Have you ever heard the term "Wag the Dog?" Or I would say, "I think the tail is wagging the dog instead of the dog wagging the tail!" Meaning the wrong thing is in control in this situation and the one who should have the power is now being controlled by the very thing it was to control. This is how I feel when it comes to my social media scheduling. I find I can't add one more thing in self promotion because it has me trapped in a cycle of scrolling--forever. I created a solution to save time by helping us focus differently and purposefully and make that social behave.
Tools of the trade
When I look up this topic, I get A LOT about social media management tools like HootSuite and Buffer. These tools are great at merging your posts into one action and flowing them out across all of your platforms. There is some debate that Facebook limits their reach when posting from this type of site. The verdict is still out on that.
Your message matters
If you decide to use one or not, how do you organize your posts? You have to be intentional about your message before you even begin to put them in the paid service you just bought.
Simplify and focus on your branding message
I suggest using a simple spreadsheet to wrangle your thoughts. I am testing it out myself and will get back to you on it's success! Of course, I am a small business owner and way behind in my own plan! But there IS a PLAN!
I am using Google Docs so I can edit it anywhere anytime. Start with the big "buckets" that always need a post, such as holidays, inspiration and things that help people interact and keep you in their feed. I included my business topic - why people need my services. And an area for branding - what I do to solve their problem with my service. That ensures that each month those questions are brought up and answered in front of my audience. Then I went on to add some extra things that I want to align with personally. I care about sending a positive message of collaboration so I added a community post. A personal goals post helps my business page have a personal touch that is unique to me. I am selling me and my services so why not?
The other columns are where you dump all your ideas. All the seminar tips, good ideas you see on other people's threads, social suggestions and free downloads for increasing your social media traffic go in the content area. the topic column holds your general message and the text area refines your thoughts and will eventually be used for your post text.
Right time to write
If you are the kind that likes to sit down and write in one fluid motion this is perfect for you. You can focus and write all your posts for one category and not feel fragmented. If you are more random in your problem solving patterns, you can jump around and place your idea and words (and hashtags!) where they will be safe and ready to use and refine. The dog is now wagging the tail again!
So, you made a spontaneous post today about a topic on your schedule? Now what? Go ahead and record it with the date. Just move what you had planned to another month and make it work for you. Are you a little more ahead of the 8 ball? It sure feels like it! Your schedule can help you hit all the targets and messages you need to send about your product or service.
Next year becomes even easier as you look back and know for certain how, when and what you posted. Already quoted Mark Twain? Now you know to pick another quote or reuse it in a different way. It brings the fun back into making posts and communicating. Here is a link to my spreadsheet in Google Docs. COPY it to your own drive or download it as a template to create your own.
Stop over thinking. Start scheduling!
Get a year of one area and topic done? Start scheduling your posts and start enjoying the reward of organization! Still can't get to scheduling posts? Using this tool will still help you to plan and think through your social posts and intentional about your branding message.
Graphic Designer with awesome clients, happy wife, mother of two with a thought about this and that, Sarah is also the owner and instructor for Something From Nothing Paint Parties-On location custom canvas painting parties.