After overwhelming feedback from Five Secrets Instagram Influencers Are Not Sharing post that carried over to a discussion on Twitter. I knew I needed to create a post on how I utilize automation for the three platforms I love using. Today, we are going to talk about how I automate my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
Automation has been discussed on the blog several times over but it wasn’t until Xo Dear Brit shared how she uses automation for her business that a light bulb went off for me. You see I was just running rampant like you always on apps thinking I would miss something if I “wasn’t online”. On top of that I felt spam like prompting my own content. In the last month or so, I haven’t gotten over that and seen what automation can do for my business when done right.
Let’s first note that automation is not pushing the same content across all the platforms you are on. This is something important to remember. If you want your followers to join you on a multitude of platforms you must offer them something on each platform that is vastly different from the others.
Last month, it was announced that Instagram reached 500 million users world wide. Which is mind blogging to think your customer base is really at your finger tips within reach. If you have not read, how to make a visually appealing Instagram feed I suggest you start there. In recent months, there has been issues with chronically order, ads and use of API but honestly those are the last of your issues if you’re not using the feed right. Here are a couple things I learned;
- Optimal posting time for engagement: 8am-10am EST (Monday-Friday)
- Weekends are busy, don’t count on high engagement
- People don’t like commenting first.
- Color Scheme matters.
As for automation of the platform there are several tools out there. I chose to go with Planoly* a company founded by another small business owner that knew the struggles I was having. I love that I am able to visually see what my feed will look like with those images on them. The app allows you to see unschedule, schedule and all. If you want to do cool designs it has a feature for that too. The app will notify you when its time to post. Yes, you still open the app but everything is copied and pushed to Instagram.
I love utilizing twitter everyday of the week. As, I have said before it is one big conversation and you can just hope in. The one thing I was doing wrong was having constant conversation but never promoting, products, services or whatever I had on. My audience on twitter is a small portion of my target audience. Getting over my fear of promotion was a big one but I just jumped into it. Here are a couple things I learned;
- Dedicated a day to set up automation for the month
- Create bitly links to track clicks
- 5 promotion tweets a day spaced out
- Interact with audience between those promotion tweets
- You don’t have to always promote you
- Include graphics if possible with your tweets
For automation on Twitter I utilize the free platform Hootsuite to make sure my post go on schedule. My first step was creating a schedule that felt comfortable for me as a business owner. Schedule post only go out Monday-Friday between 8am and 9pm at night. In addition to that, I determined I wanted to increase traffic to old post so I focused on scheduling those tweets.
Everyone has a love and hate relationship with Facebook. Personally, I am very indifferent on the subject matter because I know my audience shares my content with others who do not follow me. For the longest, I only had my blog post schedule to go out. Now, I have a day of the week vibes where I share my thoughts and a post regarding Youtube. Here is a couple things I learned;
- Always make sure there is a visual appealing graphic
- Afternoons are great time for posting
- Give my audience a reason to share my post
- Activity is high during the week and slow on the weekends
To most people’s surprise I actually use Facebook for automation. You can click the publish drop down menu and it allows you to select a time and day you want to post your content.
Every platform is automated different to reach the maximize exposure and growth within the platform. Regardless of the platform I am the same person talking to my audience. Automation allows me to be on the platform when I can’t just sit there all day hanging out. Then in the evening I will schedule maybe an hour to respond to comments.
*denotes affiliate link is used.