Online marketing can eat up a lot of your time. If you’re like me, you get started on one thing and hours later, realize that you have veered off track and gotten derailed to other stories and posts.
Here’s how you can reduce the time spent on Facebook marketing.
1. Find out the type of Facebook marketing that works for your industry
Different things work for different businesses on Facebook. For some, especially those in retail, direct marketing works best with their Facebook pages being more of advertising than connection.
For other businesses, a soft sell works best and you need to create meaningful connections with your Fans even as you pitch your offers once in a while.
You also need to identify whether a Facebook page will be best for you or maybe what you need is a Facebook group.
This can be a make or break decision because Facebook pages require a lot of work and you’ll also need to pay for advertising to get more visibility.
Groups, however, need more moderation and weeding out of people violating group rules.
2. Have a plan
Have a scheduling calendar with a specific theme for each day. F
or further help, get the Facebook Maintenance Manual and Facebook Marketing Guide from Shortstack and Marketo’s How to Set Up an Editorial Calendar for Facebook. These guides will save you lots of time and stress.
I used Marketo’s guide to coming up with the following calendar:
- Monday: Motivational quote related to business or success.
- Tuesday: Information about business, usually with a link to a useful business article.
- Wednesday: Link to a blog post (this is scheduled automatically from the blog).
- Thursday: Information about business (when possible, I use infographics).
- Friday: Something fun; something to think about over the weekend; or new offers from my business.
While this calendar is not set in stone, it keeps me from neglecting Facebook or spending time trying to come up with posts. You can check out my Facebook page to see how it works.
3. Schedule your posts in advance
I use Pagemodo and Buffer to schedule my posts. Each time I’m online and see something that would be interesting for my fans, I create a post for it on Pagemodo or Buffer and schedule it for the relevant day.
In this way, I have posts for days when I’m too busy or I don’t feel creative. In case some new information comes up in between, I simply go back and change the scheduled post(s).
You can test out both Pagemodo and Buffer by signing up for the free versions.
4. Subscribe to online magazines
Looking for content is a huge undertaking. Find out the top online magazines in your niche and subscribe to them, preferably via Facebook so that you get their new posts via your Facebook feed. This way you will receive content that you can pass on to your fans.
If you see something funny online, share it with your fans too. People like to see the humour behind a business. Just be careful to use humour that is neutral and not offensive to some people, cultures, or religions.
Pagemodo and Linkedin have plenty of content for all niches and you can use these when you’re out of fresh ideas.
5. Combine social sharing tasks
Some experts recommend sharing your posts across all your social media sites in one click using platforms such as Hootsuite and Buffer.
However, I believe that this has the potential to neutralize my message and effectiveness. So I prefer to create unique content for different social media sites, even though I may be sharing the same information. But that is just me…
Here are a few tips:
- Enable sharing of your posts on Twitter by using Click to Tweet in your blog posts.
- Enable Publicize on your blog using these tips from Neil Patel of Quicksprout. This will share your blog posts across different social media the moment you publish the posts.
- Share content across different sites with one click using Hootsuite or Buffer.
- Read this article from Kissmetrics to find out how to increase your social sharing .
6. Use a timer
One of the greatest time management tools that has worked for me is the Pomodoro technique. Here’s how it works:
- Identify the task you want to work on.
- Set a timer for 25 minutes and get started on your work.
- When the timer rings, take a short break (I take 5 minutes) and do something that's not time-consuming e.g walk around the room, do some yoga stretches, or get a cup of tea/coffee.
- After the break, set another Pomodoro (25 minutes) and repeat the process. Mark your short breaks on a piece of paper to keep track of them.
- After four Pomodoro's (100 minutes of work), take a longer break of not more than 30 minutes. I take 15-minute breaks at this point unless it's lunchtime break when I break off for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Using this technique, you can give yourself specific time on Facebook each day and stick to it. With time, you will find yourself being very strategic about what you do on Facebook since your time is very limited.
As I was writing this post, I went to Facebook to get the link for my page and got lost catching up with updates. Luckily, I had set the timer and got back to work when it rang, so I only lost a few minutes instead of hours as would have happened without the timer.
While this article has focused on Facebook marketing, most of these tips can be used to improve for any social media platform you use.
It takes time to get all of them running smoothly, but you’ll never know how it works for you until you get started. So pick the one that you’re comfortable with and implement it today.
Have you gotten a handle on time you spend on Facebook marketing or social media in general? Share what’s worked for you in the Comments section below.
(Image credit: arztsamui at www.freedigitalphotos.net)