Being successful on social media is all about posting intentional and strategic content in a systematic and timely manner. Scheduling and automating your posts will not only save you time, it’s also essential if you want to make sure you’re consistently providing valuable content and efficiently managing your social media marketing strategy. There are a lot of great social media apps and tools out there, depending on your social media platform and budget, and I've put together a list of my favorite ones for you!
ifttt.com is a fantastic tool for helping you automize your social media marketing strategy and it’s completely free! It basically lets you set up automatic posting from one of your social media accounts to another. For example, I’ve got it set up so that when I post on Instagram it will automatically post my image to my Twitter account and Facebook page along with my caption. There are literally hundreds of different “recipes” you can set up, so definitely check it out for yourself!
Recurpost is a social media scheduling tool for Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. They offer a free plan which lets you connect up to 3 social profiles and schedule up to 100 monthly posts. The best thing about it, however, is that it automatically reuses your old content so you never have to worry about running out of posts without realizing it, or having to constantly update your schedule! You can create different “content libraries” and decide how to schedule the content of each category to your various social media platforms. Being able to choose whether to publish content on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis gives you full control over how much content you post onto each network. You can choose specific times to publish your content or use Recurpost's auto-scheduler which automatically chooses the best time to post every day. It even provides an analytics tool so you can see what’s working and what isn’t.
Facebook actually has an inbuilt scheduler which you can access by going to your business page under “Publishing Tools”. It allows you to upload images, write your captions and schedule your future posts and will upload these at the time and date you set. It’s super easy to use, it’s completely free and rumor has it that Facebook favors those who use their inbuilt scheduler rather than third party tools. In my opinion, 3 reasons to use this tool to schedule your Facebook posts. I have, however, experienced some problems when scheduling posts in bulk, so I would personally recommend you to schedule no more than 20 posts at a time.
Hootsuite is a scheduling tool that lets you manage multiple social media accounts all in one place (including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, WordPress and Foursquare), and it's completely free for up to 3 accounts. It's a dashboard that allows you to easily overlook any combination of streams including clients, competitors, hashtags, followers, competitors, etc. (danay.net). It's especially useful for those who follower Twitter lists and hashtags or keywords. I wanted to include Hootsuite in this list as it's a very popular scheduling tool, and a great, free option for personal accounts. If you're interested in a full review of Hootsuite, check out this post by Danay!
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We know that Pinterest’s algorithm favors active users. It is recommended to pin a minimum of 30 pins a day, and preferably not all at the same time! Doing this on a daily basis is quite time-consuming, so I recommend 2 different scheduling tools: BoardBoster and Tailwind.
I have used both in the past and think that both are excellent and effective scheduling tools, they just differ a little in the features they offer.
BoardBooster's best feature (in my opinion) is the “Looping Tool”, which basically repins your older posts to the top of your boards and automatically deletes duplicate posts, so you don’t actually ever have to actively schedule new content. You should know that your boards should each have a minimum of 100 pins for the looping tool to work best. Otherwise, you’re constantly repinning the same content which can be seen as spamming. BoardBooster also has a tool called Pin doctor which checks your boards for broken pins and duplicate pins. This is a great tool if you want to clean up your boards!
If you want to try it out for yourself, you can by signing up here, plus you'll get your first 100 Pins for free!
Tailwind, on the other hand, is Pinterest’s official partner. Its best feature is that it automatically optimizes your pinning schedule based on when your audience is most engaged. It also allows you to schedule pins in bulk as well as share the same pin to multiple boards, which makes your content creation super quick and easy. Tailwind doesn’t allow you to automatically repin the same pins like BoardBooster, so you do have to manually schedule your pins, but like I said it works in a way that you can literally schedule hundreds of pins within minutes.
You can try Tailwind out for yourself, receive your first month for free (including 100 free pins), and get a credit of USD $15 if you decide to sign up for one of their paid plans.
Both tools are fantastic and I have used both of them myself. If you’re rather new to Pinterest and are trying to grow your Pinterest account, I would recommend you to use Tailwind. However, if you already have a lot of boards and pins and are simply trying to automate your pinning I would say that BoardBooster and its looping tool is perfect for you.
Buffer is a great all-rounder! Being available on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram, means that you can easily schedule your posts across your multiple social media accounts from one place. Buffer offers a browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari which allows you to easily schedule content from any website or within the various social media apps (you can use it to retweet Tweets, which is awesome!). Another great feature is its “Optimal Scheduler” which analyzes and determines the best times to post, allowing you to maximize exposure and engagement. Trust me, it really works! Buffer offer a free plan that lets you schedule up to 10 posts. Depending on your social media marketing strategy, the free plan might work fine for you, but if you’re planning on scheduling a higher volume of posts I’d recommend their “Awesome Plan” which costs $10.00/month and gives you 100 posts.
Plann: Instagram is all about creating a consistent and beautiful feed, and with Plann it’s never been easier to achieve this. Similar to other social media apps it allows you to schedule future images and captions, but what’s so great about Plann is that it’s a visual planner: it allows you to upload the images you’re planning on posting and simply drag and drop them to preview what your feed will look like! Similar to most other apps, it will send you a push notification when it’s time to post, and you simply copy and paste your caption to publish it along with the post. It costs $9.00 to initially download the app, but there are no monthly fees and you can schedule up to 120 posts ahead of time. Quite honestly, the best $9.00 I’ve recently spent!
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The two big players you might have heard of: MeetEdgar and CoSchedule. Both are fantastic online tools that let you schedule future content on multiple social media platforms - all at one time and from one place. They will also reschedule your old posts allowing you to promote your former content again and again, which is a great social media marketing strategy (and let’s be honest: it makes your business that more efficient!). MeetEdgar starts at $49/month and CoSchedule at $15/month. Even if you can’t afford to spend such amounts on social media scheduling at this time, I would still recommend that you sign up for their newsletters; both companies provide very useful and valuable information in each of their newsletters that help you manage and grow your social media accounts.
What are the favorite scheduling and automatization tools that help you implement your successful marketing strategy? Let me know in the comments below!
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Now tell me in the comments below, what's your favourite social media app or tool?