Social Media Automation Tools to Save Time for the Holidays December 03, 2015 03:00

The holidays are fast approaching. Your to-do list is ever-growing, and your stress levels are increasing. Ever wish you had a couple of extra a hours in the day? Sometimes you need to take a step back and see if you can automate some tasks to lighten the load.

Social media is something that can easily be automated. We all know it has some great long term benefits, but right now it kinda feels like it’s not a priority. Surely no one will notice if you don’t send any tweets or update your Facebook status today…right?

Thankfully there’s a way to make an even bigger social media impact than you currently are, and in less time — something that earns major points over the busy holiday period.

Social media automation tools enable you to do this because they give you more control over your social accounts and allow you post more content.

Depending on the tools you decide to use, you can control what kind of content is shared, what time that content is posted, and how frequently. The most appealing aspect of social media automation is how much time it will free up in your schedule.

Scheduling

Buffer

Buffer is an easy to use and free tool which provides a clever way of scheduling your content across a range of social media channels. It operates a sort of virtual queuing system which you can use to fill with pieces of content (videos, pictures, articles, helpful links). You can then stagger your posting times throughout the day, so you don’t have to manually do it or post a lump of content at once.

buffer-text-1024-white-bg

This means you can create a consistent social media pattern or schedule through the week without having to worry about micro-managing posting times. Buffer also provides an analytics service which gives some handy info on engagement rates and the reach/potential reach of your posts.

  • Supports multiple Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter profiles
  • Seamless integration with Bit.ly to shorten links
  • Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari browser extensions available to download so you share content straight from the web to your social profiles

Hootsuite

Hootsuite has over 10 million users, making one of the most widely used social media automation and management tools. It allows both casual users, hardcore social media pros and businesses alike to execute campaigns across multiple social media sites like Facebook and Twitter from the handy dashboard screen. Hootsuite has become an essential tool for managing social media, measuring campaign results, and tracking conversion rates.

hootsuite

There are 3 solutions Hootsuite offers: free, pro, and enterprise for managing unlimited social profiles, advanced analytics, enhanced messaging features, and Google Analytics and Facebook insights integrations. Perhaps the biggest benefit of using Hootsuite is that you can get started for free.

  • Connect Hootsuite to 35 social media accounts
  • Blog and RSS feed integrations
  • Monitor conversation rates and mentions from the dashboard
  • Integrate and manage Hootsuite with WordPress

Sprout Social

Schedule, publish and analyze your social media posts using Sprout social. This powerful engagement and social media management platform offers a single stream inbox designed to ensure you never miss key messages.

SproutSocial-Logo-Light-BG-NoReflect-Large-42

It has an array of tools to seamlessly post, collaborate and schedule messages to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. The platform also tools for monitoring (e.g set up keywords for your brand) as well as analytics which can help you visualize those all-important important metrics.

Content Aggregators

Instead of spending hours trying to collect relevant and interesting pieces of content that may get shared once or twice and bring your website a handful of visitors, try using the following tools to identify trending topics within different niches to discover relevant content.

You want high quality articles which will appeal to your audience and get shared, hopefully bringing more users to your site. But the holiday season often means you’re too busy to dedicate more than a few minutes a day to researching the week’s top news stories, reading them, and deciding if they have what it takes to get shared. Content curation tools are great for cutting out all the research. You can simply add your interests (or, rather, your followers’ interests) and these tools will collect the top stories within that niche from the past 24 hours, week, month, year.

  • Feedly – With Feedly, you can add your interests (it gives you “Starter Kits” as suggestion, like Tech, Fashion, Baking and so on) or you can enter topics of interest and individual sites you want to follow.
  • ContentGems – Add up to 2 interests on the free plan. ContentGems will bring you the top stories from the past day, showing you the most recent first.
  • Buzzsumo – Using the free plan, you simply type your area of interest into the search bar (“fashion” for example) and Buzzsumo will show you the most shared content in that area from the time period you’ve chosen. You can also add filters like content type and country.

Linking Social Media Sites

IFTTT (“If This Then That”) is a tool which lets you link different web tools and services by means of “recipes”. “Recipes” follow the format “if this then that” where “this” is a trigger and “that” is a consequential action.

IFTTT lets you to automate several activities, for example, you want your Twitter photo to update whenever you change your Instagram profile picture. What you would need to do is create a “recipe” which says an Instagram photo change is the trigger (this) and updating your Twitter image is the action (that). IFTTT supports 71 channels, including Dropbox, Facebook, Twitter, SMS, and more.

This can be pretty handy if you might be changing profile pictures and cover photos to promote various products, sales and promotions over the holidays.

The holidays are a busy time for any retailer, but that’s no reason for your social media strategy to fall behind, especially as it can be a huge driver of sales. Use these tools to take the pressure off during the busiest period.


This was a guest post by Jodie Pride, content creator at Veeqo.com order management software for online retailers.

The post Social Media Automation Tools to Save Time for the Holidays appeared first on ShopStorm.