If you’re the only person at your organization managing social media, chances are you’re feeling a little overwhelmed. With the continuous evolution of social media, you may feel like you’re constantly playing catch-up. Below are a few of the commonly asked questions I hear from one-man social media teams.
Q: Which social media outlets should I devote the most time to?
A: The answer to this is simpler than you think. First off, if your target audience isn’t using a particular outlet, don’t worry about having a presence there. Think of it this way, if you’re the Indiana CPA Society, it would be silly to pay for billboard space along Interstate 15 in Utah. Likewise, if your audience isn’t on Pinterest, your organization doesn’t need to devote staff resources there. For those social media outlets your audience is using, the time you spend should be proportionate to the size of your audience active on that social media outlet. If 20 percent of your audience is on Twitter, then 20 percent of your social media time should be focused on Twitter.
Q: Is it possible to preschedule social media posts?
A: Yes! During the summer, I met with a group of smaller organizations, and I was surprised to learn a number of these organizations were unaware of free tools that can be used to not only schedule posts, but monitor your organization’s social presence on multiple outlets. One common and free tool is Hootsuite. It’s fairly intuitive and they offer free tutorials.
Q: What time of day should I post on social media?
A: The answer to this question depends on your audience. You should post when the majority of your audience is active on social media. If you don’t know when that is, pull your analytics to see when the activity levels of engagement are the highest. Once you think you’ve discovered the perfect time for your organization make sure you still test different times periodically. For example, about a year ago I discovered the best time for our Facebook audience was Thursdays during the 11 a.m. hour ET. Posting during that time produced the highest engagement. However, now when I post at that time, all I hear is crickets.
Final Advice: Know Your Audience
Social media is evolving as is your audience. Some may think if you want to use social media more effectively, you need to better understand social media tools. While this is true, I would also add the most important action you can take to use social media more effectively is to get to know your audience better. Social media shouldn’t been seen as a check box on your organizational to-do list, but as a strategic tool to reach your unique audience. As they say in PR speak, you don’t rate your success by counting the number of press releases you send out, rather the number of times you’re actually mentioned in the media.
I’ve mentioned only a few social media basics, so if you have more questions about how you can leverage social media more effectively tweet them at me @MegMorgan25.