Depending on the type of role you play within your organization, your social media routine will differ. I’m going to provide two scenarios to illustrate what I mean. The important thing to note is that having a routine for how you will engage in social media will allow you to test different variations to really find out what is working best. If you don’t have a routine it’s going to be hard to make comparisons between the different tactics you might want to test.
Scenario 1: Routine for the full-time social media strategist
So first, let’s look at your routine if you are a dedicated social media strategist or coordinator. To give credit where it’s due, I’ll let you know that much of this advice comes from Etsy’s former social media strategist Dave Brown, who’s now with the marketing firm MKG in New York. I loved the advice so I’m going to pass it on to you here.
Dave says separate your time into three buckets: your business content, your creative nuggests and your engagement. Here’s what he means by each:
First, your business-centered content refers to those items that are meant to drive traffic to your website, blog, or product pages. It might also be communication from your CEO or any content that promotes your company and pushes out your messages. This type of content is usually meant to support your main objectives for engaging on social networks.
Your routine might need about an hour per day to research what content you need to post related to your company for the day, and then about 30-45 minutes of additional time to schedule those items into your daily routine.
Second, “creative nuggets” are thought provoking ideas, articles, photos and websites in which your audience might be interested. It’s great to post creative nuggets because it shows that you’re engaging with your audience and having a conversation about things rather than just pushing your products or messages at people. Often times strategists will refer to this as the “pull” in a “push-pull” routine that helps keep things balanced out.
Again, this might take an hour or two everyday for research, reading and gathering the type of content that you want to promote. Then another 30-45 minutes to schedule the posts and work them into your schedule.
The third bucket is engagement, which includes reacting, commenting, and making sure people know you’re not a robot. You should allow adequate time to respond to questions, and depending on the volume of incoming messages you receive, this could take 30 minutes or several hours. You job might entail routing questions to different company departments and then getting responses to your audience in a timely manner.
As a general rule, Dave recommends that for every 2 business content pieces, one creative nugget should be tossed into the mix to prevent your audience from getting numb to your promotions.
Scenario 2: Routine for the social media “engager” – when it’s only one part of your job
Let’s switch gears and talk about a situation where you might have less time to dedicate to social media. The previous scenario was really geared toward someone who has a majority of their time dedicated to executing a social media strategy. But that may not be your case. You might be in a position where social media is part of your job, but not all of it. So you have to really make the most of the 1-2 hours you can dedicate to social media.
So here’s a daily routine that might work for you. And this is a routine that I often suggest to executives or marketing team members who are new to social media.
To execute this routine, you’ll need to have about 1 hour every day in your schedule.
First, spend 10 minutes to determine what your key messages will be for your company today. Pick out 2-4 key messages and make sure they have a “home” somewhere on your company website or a URL that you can link to. Pictures are also great to have for each message, so make sure you have these assets lined up.
Spend 10 minutes scheduling (using Hootsuite for example) 2-4 messages related to these messages on Facebook and Twitter. If you have more time, you can include additional networks.
Spend your next 10 minutes scanning 3-5 go-to websites or news outlets for the top headlines related to your business. If there are articles or new products or photos that your audience would be interested in, pull together any information you will need to post these to your networks.
Spend another 10 minutes queuing up the new content nuggets – but at least on Facebook, you’ll want to space them out a few hours so they have time to gather feedback and interactions from your network. On Twitter you can also space them out, but you can post much more frequently since the life of a tweet can be only seconds or minutes depending on how many people a person may follow in their feed.
Spend another 10 minutes on your lunch break, and 10 minutes at the end of the day to respond to comments and answer questions, check the “insights” on how your content was received and reflect how you can adjust or make changes for tomorrow.
So with either of these routines, you will need to set aside special days to evaluate your plans or to conduct special campaigns. But this is meant to give you some ideas on how to structure a daily routine that makes engaging on social media more manageable. Without a daily routine it can seem too overwhelming to really make a difference. So do yourself a favor and document what your routine will be and then adjust it based on the tactics that are working for you.
Do you have a routine that works for you? Feel free to comment below and tell us what works for your team.