Because it’s spammy. So much more valuable to post something with a personal comment attached. And on the flip side it can’t respond to any comments or likes…it’s a tool. A cool tool but a tool only meant for making life easy. You’ll still need to get into your social media sites and engage so as not to be perceived as the spamming blogger. So use it carefully and make sure that it’s not totally substituting for your presence.

4. Email it to your list:

You must, for so many reasons that are too long for me to get into here but anyone who follows me knows them by heart. I use AWeber- it’s simple, cheap (free actually up until a list of 500 I believe), quick, you can schedule it and walk away and I will clock you one if you neglect to do it.

5. Friendfeed:

A great site for blog-sharing, commenting and seeing other friends feeds, with big SEO value. Non-discriminatory anyone can set up their “feed” and share with their online friends.

6. Scoop.It

Scoop.it is my one-stop shop for getting fresh new traffic to EVERY blog post. A content aggregator, besides being fun to use, It has done amazing things for my page rank. Scoop.it is content curation at it’s best. With thousands of different topics and curators who collect their favorite content from around the web. And the best part is, you can suggest your favorite blogpost with the click of a button. You’ll see a link at the top of each Scoop.it pages that allows you to submit a suggested link. It takes all of 10 seconds to suggest your link. If the creator of that page decides to share your link, it gets published and any followers of that page also get notified (instant backlink and high-quality traffic). I recommend submitting your content to at least 10 Scoop.it pages for each new blog post you publish. There is also an option of adding a Scoop-it page to your site AS your blog, or as an ongoing news-feed. I’m looking into the possibility of doing it on my site now and will let you know you it works out. It could be a real no brainer solution for lazy tired folks who don’t like to blog or who simply have no time. Plus it’s constant fresh content. Great for SEO. So stay tuned.

7. Facebook groups and Facebook Sponsored Stories

Let’s focus on Facebook sponsored stories for a minute. Although not free, promoting your post through a sponsored story will enable your blog to get out to friends of friends. Targeting on Facebook has become much simpler and easier, and can be done without buying expensive ads. For more in depth info on how to laser focus your Facebook marketing check out Facebook Guru Amy Porterfield – I highly suggest taking one of her webinars, many are free. I’m in a number of Facebook groups that attract people who also might be interested in my content. And orgs that I’m a part of with like- minded tribe members. I always make sure to first ask nicely, and then once (and if) permission is granted, post my blog there, with an image and a nice note directed at the particular group. And then I pay attention and engage with people who comment or like. Cause you must.

8. Pingler.com and Ping-Omatic.com:

2 good sites for Pinging; yes pinging. What, you might ask is pinging? Not ping- ponging, pinging. When you ping your website is sending out a notification to other authority sites that there is fresh content at hand. Your website may does it automatically but I also do it manually to these 2 sites because Ana Hoffman wrote about it once and it’s worked beautifully for me.

9. E-Zine Articles:

If you are a blogger, share your blog with others, otherwise known as Article Marketing. You know, play nice, share a lot. (Now that we’re on another site we’re called an article. Whatever.)

10. Patch.com:

There are many sites out there, whether they be online hyper-locals like Patch, or “like” sites- a site where your content compliments-not duplicates-the other, who would be all too happy hosting your article or blog Because Patch is owned by AOL it has huge SEO juice and with a link back from your profile to your site will win you big exposure- not necessarily a link to your blog, but a link to your website and traffic never-the-less.

11. Repurpose your content. So many easy ways, but be mindful in re-purposing. One of Google’s updates has made it difficult to copy and paste content. It’s called ‘duplicate content’. There are work arounds- Read this

These traffic strategies are my inside secrets of what has worked best for me so far. I use them on each and every blog post, video or article that I write. Try them out and let me know what works
best for you. I know it seems like a lot– hire an intern! I have an awesome one who is eager to learn these techniques and see how my page rank and Alexa rank improves at each blog post. He will get a nice Christmas bonus if we keep going as we are now!

Keep your eye on the big picture here– that once folks have clicked the link to my blog to read my post from any of these outside sources, they are now on my site. What I have for them there after reading the awesome post is KEY to conversion. That’s for next time.

The point here is to provide massive value to your community – and it will deliver massive value back :)

Huge Traffic Strategy #5: Join Blog Communities and Link Roundups

omaginarium supercharge girlWhat to do when no one wants to post your epic high quality awesome guest blog post? Why post it to the all inclusive, just say YES non-judgmental blogging community. There is one out there, and they like you. Yes, they like you.

  1. 1. Post to Blogging Communities

There is a sea of blogging sites that are there for you and, as long as your blog is not total ca-ca, they will open their arms and welcome you into their warm bosom, giving you blog love, back links, and hopefully, if you treat them with respect, a large community of traffic back to your site, engaging with you. [Read more...]

Huge Traffic Strategy #4: Offsite Online Marketing

Did you follow me there? Don’t let the title confuse you: the bottom line is this: your website is not going to market itself. Just because you build it does NOT mean they will come.

Sorry Kevin Costner. I did love Field of Dreams but that was all it was—a dream.

Our Huge traffic Strategy #2- Create Great Content will only work to draw people in once they’ve already been to your site and have been blown away by your amazingly interesting (entertaining/mortifying/fill in the blank). The thinking here is that they will be coming back.

But how do you get them there in the first place?

We’ve reviewed 2 ways, earlier in our Huge Traffic Strategies Series already, but lets quickly review: [Read more...]

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