by guest author Mallie Rydzik
Creating social media systems is essential to staying consistent (that’s exactly why I created the 4 Pillars system to help you create better content in less time!) so I’m thrilled to welcome Mallie back to the blog to show us how to go beyond tools to creating systems that work for you and your business.
Take it away, Mallie!
Hootsuite, Buffer, Edgar, Latergramme…they’re all great tools, but they’re also old news.
By now, you already know how to schedule your social media “conversation starters” ahead of time on various platforms. You’ve got Twitter chat tools down to a science.
But how are you systematizing…you?
When people think about “social media systems,” they tend to think in terms of the tools above. But systems are more than just tools. They’re the ways you successfully repeat processes every day, week, or month.
Batching vs. Routines
Even those of us who use a robust tool like Edgar to post and recycle our social media posts have to take time to actually create content for various platforms.
There are two excellent ways to handle this task: batching the content at one time or consistently creating content on a regular basis.
Batching allows you to set aside one day per month, week, quarter, fortnightly, or your other favorite longer period of time just to create social media content. Rather than having to take time out of your business to regularly focus on these items, you can put it on your calendar like you do your quarterly taxes (you do pay your quarterly taxes, right?).
Many of you may be more amenable to routines, however. I envision you as the type who wake up each morning, drink a green smoothie, meditate, and do yoga before tackling your work. If you are one of these unicorns, then use it to your advantage. Schedule time into your daily workday to create new content for social media.
The Human Factor
If there is one thing Jackie Johnstone excels at, it’s making sure we all know to “be human” on social media. But yes, believe it or not, you can create routines around being a human.
Whether you batch or handle social media creation more regularly, you’ll need to consistently check in on your social media to stay engaged with your audience.
Schedule time each day to be engaged, either by simply checking in or noting times of relevant Twitter chats or Facebook parties that you’d like to participate in. Live events on social media can be difficult to remember, so put it in your calendar or favorite to-do list app with a reminder.
I’m a systems junkie, which means I couldn’t end this article without some unconventional tool tips.
There are great plugins available to prevent you from becoming unfocused while you check in on your social media—search “news feed blocker” and get results for all your favorite browsing devices.
My team and many others use Slack as our primary communications device in lieu of endless emails. But did you know that you can use it even as a one-person show? Slack has native integrations with various social media platforms, and you can have all your mentions, retweets, likes, favorites, etc. imported into a single “channel” that will prevent you from getting lost in Facebook-checking Narnia every day.
Want to keep track of important posts or relevant data from social media? Use Zapier or IFTTT to connect your social media accounts with Dropbox, Evernote, or Google Drive, so that every time you (or someone else) favorites a tweet or likes a post, it’s archived in a single document for easy future reference.
You can get lost out there in all the cool social media tools, tactics, and productivity tips. Never forget that social media itself is just one tool in your larger business, and it’s your job to use it effectively.