Information is in constant motion on social media. This is not surprising considering that 3.78 billion people worldwide are socially active, with Facebook alone having 2.85 billion monthly users, among the hundreds of social media platforms accessible by people. In this highly competitive and fast-paced landscape, how to stay on top of your game?
Say hello to automating your social media calendar.
Let’s say you want to post to Instagram on Sunday. This will require you to specifically sit with your laptop or mobile and upload your post according to the Instagram algorithm. Now, imagine having to post and update every post on your different social media accounts according to different times, along with fitting these tasks into your to-do list of the other 99 tasks. Sounds tedious, right?
Scheduling your social media posts ahead of time will help you stay organized, keep a record, plan ahead, and free some time for other tasks. Let’s look at how to schedule your posts on your social media platforms.
1. Examine Your Content and the Platforms
You can recognize the points in your brand which require improvements once you establish an overview of your current activities on different social media platforms. Auditing your networks is an essential step towards fine-tuning the type of content and its creation, thereby helping to increase your reach.
Having access to the latest data on your content strategy will assist in:
- Filtering out any bots and fake or inactive accounts following you;
- Knowing your follower base better by giving you insights into their demographics, likes, and dislikes;
- Accounting for the different roles your team members hold;
- Catching any gaps, inactivity, or potential refinement.
A wise step would be setting aside some time for checking your social media resources. Then you can feel confident that you’ll be approaching your new social strategy with the most up-to-date knowledge specific to your brand, your current followers/ subscribers, and your potential audience.
2. Research the Algorithms
Social media networks follow unique algorithms to optimize their platforms, give space to quality content, and filter out accounts performing poorly. So without knowing when to post, you may be falling into the ‘Spam account’ category of these algorithms.
Since these tech giants keep changing their algorithms, it is essential to stay up-to-date on their work. Organizations, companies, or small businesses attempt to respond to these updates to drive more on-site and off-site traffic and increase subscription sales.
Structuring and, most importantly, posting your social media posts under the algorithms will enable you to achieve these goals more efficiently. For instance, ‘Your Activity’ is one of the main signals in Instagram’s ranking of feed and stories.
3. Make a Content Library
Avoid cluttering your phone or laptop with future content collections and opt for Google Drive, Dropbox, or database software. Whatever service you choose, ensure that it:
- Has ample space for files with multimedia;
- Can be reached via your smartphone and your laptop;
- Can be shared with your team, along with ensuring your privacy and security;
- Offers links to files that you can attach to your calendar.
It’s almost as vital to building up your content collection as it is to set up your social media schedule. The less time you have to spend looking for resources, the more ideal it will be.
4. Establish Your Business-Specific Workflow
After gathering all your content, divide them according to their schedule, daily, weekly, and monthly. Count the following factors while doing so:
- The number of times you want to publish your content;
- The time of the day when you will post. It is dependent on the subject of social media’s algorithm and your brand’s performance statistics;
- The number of posts you want to provide your audience with;
- The amount of content to include in one post;
- How will the posts be handled before publishing, and who will approve them at the end?
- How much research is required per post?
- The team members who will be conducting research;
- The team members who will be creating the posts;
- What is the procedure for coming up with fresh content ideas and allocating and generating them?
Try recording your social media process in an easily accessible location once you’ve established it. Breaking down concepts and processes becomes increasingly useful as your team expands and takes on more responsibilities.
Once you have followed all the steps mentioned above, you have two options: either publish the posts manually – if you have a small social media account or opt for scheduling software that will post in place of you. The second option is better for those who need extra time for other important tasks.
Moreover, content may also require instant creation. For instance, sharing news and trending topics. In these instances, you may leave certain schedule slots free on the day of the event to fill in with selected material.