3 Guidelines for Scheduling Social Media Posts

If you use a software program or a web-based program to allow you to schedule social media posts in advance, have you thought about how you use the tool? Have you considered whether or not you are posting in a way that will make the most of the tool and help you successfully reach your market?

Most social media scheduling tools let you enter a post, attach media, choose which accounts to post the message to and then schedule a time for it to go live. Social media scheduling can be extremely helpful. It can help you plan ahead when you know you will be out of the office, it can help you keep your accounts active and it can help you plan and strategize.

But, there is a negative side to scheduling your social media posts. If you don’t log in and engage with your market, comment on other content and use live posts, you risk looking too automated and spammy. No one wants to follow a social media account that isn’t useful, is too self-promotional or that doesn’t participate in broader conversations. So how do you avoid this pitfall?

Use it as a Supplement, Not by Itself

Do not attempt to let social media scheduling software do all the work for you. The posts you schedule ahead of time should be supplemental to the posts you write in real time. It is impossible to replace a real person with a robot. Social media is all about talking to other people and responding to real-time events. The only way to do that is to log in on a regular basis so you can have conversations and post the latest information.

Make Sure Your Schedule Matches Your Strategy

If you sit down and create 40 social media accounts all at once, and then let your accounts run on autopilot all month, how can you be sure your posts are in line with your strategy? Of course, if you have a long-term strategy, you may be able to ensure this from the very beginning. But, chances are your strategy ebbs and flows, so you will need live interaction in your social media accounts to help you carry through with your social media marketing strategy.

Write Posts that Sound Real

When you use a scheduler, make sure the posts you create sound real and reflect your brand. If your scheduled posts stand out from all the rest, it will be very obvious that they are automated and they may even seem spammy. Use natural language and write posts the way you would if you were writing real-time posts.

Another way you can make sure your scheduled posts sound real is to share other peoples’ content through them. Don’t make all your scheduled posts self-promotional. Sharing others’ content makes your posts look more natural and benefits your accounts overall.

Using software that lets you schedule social media posts in advance can be very helpful, but it can also be detrimental to your social media marketing strategy if you don’t use the tools correctly. Use automated posts as a supplement to regular posts, make sure your scheduled posts are in line with your strategy and never use scheduling software to spam your followers.