Social media is fun but can be very time consuming. Learning ways to maximize each of your efforts will make everything you do more successful. While everyone should create their own special social media mix that will help them meet their goals, there are some ways that you can maximize your time by processing things so you can get on to other things.
Social media is not rocket science, however there are a few tricks and tips that can make things really start to hum for you.
1. Include a call to action when you post
Posting something fantastic with a call to action will encourage engagement and you will get positive results. If you post and no one comments, likes, or shares why are you doing it?
From Dan Zarella, “Traditional marketers and sales people have known for years and years that if you want someone to take a specific action, you have to actually ask them to take that action. But for some reason when we made the shift to social media, it suddenly became “uncool” to use calls-to-action.
I’ve conducted research into social calls-to-action across multiple channels for the past few years and found that in every place I’ve looked they produce increased action rates.”
Experiment to find language that works for you and fits with what you share on social media. A few examples of effective calls to action:
- Share a comment below if…
- What do you think about XX, share your thoughts in the comments…
- Tag a friend who you think would be interested in this…
- Double tap if you…
You do need to be careful on Facebook since they changed the rules about specifically asking for a like, comment of share on a post.
Action: Use calls to action to genuinely engage your community in conversations.
2. Use Social Bro for Twitter
Social Bro is a Twitter powerhouse tool. I use it once a week to help build my Twitter presence and tweak what I'm sharing and when. Even if you share great content continuously on Twitter, your numbers won't just magically grow. It takes more effort than just sharing and responding to tweets.
A few of my weekly Social Bro tasks
- Run the best times to tweet report (share to Buffer or Hootsuite)
- Follow back new followers
- Find new followers for specific niches
- Create and monitor detailed reports about your community, define the information you want to analyze and determine the frequency of the report. You can set these up and they'll run for you daily, weekly, or monthly.
Action: Focus on analytics once a week or month, don't waste your time checking every day.
3. Use annotations on your YouTube videos
If you're creating video content, you know that there are a lot of moving pieces to getting a video shot, edited, and uploaded. Don't drop the ball and forget to add annotations.
“Annotations are clickable text overlays on YouTube videos. Annotations are used to boost engagement, give more information, and aid in navigation. Be inventive!”
- Ask viewers to like, favorite or share a video.
- Ask a specific question to enhance viewer engagement.
- Make it easy for viewers to subscribe right from your videos.
- Link to other videos in the series.
- Make areas of your video clickable and interactive.
- Link to your social media presence
More from Kristi Hines
Action: Grow your subscriptions, sales, or social media by making it easy for people to click.
Buffer says, “Buffer makes your life easier with a smarter way to schedule the great content you find. Fill up your Buffer at one time in the day and Buffer automagically posts them for you through the day. Simply keep that Buffer topped up to have a consistent social media presence all day round, all week long.”
I absolutely love Buffer and they also have a great blog with social media tips. Apps, extensions and extras: iPhone app, Buffer for Chrome extension, Twitter and the list goes on.
The easiest way to use Buffer is to load the Chrome app and then each time you find great content, Buffer it. This will spread our all your content to the schedule that you choose.
Action: Save time by batch processing your content curation and spread throughout the week.
5. Scheduling via TweetDeck
Only have a little window of time on social media? Don’t bombard your stream with comments and posts. Use the scheduling features to space out the thanks, comments and RT’s. That’s much friendlier and keeps your social media rocking.
Action: Check the tools you're using to see if there's a better way to use your blocks of time by spreading out your concentrated efforts.
6. Ditch it
If you are doing something that is getting zero RT’s, comments, likes or +1’s, ditch it and do something else. You know that old saying, ‘the definition of crazy is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result?’
Action: Be smart and don't waste time on things that don't work.
7. Set Boundaries
From my colleague Rebekah Radice, “Nothing can suck up your day like social media when it’s not managed. In order to do away with time sucking activities, you must set boundaries.
Determine how often you’ll check each social network and then track your time using free tools like FocusBooster.
FocusBooster is an app based on the Pomodoro Technique, a time management system designed to instantly improve productivity.”
How it works with social media:
- Choose the social networks you will visit.
- Determine what your goals are for each network and have content ready to share.
- Set the timer for 25 minutes.
- Focus on your task (s) for 25 minutes and then shut your social networks down.
- Give yourself a 5-minute break.
- Move on to your next money-making activity.
Action: Don't waste your time on social media. Period.
8. Variety is the spice of life
Keep your social media fresh, interesting and engaging. This will keep you interested as well. And let’s face it, if you aren’t interested in what you are sharing, no one else will be either.
Action: Stale content stinks. If you need a break, take one but don't post just to post.
9 . Good old social skills
Don’t forget the basics! Say hello, thank you and nice to meet you. Everyone appreciates good manners and this leads to further engagement.
10. Guest post
Writing guest posts helps you find a whole new audience for your message and gives you great content to repurpose on your own blog later. Double whammy of goodness!
I've written guest posts for Social Media Examiner, 12 Most, and Maximize Social Business.
Action: Gain a new audience by guest posting.
11. Maximize your profile data
Help more awesome people find you. I see many people without complete bios and no links to their social media presence. You need to help people find you and make it easy for them to follow you.
Use keywords in your bios so you'll surface when people search for accountants, writers, or whatever your niche is.
Action: Show people you're worthy of a follow.
12. Borrow these time-saving tech tips
13. Create a list of go-to articles to reshare
From Kevan Lee at Buffer, “Sharing a post more than once helps it reach an audience that might not have seen it the first time (and with impressions hovering near 10% or less for most accounts, chances are that a minority of your followers saw it the first time around). You can create this go-to list in a number of ways.
1. Use a separate account in Buffer to save your best-performing updates.
Drag them from your analytics into the queue of the separate account. Turn off the schedule for this second account so that the updates site in a sort of holding pattern. Then, in a pinch, you can re-buffer any of these posts to your main account.
2. Export your analytics from Buffer, Twitter, or Facebook, and mark the posts that performed well.
Add them into a separate spreadsheet or worksheet, and pull from this list when you need a new update – or upload your greatest hits using the Bulk Buffer method mentioned above.”
Action: Create a go-to list of stellar content.
14. Batch process your images
When you're in creative mode, create a batch of images for your Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest posts. It will save you time to have a stock pile of great things to share and you can schedule them out for the week on your editorial calendar.
Action: Create a batch of images to save time.
I hope you'll give a few of these ideas a try. I'd love to hear what works for you and how you maximize your social efforts!
Alisa Meredith says
Peg, I just tried your social warfare plugin for Pinterest sharing and wow! How cool is that??? Great tips here, too. I haven’t tried Social Bro, but now I have to check it out.
Peg Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick) says
Pinterest sharing perfection, eh?
Jeff Sieh says
Great article Peg. Going to test out Social Bro this week.
I’d also add that if your going to take the time to create a great video, go ahead and film a second ending or call to action for your video. Annotations for YouTube won’t work on Facebook. And since you want to upload those videos natively to FB to perform better a second ending or CTA is well worth the time!
Peg Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick) says
Good tip – thanks Jeff!
Timely post Peg (for me). Thanks for sharing your tips. I use SocialBro only for follow/unfollow option, but I´ll have a look at the rest of the options.
And thank you for using my tweet in number 5! :))
That´s interesting. I haven´t thought of scheduling my RTs and comments.
I love Buffer too and I want them to expand and include more options, so I can use them and them only. 🙂
I also like the re-buffer option for the top posts. Very useful.
Peg Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick) says
So happy you liked it, Corina!
Dharam Bindra says
Good articles full of information but if one go out to play a game and most of time is spent to know rules. When’ll one get to play really in the field.
Gary Sevounts says
Great article, Peg. I like that you provide both strategic advice and specifics/tools. Buffer and tweetdeck are good. I used TweetCaster Pro on my Android. Topsy for research. Will check out Social Bro.
Julie Connor, Ed.D. says
Thank you for the great information, Peg! I just purchased Buffer’s Awesome Plan. There are many resources out there – I’m grateful to have an arrow to an important tool.
No one does social media quite like you do!