Social media can be dangerous for marketers, but not in the way that you might think.
While social media can be a big liability for large brands with a habit of saying the wrong thing, it can also be the largest threat to an average marketer’s most valuable resource: time.
Like college students procrastinating a final paper, we find little tasks to fill our time and make us feel like we are accomplishing something, at the expense of our important projects and responsibilities.
We spend a few minutes responding to customers here, and a few minutes sharing our content there. Social media provides an endless supply of these little activities. But at the end of the day, these blocks of time here and there add up to a serious time drain that most time-strapped marketers can’t afford (unless you are a social media manager, in which case, well done, carry on.)
Many marketers take a reactionary approach to their social strategy, responding to messages as they come in, constantly monitoring the influx of social messages, dividing their attention so they are never 100% focus on any task. If we are to ever have any hope of taking control of our social strategies, we need to have a well-defined plan, automate repetitive tasks, and restrict our time investment. Let’s take a closer look at how to accomplish this.
Have a Plan
If you are going to finally gain the upper hand with your social media strategy, you need to be proactive, defining a strategy for your most popular channels. Identify the most important activities for each social channel and define a short period of time each day for you to accomplish those tasks. It can be tempting to send just one more response or share just one more post, but try to stay disciplined and stick to your allotted time.
There will always be social messages that demand more immediate attention like customer complaints or sales prospects. Work with your sales and services departments to establish workflows for these social messages so that you can pass them off to the appropriate person seamlessly.
Automate Where You Can
Advanced solutions like marketing automation can also be a tremendous asset when it comes to taking control of your social media. Automation platforms allow you to schedule content to your major social channels from one central interface, eliminating the need to jump from site to site and allowing you to see all of your scheduled posts in one place.
Automation can also handle a lot of the prospecting legwork for you. Social profiles can be automatically imported into a prospect’s record, providing your sales team with more sales intelligence. Prospect tracking can also identify any prospects engaging with your social posts across multiple channels.
It’s Still Going to Take Time
No amount of planning, automation, or strategy will ever remove social media completely from a modern marketer’s to-do list. A certain amount of human involvement is always necessary in social media to develop real connections and build engaged communities. However, marketers can take control of their social media and prevent it from dictating their day-to-day activities.
Once you’ve mastered your social media and removed the unnecessary time and stress, you can start to see social media for the wonderful marketing opportunity that it is. Plan fun unconventional campaigns, showcase your company culture, and develop a network of enthusiastic evangelists for your brand. What will you do with all the time you save? Let us know in the comments below!
Learn how to Rock Your Social Media in 30 Minutes with the slide deck below!