Social media is the thief of time according to small business, so how do you manage your time and social media marketing?
Next to ‘pass the chocolate’, ‘I don’t have the time’ is one of the most common phrases I hear muttered in my life, and it usually comes from small business owners when they are talking about social media. And every time I hear it, a little sigh of frustration escapes from me.
It frustrates me as I am usually having this conversation with small business owners because they are looking for ideas on how to improve their existing (but underloved) Facebook page to attract new audiences or increase awareness of their business. They want to use social media, but they don’t want to invest the time in it. They dress this up as not having enough time, you know because they are busy running the business.
Time scarcity affects most people in the business world, yet every single person on earth has the same amount of time within which to do stuff. And whilst I have never met anyone who has less or more than 24 hours allotted to them – ever, I have met and worked with people who appear to just get so much more done. Their secret – they prioritise their time, have some sort of process in place and then just get on with it.
So what’s the secret to managing social media marketing and having enough time? Well, quite simply it’s by putting a little bit of time in up front.
Here are 4 simple tips to help you manage your social media marketing.
Schedule it into your working week
Just as you would schedule time to check stock, hold staff meetings, speak with suppliers or balance the accounts you need to allocate time each week to market your business – and this includes your social media marketing. Social media is a serious small business marketing tool and should be treated as such.
Develop a strategy
Social media marketing, like any marketing without a plan, is just going to suck the time out of your day. Starting a task without a clear idea of what you are trying to achieve will result in you spending time fluffing around and doing stuff that is a complete waste of time. So develop a social media strategy to help keep you focussed on why you are using social media to market your business.
Create a content schedule
Spend around 30 minutes each week mapping out what you are going to focus on and post over the coming week to meet your strategic goals and not only will you stay on track, you will also get your time back. You can do this in excel or use a number of tools available online, such as CoSchedule. This can all be done at home in front of the television after the kids have gone to bed and you are nursing a glass of wine if you’d like.
Use scheduling tools
If you are able to, follow on from your content schedule time by pre-loading all your tweets or posts into a scheduling program like Hootsuite or Buffer.(there are many others, but these both have a free option). Once you have pre-loaded your weekly content, all you will need to do each day is check for comments or questions so you can respond. Even if you are only able to load 50% of the content ahead of time, all of a sudden you have reduced the time you will need to invest during the week by 50%.
As I have said before, if you don’t have time to market your business then you shouldn’t be in business, and with social media playing a crucial role in marketing in the 21st century – if you don’t want to make the time to manage it, then you and your business will suffer in the end.
If you need help getting on top of your social media management contact us, we’d love to help.