There are do’s and do not’s when it comes to social media automation. For starters, you should almost never automate any communication between your company and its customers. This includes automatic replies, direct messages telling followers of your latest ebook they didn’t ask for, or liking every Tweet that includes the words “pizza”.
It’s important to be aware of what you’re losing when you automate your social media marketing. By not actively investing and being present on your social media channels as a business or business owner, you’re placing yourself at a massive disadvantage relative to competitors that are. Nowadays, consumers fawn over grounded, authentic brands – and social media puts you in a great position to be casual, and earn a customer’s hard earned dollars by doing so.
This is exactly why I tell my readers, clients and colleagues that less is more when it comes to deciding which social media platforms you’ll be present on as a brand. Social media takes a lot of work, and being active enough to give thoughtful replies and engage in dialogues can give you a big advantage over a long period of time. Because of this, if you only have the bandwidth to crush it on Instagram because you’ve got a business to run, then put your eggs in that basket.
The lowest hanging fruit when it comes to automating your social media marketing without losing your company’s personal touch is prescheduling posts. With tools like Hootsuite, Buffer or Agorapulse, you can take an hour or two to queue up an entire month’s worth of social media content across all networks.
Instead of manually combing through each social media channel’s individual insights, analytics and data, why not combine them into a single place using a tool like Sprout Social or Awario? This will allow you to see what kind of content is resonating best with your audience, enabling you to make sound business decisions on the go. If you’re tired of spreadsheets and calculators, investing in these tools could be worthwhile.
Monitoring social media to see what customers and prospects alike are actually saying about your company can be a game-changer, but it’s also insanely time-consuming. To help you out, use automation tools like Zapier and IFTTT to your advantage. For instance, you can set up Zaps on Zapier to alert you every time someone Tweets a certain keyword (like your company name), then compile them into an Excel or Google Sheet for easy access. From there, you can scroll through and reply to those posts.
Another example of this at play could be setting up Zaps to alert you each time the words “pizza recommendations” are used on Twitter. If you own a pizza shop, you can swoop in and recommend that person try your pizza shop. Having memorable touch points like this can go a long way when it comes to building positive brand perception from the ground up.