Top four automation tools for an easier social media presence
Working as a digital media manager, I've learnt a thing or two about social media and the key elements needed for it to work. Anyone who can relate will tell you about the two Cs.
Content and Consistency. Content is king and Consistency is key to a successful social media campaign. People are consuming content at the fastest rate ever. So what do we do? We give them more.
Now while starting a business or a project can be time-consuming, it must factor in social media marketing to make the impact needed publicly. Whether you are a blogger, an entrepreneur, or you handle the media work for any organization, there are ways to make your work much easier. This requires producing content that rings true with your business, creativity that is fresh and constant. But you already knew that.
We also know that can be daunting when you have to split your time between figuring out these media strategies, publishing content and actually running the business. That’s a lot of brain power that can be managed much better.
Hello, automation! Automaton, in this regard, are essentially rules, set in place to carry out your work, based on a schedule and saves you a ton of time. This can be done at preset times and dates at a consistent pace with maximum output.
I know there people who have argued that social media works when there is an emotional connection to target audience and followers thus automation can be repetitive and mechanical. While this is understandable, this can always be properly managed to maintain relevance with your followers. Thankfully, there are tools,(of different capacities) that ease you into this successfully.
Buffer and HootSuite : Buffer is a content publishing platform that lets you schedule your posts on your social accounts. Buffer supports main social accounts like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram, and Pinterest. The core unique thing about Buffer is being able to put content directly into the platform for a scheduled time. This includes images and videos as well. Buffer lets you download it's extension as a browser plugin if you're interested in sharing website links as well as retweets from Twitter.
Before there was Buffer, there was Hootsuite, HootSuite is a social media management platform that lets post content on several social media accounts at a time. In many ways, Hootsuite and Buffer similar but you are more likely to have more social media options with HootSuite. Both are incredible time-savers and easy to use. You are only to choose per your brand and what comes easiest to you. Both platforms have monitoring and analytic services that help you track engagement reach and overall performance.
Personally, I prefer Buffer because I love the simple interface both on mobile and web. I also think it's easier to use.
IFTT and Zapier: Both platforms, let's you set a chain of commands that automate your life and makes you wholesomely productive. If you remember how rules work in emails, it is basically the same thing. As the name, IFTT suggests "If this, then that", you can set your own automation rules by connecting to several apps and platforms. IFTT refers to these as "Applets". For example, since I do 50% of my work in my Evernote account, I set an applet that lets me receive emails from VIP contacts into my Evernote directly. I also have an applet that automatically sends published blog posts from my website on to my Medium account as drafts, so I can work on them later. Or a tweet is sent automatically when I published a post. Get my drift?
Zapier works the same way, however, it has access to more platforms including social accounts like Facebook or Twitter. Unlike IFTT, Zapier is a web-only automation client. If you are looking for a more specific, detailed chain of rules to work with, I'll say Zapier would be your best bet. Zapier works great for small teams or more professional purposes as opposed IFTT which is for personal use.
All platforms are free to download and use. They, however, offer priced packages per your needs and expected outcomes.
Everyone has their sweet spot in the Internet of Things. What's your favourite automation tool?