Christmas is almost here which means plenty of you in the retail industry need to put your feet up, even if it’s just one day off! However, the online world never sleeps which means your social media sites and websites are working 24/7. So let me tell you about four little tools which you can use to help put your social media on autopilot these holidays … well at least the posting portion.
If you have a Facebook Business Page, Facebook Scheduling is one of my favourite tools because it’s free and it can be used from within Facebook. All you need to do is type in your status update and click on the little clock icon below the text to schedule the post for the desired date and time. You can add an image or a link before you schedule it.
If you need to locate your scheduled posts, you’ll find them in your pages activity log:
If you’d like to learn more about Facebook scheduling and view a ‘how to’ video clip, take a look at one of my earlier blog posts about Facebook Scheduling.
If you have a Twitter and Linkedin account why not use Buffer to schedule your posts. Buffer is a free application which you connect to your social media accounts. Once you add the Buffer bookmarklet to your internet browser you can ‘buffer’ any content that you find on the web by simply clicking on the Buffer app icon. Buffer will automatically grab the content ready for you to post, alternatively you can edit the text and fill up your Buffer schedule.
Your Buffer account will post at predetermined times and days which can be changed in your user settings. Buffer also allows you to post to Facebook, however be mindful that when you use Buffer for Facebook, your status updates will appear in the newsfeed with the text “via Buffer” underneath them like this:
For Google+ accounts you can use another free tool called Hootsuite. Hootsuite allows you to schedule your Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and Linkedin status updates all from a single account. If you manage multiple social media accounts you can upgrade to a paid version when you run out of profiles. Hootsuite is similar to Buffer in that you need to connect your individual accounts and add the bookmarklet (Hootlet) to your internet browser. Click on the icon to fill up your Hootsuite schedule from websites that you visit or you might like to create your own status updates and add images.
For your Pinterest account, I highly recommend that you try out Pingraphy. With Pingraphy you can upload pins or schedule pins from websites. Simply sign in to Pingraphy using your Pinterest account and add the pingraphy bookmarklet to your web browser. Once you’ve added it you can select Pingraphy whenever you want to schedule a pin. You can choose the image, the board, the text and send it out when you know your followers are using Pinterest.
Once you’ve scheduled your posts for your most important social media sites you can sit back and relax knowing that you don’t have to make a post on a certain day and time. I do however highly recommend that you check back in on your social networking sites to see what conversations are taking place and chime in as required. You don’t need to make comments immediately, you might simply press the like button on your fan’s comments and reply later in the day when you have more time.
Now it’s over to you: Have you used any of these scheduling tools before? There are plenty out there to choose from. What other tools do you use over the holiday season to take a break from your computer?
Author: Celina Johnson
• Customised social media set up
• Daily Monitoring of your social media
• Marketing Plans and Strategies
• Experienced in Shopping Centres
• Experienced in Retail
• Experienced in Small Business
• Media trained
• Experienced in stakeholder liaison