Social media provides a great, and mainly free, channel for promotion and communication. Unfortunately social and public sector marketers don’t always have the time or staff to consistently publish to Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, and Instagram. Better tools for managing social media make consistency easier to achieve.
Free tools exist for social media automation. Buffer offers the best free tool I’ve found. With Buffer, you schedule up to 10 posts per platform for publication at future days and times. Scheduling allows you to write, review, and upload batches of social media posts, line up their publication, and move on to other tasks.
The free version of Buffer supports Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram.
Buffer also provides analytics so that you can track how well your social media content supports your marketing goals.
Pros and Cons of Tools for Managing Social Media
Using tools like Buffer simplifies the process around consistently publishing to your organization’s social media accounts. It’s also easier to plan and see content you are publishing simultaneously across your accounts.
Scheduling works better for broadcasting organizational news, information, and promotions. Try it with infographics!
Scheduling social media works less well for encouraging the social side of social media. There’s no substitute for timely interaction, reaction, and spontaneity with your audience. That can’t be automated or scheduled. Always be ready to interact with your people.
Scheduling too far ahead might make you look out of touch if something significant and relevant occurs in the interval between scheduling and publishing.
You can strike a balance by scheduling strategic broadcast posts but also having people authorized to create and reshare more timely, opportunistic material.