Is managing social media driving you to distraction? Planning, writing and scheduling tweets, posts and images can take up hours a day—hours that you, as a busy small business owner, probably don’t have to spare. Here are four tips to help you manage social media for your business and still get some sleep.
- Delegate. You don’t want to totally take yourself out of the social media loop, but if at all possible, you can save time by delegating social media to someone else on your team. Make sure the person is savvy, not only about how to use social media and the latest tools and trends on popular social networks, but also about your business’s brand and the image you want to portray. If you’re nervous about letting go of social media, you can set things up so you approve all posts/tweets/images etc., but someone else actually writes them and puts them in the system.
- Automate. Of course you shouldn’t automate all your social media interaction or content—that would be like asking your customers to like, retweet and follow a machine. However, wise use of social media scheduling, management and monitoring tools can help you stay on top of social media in less time. At the very least, look into dashboard options such as Buffer, which provides valuable social media analytics tools and lets you post to multiple accounts and social media platforms from one place, or Postling, which creates a “social inbox” to let you monitor what’s said about your business on social media. TweetDeck and HootSuite can help you manage multiple Twitter accounts.
- Get help creating content. Social media is closely entwined with content marketing. If you need more content to post, tweet and share than you and your team can create on their own, consider outsourcing blog posts and other content creation to experienced freelancers. You can use websites such as Junta42, Elance or Guru.com to find freelance writers with experience in writing social media-friendly content with the angle, focus and keywords you want.
- Curate. An alternative or add-on to content creation, consider curating content—that is, sharing relevant content from other websites on social media. By curating useful, interesting or shareable content, you’ll promote your business as an expert source and build your social media following, all without the headache of creating your own. (Just be sure you credit and link to the original source of what you’re curating—don’t pass it off as your own work.) A women’s clothing boutique could link to hot style trends for the month, an accountant could link to the latest IRS news—you get the idea.
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Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva, and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.