Last week we looked at content creation, and why you should consider outsourcing it to get it done right, and regularly.
Speaking of regular, let’s talk about schedules. How often should you be posting to your blog? Sharing your incredibly interesting and useful new content on Facebook or Twitter?
Taking the time to sit down and plan a content schedule for social media is not exciting. There are at least twenty other things you can think of doing that are definitely more stimulating than this. But there is nothing more important.
When there is a schedule you start to look forward to things (think sports or your favourite show), and miss them when they’re not there. The same can go for your fans, followers, readers, and customers. Provide them with great content on a regular basis, and they’ll look forward to it, warm up to your brand, and probably share it all with others.
A schedule or calendar allows you to plan, prepare, and take change of your online marketing. The schedule does not have to be chock-full, but it does have to be consistent. Once you set it out on paper, you will start to see how content can be shared across different channels (with a little tweaking), and how you can use one channel (i.e. Twiiter) to get people excited about something you’re offering somewhere else (i.e. a giveaway on Facebook).
So now you’re asking, which social media tools should I use, and how often? Use this list to schedule your initial tweets, posts, and emails. Monitor performance in the way of sharing, new fans or followers, and visits to your website, and adjust your schedule from there.
- Update Twitter at least once per day. Share news links, retweet other interesting content, or direct folks to your free content. Use a URL shortener before posting links so you can monitor performance.
- Update Facebook daily. Use the Insights Dashboard to see what content or status updates have the most Engaged Users and number of People Talking About This (see Facebook for an explanation of these metrics.
- If you use LinkedIn, update your status once a day. You can share news, or a post from your blog.
- Post to your blog weekly. Use a sharing tool (like Ping.fm or Hootsuite) to share that content on Twitter, Facebook, and others (this counts as an update!)
- Email your list once per month, to start. It doesn’t have to be a long newsletter; even a simple product update is valuable to your customers. Try out different times of day, and days of the week, to see where you get the best engagement.
Once your schedule is ready, give yourself enough breathing room every week to execute. You’ll soon find ways to share faster, schedule updates in advance, and monitor activity like questions and comments (try NutshellMail) to save time.
Next time: focus on fresh content – how to create an editorial calendar.