Automating and Scheduling with Hootsuite

social-media-marketing

The blog was first posted on AIB Business blog – Visit it here  

Social Media – you either hate it or you love it, and both feelings are completely understandable, especially when it comes to businesses. For one thing, social media can take up a lot of time, and it is also one component of a digital marketing arsenal that can be hard to account for when it comes to return on investment (ROI). In a later article I will discuss how to measure social media correctly so you can attribute to sales made but, for now, I want to share how you can use a tool – Hootsuite – to manage your SME’s social media presence.Hootsuite is a social media management tool, which allows you to track and manage your social media channels, monitor what people are saying about your brand, and directly post updates and replies. To use it, you will need to sign-up for Hootsuite at https://hootsuite.com/ – the free plan should be enough for now to get started.

 

You can sign-up with your Twitter, Facebook, or Google account, or get started the old fashioned way by creating a username and password.

 

 

Once signed in, you need to select the networks you want to use for scheduling, so in my case I’ve connected my Twitter, my Personal LinkedIn, my company LinkedIn page, my Google + Business page and My Facebook Business page.

After you connect your profiles, you can start using the tool by selecting the top white bar and publishing your first post:

 

 

Within the “Compose message…” field you can then select the networks you want to post to and when you want your message posted (scheduling).

 

 

The scheduler is great as you can “manage” your social media activity now and schedule posts for publication when you might otherwise be busy. The Auto scheduler can also help you look at the different social connections you have and find the optimum time to post a particular item.

On top of this, Hootsuite has a browser extension (called “Hootlet”) that makes sharing interesting content to all of your social connections as easy as right-clicking a mouse.

To use this extension, simply download it for your browser and follow the install procedure.

For the Firefox browser, you can find it here:

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-Us/firefox/addon/hootsuite/

For the Chrome browser, download from this link:

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/hootsuite-hootlet/bjgfdlplhmndoonmofmflcbiohgbkifn

Once you have installed the browser extension, you can right-click the mouse on the content you want to share and select “Share page via Hootlet”.

 

 

Then select the social network you want share it with and either send directly or schedule it in!

When it comes to social media in business, you need a plan – one with Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that set expectations. Even with tools like Hootsuite that can make life a lot easier, you are still spending time and effort so it’s important you get the most out of it. In future articles in this series, I will be covering elements like social media measurement and competitor analysis, so be sure tosubscribe to AIB’s SME Newsletter to get updates sent directly to your mailbox!

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