Social media is extremely necessary for blogs and small businesses to thrive. If a potential customer is searching for a blog to read or a product to buy, you can almost assume they will not only search on Google but also on Pinterest, Facebook, or Twitter. The problem with social media is that it can consume ALL of your time. From scrolling through news feeds to commenting on a friend’s posts, soon you will realize that you hadn’t done any work but read all of Buzzfeed’s latest articles. There’s a few strategies that you can use to leverage your social media use while also staying organized as a blogger and small business owner. It takes time and persistence to really make it work!
1. Record all of your login information. With so many social media websites these days, it’s easy to forget your details. Make a document to store your usernames and passwords so you can easily login when needed. Store this file in a safe place – either protected by a password or printed and kept in a safe. If possible, register with the same username on each side for simplicity – for yourself and other searching for you on social networks. For example, try to have the same Instagram and Twitter handle. If you’re a new blogger, make sure your name is available on ALL networks. Even if you don’t think you will tweet now, you probably will later.
Try a service like LastPass to share user names and passwords with your virtual assistant or to REALLY keep your passwords safe and secure.
2. Schedule your social media posts. Bulk scheduling your social media updates will make your digital life so much easier and organized. There are programs that you can easily load with your tweets, Facebook posts, and pins so that you can set it up and forget it. This keeps you from needing to log back into networks multiple times a day. My favorite services for social media scheduling includes Buffer for Twitter, Post Planner for Facebook, and Tailwind for Pinterest.
3. Create a master list of your most popular posts and category. In order to create your social media posts, you should have links to your most popular posts available. These are the blog posts that will bring the most traffic to your site or generate the most comments and shares on your networks. A Microsoft Excel spreadsheet works perfectly for this information (or use Google Drive which is free!). Create multiple sheets for months, holidays, or seasons depending on how you want to categorize your posts. Having the links ready will help you keep your social media organized and cuts down on the time you spend searching for posts to share.
A simple strategy to follow is to look up all the holidays in the month ahead including silly ones like National Rum Day or Talk Like a Pirate Day. Find posts (including your own) that correspond with those events and add them to your Facebook scheduler (right in Facebook!) or pop them into a service like Post Planner. Schedule two weeks or even a month ahead of time in a hurry so you won’t have to think about Facebook or Twitter for weeks!
4. Follow a social media checklist for daily and weekly activities. Knowing what you need on your social media accounts each day is a very organized way to tackle the tasks. Create to-do lists or checklists for yourself so you aren’t second guessing what needs to be done. Divide the list by networks or times of day you need to post to them. What works for me is a routine. I publish a post, and I then share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I re-share it later in the day with the tool IFTTT. If this then that is a place where you can make “recipes” to promote your content (for example, publish any new blog post on Twitter or share an image on Facebook). Once you set up these “recipes,” they can run until you say otherwise. This is perhaps my #1 tip for those who manage multiple blogs!
5. Update social media directly from your blog. Having a plugin for sharing posts straight from your website lessens the time and burden needed for social media. You don’t have to schedule anything or log in and possibly waste time getting sucked into your feeds. It is ESSENTIAL to have the right sharing tools available for your readers (And yourself!) on your blog. WordPress makes this simple with plugins like Shareaholic and Social Warfare while Blogger is a little tricky. Blogger’s integrated share buttons offer NO customization. Do some research if you’re on Blogger to find out which tools are available for you to add to your blog.