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How to Manage Your Social Media in One Hour a Week

Managing social media can be a full time job. In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor estimates that the field of Public Relations will grow by 12% in the next six years, mostly due to to an increase in demand for social media positions. Here at Lunar Logic, we understand that using social media has become a necessity for small businesses, but we also understand that small businesses don’t have the money to spend on hiring a social media manager. So we got to thinking—what if you only had 1 hour a week to spend on social media? That’s a sobering thought, but we know it’s doable. We’ve put together a plan. Building a social media presence is going to take more time than an hour, but once you have the machine moving, one hour becomes a lot of time. That hour is what this blog is about.

You Can't Do It All

There are more social media platforms than we can count. Depending on your business, some platforms are better than others, but for most, the five best are: Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Linkedin and Pinterest. Each platform is unique unto itself. Facebook tends to be more informal than Linkedin. It’s like going to a bar with your friends as opposed to going to a bar with your boss. You’re going to act differently. Ideally, you would create separate content for each platform, but that isn’t going to be possible if you only have an hour a week to work on social media. You can’t do it all. In our 1-hour scenario, we suggest posting on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ and here’s why:
  • Facebook has the most reach with over 1 billion active members. According to research by Tom Webster and the team at Edison Research 47% of Americans say Facebook has the greatest impact on their spending habits.
  • Twitter has over 255 million monthly active users, but its the fastest growing social network. Between 2012-2013 Twitter grew 44% and it has a very engaged group with which to interact, with 76% of its users being active posters.
  • We recommend Google+ because not only does it have over 540 million active users, there is evidence that a well done Google+ profile can boost the performance of your search results. The more Google verifies and trusts your business, the more they will promote you.

Curating: 15 Minutes

Set up a Feedly account. This site helps curate articles for you to post. It’s very simple to set up. You tell Feedly what kind of articles you are interested in. For example, an interior design firm’s Feedly might have articles about urban planning, photography, home design, food and architecture. They can choose from these to populate stories for their Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. After reading a summary, they can bookmark them for use later. A lot of times at Lunar Logic we end up bookmarking articles that we want to read later. We’ve got a few hundred articles stored for a rainy day. Setting up a Feedly and storing an archive of articles takes time, but once you have an archive, you have a time saver. By checking in once a week and spending 15 minutes sorting through and bookmarking articles to create posts, you can out-bookmark us in no time.

Scheduling Your Posts: 10 Minutes

Here at Lunar Logic we use Hootsuite to schedule our social media in advance. This doesn’t mean we don’t live-tweet or send out a Facebook post if something nerdy and cool crosses our inbox, but for the most part we schedule in advance. Hootsuite is one tool; you could just as easily use another tool like buffer. We like Hootsuite because it shows us how many characters we’re using and this is important for sites like Twitter that limit them. Hootsuite is very simple to use. You log in to your various platforms from Hootsuite and you can schedule a week’s worth of posts in a matter of minutes. Hootsuite also pulls the feeds of the people you follow so that you can find articles to post or retweet quickly and maintain your sense of involvement with your network. And if you use the Chrome browser, there is a Hootsuite icon you can install to quickly schedule articles from inside Feedly. It’s internet magic. It saves time.

Interacting: 5 Minutes A Day (25 Minutes)

We can’t stress this enough—social media is an interactive form of marketing. You need to respond if someone comments on your link, if they retweet your tweet, or share your article. If someone mentions you, you need to respond. Scheduling your posts is a great time saver, but you can’t let your profile become automated. This is why we recommend setting aside five minutes a day to respond to social media. That’s 25 minutes a week. Be part of the conversation. That’s what good social media is; it’s a conversation. Respond once a day, maybe at the beginning of your lunch.

Here’s a pro-tip: turn off the notifications feature on your phone. It is distracting. It will steal all of your time, because humans are curious, and you want to know why you have a red 4 above your facebook icon.

Analyze: 10 Minutes

Hootsuite and buffer each offer their own version of tools with which to analyze your social media. Take 10 minutes a week and see what tweets had the most clicks and what facebook post was commented on the most. Look at when those were posted and what kind of article sparked discussion. Maybe your most talked about posts were always on a Tuesday morning, so now you know that is when your network is all checking in on their feeds: on Tuesday mornings. Maybe the following Tuesday you schedule a tweet about an event your business has coming up. Your social media should be working for you. It’s a tool and it is a precise one at that. Check in on it and make sure its doing its job.
An hour a week may not seem like a lot of time, but it can be enough. With tools like Feedly and Hootsuite, social media is getting easier to manage. Remember to have fun with this, and if you have any questions about social media marketing its something we do here at Lunar Logic. Contact us, we’re here to help.

Image Credit: http://tinyurl.com/z72nwyq
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