Whether you’re showing homes, booking appointments, selling policies or managing someone’s finances, extensive free time is a luxury few of us get to experience. For many business owners who find themselves overscheduled, social media marketing is the first thing to be set aside, but it shouldn’t be. These five social media to-dos can help you prioritize this important marketing task without feeling overwhelmed.
With nearly 30% of the total time people spend online being spent on social media, it’s no secret that maintaining an active online presence is important for business owners. But how can they keep the lights on with social media when their time is limited? If you do a little planning you can build an effective online presence with minimal effort.
Here are five ways to hit essential social media to-dos without spending too much time:
1. Prioritize Your Pages
Stop questioning whether or not your business needs to be on social media (it does) and start considering which platforms are best to utilize. Juggling ten different accounts will make managing your content difficult and take a considerable amount of time, so zeroing in on what’s important is a crucial first step.
Social’s “Big Three” – Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn – are the best networks to start with as a business owner. By prioritizing these three sites alone you join a community of more than 2.2 billion monthly active users! Remember: you don’t have to be everywhere; you need to be in the right places.
Feeling like you want to broaden your horizons a bit? Your business might benefit from a beautiful Instagram page, or you can take your customers behind the scenes with Snapchat. There are plenty of options available to you.
2. Check Your Notifications and Engage
As simple as it might sound, the easiest way to keep your social presence in motion is to stay up-to-date with your notifications. Checking your notifications will keep you informed about what people are liking, commenting on and sharing and allows you to engage right back.
— Tommy Mello (@realtommymello) January 6, 2018
There are few things worse for a customer doing research on a business than seeing social pages covered in cobwebs. If you’re staying engaged regularly, customers will know you’re active even if you don’t have the time to post original content as often as you’d like.
See somebody interacting with a lot of your posts? Here’s an opportunity to reach out and establish a stronger relationship. Don’t underestimate the insight that notifications give you and your business.
3. Combine Original and Curated Content
Don’t have time to write about all kinds of original content? Relax — no one expects you to. Part of being an effective social media user is to share content you find from other sources that your followers may enjoy.
Take a moment to follow news sites, industry-adjacent companies, celebrities, thought leaders and anyone else you or your audience may be interested in. Then, when you log in, your feeds and timelines will be full of content you can repurpose on your own page.
When writing your own content, keep it varied. If you like to promote your services or want to highlight special offers, aim for an 80:20 content ratio: 80 percent interesting, non-sales content, and 20 percent business information about your company and its services. When you over-promote yourself, your followers will tune you out.
4. Learn to Schedule Ahead
Here’s the best piece of advice anyone is going to give you about managing your social media with a busy schedule: automate.
On that rare day when you have an extra 30 or even 60 minutes, you can build a queue of content that will keep your social media looking active for weeks to come. We always have content ready to fly thanks to our Buffer account.
There are several services available online to help you plan, schedule and automate posting across all of your social networks. You’ll need a little time to get familiar with how your scheduler works, but it’s all worth it when your pages run seamlessly. Here are a few programs we recommend:
5. Pro Move: Go Live!
Exploring a trade show? Working on a new product? Celebrating a coworker’s anniversary? Sometimes the things that make us too busy to work on social content are exactly the things our audience would love to be a part of. Maybe it’s time to go live.
Many of the social networks we use have live video options; you just have to do a little testing to make sure you’re comfortable. There’s live capabilities on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Real-time video super popular, and can give your customers a little “slice of life” perspective is the human element they need to love your brand.
Not sure live video is right for you? A simple photo of behind-the-scenes moments of your life and business can have the same effect. Don’t be afraid to show personality so long as it fits the image you’re creating for your brand.
We’re all busy and time is precious, but important business tasks like social media can’t be overlooked. Sites like Facebook and Instagram are here to help you connect with your consumers, build brand recognition and grow your business. A little effort goes a long way, and these five social media to-dos are a perfect place to begin.
And remember, if you need a little help, OutboundEngine is here to do it for you.
Last Updated 1/19/18; Originally published 11/10/16.