Social Media Resources That Will Save You Several Hours Every Week

posted this in
Social Media
on January 14th, 2014

When I first started doing social media marketing a few years back, the biggest hurdle for me was finding the time to devote to running accounts.

There’s a lot that goes into keeping social media accounts alive. From creating content to tracking replies, it can be really time consuming. (And unless you have a person dedicated to maintaining your social media accounts on a daily basis, there’s a good chance you’re not doing all you could be.)

It wasn’t until I found these resources that I was able to work efficiently and save a ton of time.

Knowing where to find content, how to organize and publish it, and how to easily keep track of comments saved me from spending time I didn’t have on building up clients’ accounts.

Here are a few of my favorite resources that will easily help you save several hours of time every week, too!

Where to find content

Coming up with unique, engaging content is one of the most difficult things about social media.

Content keeps your social media accounts flowing. It gets your customers to click on links, share posts and leave comments. Without content, you have nothing.

Here are a few resources to help you find relevant, quality content:

  • News aggregator websites: Aggregator websites that pull in articles from various sources is my go-to resource for finding content. They pull in popular articles from around the web so you can search for what’s relevant to your business without jumping from site to site to find information. A few of my favorites include Alltop and Popurls.
  • Forums: Another great place to find information is on forums. Is there an industry forum that you follow? Look out for questions that people are wanting answers for. There’s a good chance your followers might have the same questions. A great place to look for forum results is Boardreader. You type in a subject and it will display forum results.
  • Your website: There’s a ton of information on your website you can turn into content, especially if you blog on a regular basis. You can post links to blog posts, how-to guides, news about upcoming events or promotions you listed on your website.
  • Your employees: The employees in your company are a goldmine for information. Start using them as a resource for coming up with content.
  • Does your company have a sales or customer service team? These are the people that are dealing with your customers on a daily basis and hear all the questions, concerns and comments you might not know about.
  • Turn their conversations into content. For example, say you’re in the business of selling air conditioners. Your sales team gets the same question over and over: “You have so many different models available. How do I know which is right for my home?”
  • Bam! Content idea is born. Start publishing tips on social media about which air conditioners are best for different types of homes.

How to organize content

Once your content juices are flowing, the next step is making sure all of your information is well organized. There’s nothing worse than having a post-it note here and a Word document there all with content ideas you want to post on social media.

I like to use a content calendar to keep track of ideas, content I’ve written, links and the dates I plan to post the material. It’s nothing fancy (it’s based in excel). You can download it here: Content Scheduling Template.

How to easily publish content

After your content is written and organized by date, it’s important to have a way to easily publish it to your social media networks.

Depending on how many accounts you run, posting manually on all the accounts can eat up a lot of your time.

We use a dashboard that allows us to schedule all of our content for the different networks we use—in one place. You can easily change dates, edit content and see an overview of everything that will be posted and when.

Depending on your budget, there are a few different social media scheduling tools you can use:

  • Free accounts: There are a few different free tools out there that allow you to manage accounts. I recommend using Hootsuite as a good starting point. The basic plan is free to setup and allows you to manage up to 5 accounts.
  • Paid accounts: Paid accounts give you a little more flexibility in how you manage the accounts. Typically they give you more options for scheduling, allow you to use more accounts and have better reporting capabilities. Sprout Social is one I recommend using if you’re looking for dashboard that does it all.

How to track comments and send replies

It’s easy to keep track of comments from customers. Have each social media network send notifications to your email inbox when someone comments or mentions you.

An even better way: Use a social media dashboard to see all of your comments and mentions of your company all in one place. You can even reply to the comments, too.

A lot of the dashboards for tracking replies go hand-in-hand with the dashboards for scheduling content. Here are a few dashboards I recommend using:

Do you know of any other social media resources?

These are just a few of the resources that have helped me save a ton of time, but do you know of any more? Share your time-saving social media resources with me on Facebook!