As a social media manager, you have a lot of responsibilities. Your to-do list (develop strategies, create content, analyze data, etc.) is about a million miles long.
So how can you get more out of your social media strategy without adding to your workload? With smart social media management tips, you can accomplish more in less time and achieve the results your team (or your agency clients) want to see.
Let’s look at 17 ways social media managers can publish smarter, from scheduling to social listening.
1. Identify the right platforms for your brand
Whether you’re managing social media for your company or you’re handling strategy for a handful of clients, you’ll want to be choosy about where you post. Sure, you might feel pressure to build a presence on every available social media site. But don’t let FOMO (fear of missing out) compromise your marketing strategy.
Rather than defaulting to publishing on the biggest platforms, find the right channels for your brand. Do market research to learn where your audience spends time, and find where you can forge the most meaningful connections. Consider your social media goals and how each platform can drive website traffic, generate sales, or help you meet other objectives.
Not sure how to get started with market research? Use these tips for learning more about your audience:
- Pew Research Center: This site has lots of current info about social media usage trends. If you’re starting from scratch or rethinking your approach, you’ll want to check here.
- Google Analytics: If your website receives a decent amount of traffic, you can learn a lot about your audience. Check Google Analytics to discover audience demographics, interests, and device usage.
- Customer Surveys: If you’re curious about what your audience wants or how you can reach them most effectively, just ask. Consider sending a poll to your email list to get the scoop directly from your customers.
On that note: What are your team’s social media goals anyway?
If you haven’t set any yet, you’ll inevitably spend a lot of time producing social media content that gets you exactly nowhere.
Deciding on social media goals takes a little time upfront. But once you create objectives for your team, you’ll be able to use your time more efficiently.
Use this quick guide to set SMART goals for your team:
- Specific: Really zero in on your goal to clarify what you want to achieve and why.
- Measurable: Make sure you can quantify your goals.
- Achievable: Choose objectives that are ambitious but within the realm of possibility.
- Relevant: Opt for goals that relate to larger brand or marketing objectives.
- Time-Based: Pick goals that have a time frame, such as this month or this quarter.
3. Optimize your content strategy
Being a successful social media manager doesn’t mean spending your workday posting content. If your strategy centers on publishing posts daily or when they come to mind, you might be wasting tons of time.
A content calendar and a scheduling strategy can save you time and stress.
Creating a content calendar can also help your team keep their eyes on the prize: your social media goals.
Follow these simple steps to draft your content calendar:
- Pencil in major campaigns and seasonal promotions, allowing plenty of time to tease content before the actual event.
- Add in links to content your team wants to promote, such as new blog posts.
- Get the calendar draft approved by your marketing manager to ensure you’ve covered all the bases.
- Develop creative assets, including photos, graphics, and videos.
- Decide which social channels to publish on and create unique copy for each.
You could publish social media content at any time. However, you’re likely to get better results if you post when your audience is online and engaged.
After all, organic reach on social media has been declining for many years. With so many other brands competing for attention, it’s more important than ever to post content at the optimal time.
So when should you publish content?
You can get a general idea from these guidelines for the best time to post on social media.
However, the right time is different for every brand, since it largely depends on your audience.
Here’s how to find the best time to post:
- Navigate to Agorapulse Reports and click on the Global Content tab.
- Scroll down to the Best day and time to publish chart.
- Toggle between Engagement on average and Reached users to use the criteria that matter most to your team.
- Look for the red-orange time slots, which are the optimal times to post.
5. Upload weeks’ worth of content at once
After creating a content calendar, aim to schedule posts at a rate that works for your company. Again, the best posting frequency for your brand depends on a few factors, such as your industry, your goals, and the size of your account.
Although your mileage may vary, it’s still helpful to follow general guidelines like these:
- Facebook: At least once a week and up to once a day.
- Instagram: At least once a week and up to twice a day.
- LinkedIn: Between a couple of times per week and once per business day.
- Twitter: Anywhere from a few to 30 times per day.
- YouTube: About once a week.
Upload posts for a week at a time, or schedule a month in advance.
Planning a big social campaign for next season? Try bulk publishing to schedule all your posts at once.
With Agorapulse, you can upload dozens of posts in a few minutes, saving your team tons of time.
- Navigate to your Agorapulse Calendar and select the right social media profile.
- Bulk upload content via CSV, RSS feed, or a folder of images.
- Review and edit the posts as necessary.
- Confirm the dates and times for each post and then click Schedule.
6. Rethink your content approach
Even if you have a team, creating content isn’t always easy. Repeating the same message constantly probably won’t push you closer to your goals.
But rethinking how you use and find content can make your approach much smarter.
Why post an idea only once? Repurpose your content to get more mileage out of your posts. Publish different edits from a photoshoot to drive your message home. Share your top links regularly, using fresh copy each time. Or repost multiple times to maximize impressions.
When you use Agorapulse to schedule content, resharing content is easy.
Follow these steps:
- Upload your content and select Schedule.
- Choose Republish regularly if you want Agorapulse to automate the schedule. You can decide how often to republish and how many times to reshare the total.
- Alternatively, choose Schedule again to input the exact dates and times you want to repost the content.
7. Curate great content for your audience
Why create all your own content? With smarter sourcing strategies, you can save time and resources. Curate posts from partners and thought leaders to start conversations.
If you already have a reading list or a blog roll that’s relevant to your audience, this process is incredibly easy. All you have to do is pick the best reading material from your list and add it to your calendar.
Not sure what kind of content to curate?
Here are a few tools to manage this type of content:
- BuzzSumo: This tool is designed to identify high-performing content in almost any industry. You can easily find what’s popular so you can share pre-vetted posts with your audience.
- Feedly: With this free tool, you can follow all your favorite blogs. Every time a new post is published, it automatically appears in Feedly. Choose the best ones and bookmark them or store them in folders so they’re ready to go when you’re ready to schedule.
- Quuu: After choosing categories that your audience is interested in, Quuu automatically queues up content for your calendar. You can let it post automatically or vet it yourself and publish manually.
8. Add user-generated content to the mix
Alternatively, source user-generated content from your community to drive engagement.
Chances are your brand has some pretty creative followers who post about their experiences with your products or services. Why not reshare their images or videos (giving the original creator full credit of course)?
When you republish UGC, you get some great benefits:
- You can forge a connection with fans and customers by showing your appreciation and amplifying their content.
- UGC adds a sense of authenticity, which can really resonate with customers. In fact, 90% of people trust UGC when making purchasing decisions.
- Your team can spend less time and money creating original content since you simply have to find and reshare existing content instead.
9. Streamline your visual content
Publishing posts that your audience can’t consume is a recipe for poor engagement. Before sharing those photos or uploading that video, optimize them for your followers.
Planning to share the same image to Instagram and Twitter? Check that you’re using the right image size for each social media platform first—or your audience might miss the most important parts.
Need to edit or optimize images quickly?
You can easily add this step to your publishing workflow in Agorapulse:
- Upload the image you want to post and click Edit image underneath.
- Choose the right ratio for the platform.
- Crop the image so it looks just like you want.
Publishing a video with a great script? Add captions first. As our Social Media Lab proved, adding subtitles on Facebook can boost video views in a big way.
10. Design amazing creatives on the spot
The ability to optimize images for any social media platform without leaving Agorapulse can save your team tons of time. But what if you already resized your graphics – or if you need to spin a new one up quickly?
With Agorapulse’s Canva integration, you can pull in preexisting designs or create one quickly without clicking out of the interface.
Follow these steps
- Navigate to the Agorapulse Publishing dashboard.
- Click the camera icon and select Design with Canva.
- Sign in to your Canva account if you aren’t already, and then start designing. You get access to all the same design tools and uploads that you’d be able to use in the full Canva app. You can even access Canva’s integrations – such as Pexels and Giphy – from this interface.
- If you already designed a graphic for the post, go to Folders and choose the image you want to upload.
- When you’re ready to upload the image, click Publish and continue with scheduling your social media post.
11. Become a social listening master
As a social media manager, you don’t post content in a vacuum.
Keeping track of industry events and brand conversations is an essential part of the job. Staying updated on current events is a breeze, thanks to 24-hour news cycles and trending hashtags.
But to follow company mentions effectively, you need to become a master of social listening.
With Agorapulse’s social listening tool, your brand can easily monitor and join key conversations.
Use the tool to track company mentions on Facebook, so you never miss a shout-out. Create a list of brand or industry hashtags to follow on Instagram or Twitter. Then track and respond to all in one convenient spot.
Agorapulse’s social listening dashboard also makes it easy to do competitive research. Create a social listening search focused on your competitors’ brand names or notable products.
Then check your social listening inbox to see what people are saying about your competitors and get a better sense of customer sentiment.
Agorapulse analytics automatically keeps track of all your social listening searches. You can get a quick glimpse of volume over time, and you can see how branded terms and campaign hashtags have contributed to brand awareness.
Working with a team means you can take your social media strategy further. Yet staying organized and on schedule isn’t always easy.
As a social media manager, you have a zillion moving parts to oversee. You might be scheduling content, reaching out to influencers, and analyzing reports in a single day.
Rather than trying to manage everything, delegate tasks to team members. Need stakeholders to approve posts before they go live? Create your post in Agorapulse’s publisher, and assign it to the right team member for approval.
Any assigned posts won’t go live until they’re approved so you don’t have to worry about publishing mistakes.
If the post needs edits, team members can request them without leaving the Agorapulse app, which helps everyone work more efficiently.
Receive dozens of tweets about product orders each day? Assign them to your customer service team for rapid resolutions. Field tons of rave reviews? Delegate them to your social team for quick responses.
When saving time is a top priority for your team, automatically moderating engagement is a great idea. You can streamline the process with Agorapulse’s Inbox Assistant. This handy tool lets you route action items to the right person automatically.
It also allows you to delete or hide comments on select social media channels, which is important for eliminating spammy engagement.
With the Inbox Assistant, you can also review select engagement automatically so it doesn’t fill up your inbox.
How to create automated moderation rules
- Go to your Inbox Assistant and select a social media profile.
- Click the blue Create a new rule button and assign it a name.
- Set the parameters you want – and note that they vary slightly depending on the social media channel. For example, you can delete select comments on Facebook and Instagram, but you can only assign or review comments on Twitter.
- Decide whether you want to bookmark or label the comments for future follow-up.
- Click the orange Create button to start moderating automatically.
- After creating rules, you can turn them on or off as necessary – just toggle the switch.
14. Create and reuse saved replies
Even after setting up moderation rules, handling social media engagement can still take up a lot of your day. This is especially true if you write custom responses to every DM or message.
Rather than composing every response from scratch, write saved replies that you can reuse as appropriate. If you answer a lot of similar questions or send a lot of general responses–like “Thanks so much for sharing!”–this feature can be a lifesaver.
You can set up saved replies in just a few steps:
- Navigate to Agorapulse’s saved replies dashboard and select a social media profile.
- Click the blue Create a new reply button.
- Name the response and draft the reply using text and emojis. You can type %name% to prompt Agorapulse to include the user’s display name in the response.
- Press the orange Create button to save.
- Then access all your saved replies from the text window of any inbox item.
Keep in mind your team can customize these responses further every time you reuse them. You can add or remove any text before submitting your response.
15. Get to know your fans and followers
If your brand’s social channels get a lot of engagement, it can be tough to keep track of everyone. A username might look familiar, but you might not always remember if they’ve commented before. So how can you build relationships efficiently?
Agorapulse’s social media customer relationship management (CRM) tool automatically keeps track of everyone who interacts with your brand or content.
Any time a user appears in your inbox or in a social listening search, you can click on their profile for more information, including:
- Their complete engagement history with your brand.
- Their profile details, including how many followers they have and where they’re located.
- Your team’s internal notes about the user–which you can add to at any time.
16. Monitor, adjust, repeat
No matter how strong you think your social media strategy is, you’ll need data to prove your case. Check social media reports regularly to monitor analytics. Go beyond vanity metrics, and monitor the KPIs that truly matter to your team.
Then use your analysis to adjust how, what, and when you publish. By monitoring and adjusting weekly, monthly, or quarterly, you can take a smarter approach to social media management.
Whether you want to build brand awareness or driving sales, regular monitoring and reporting can help you continually improve your ROI.
You could check social media analytics and compile reports manually. But why take valuable time to complete a task that you could automate instead?
You can schedule Agorapulse reports to arrive in your inbox every week or month, like clockwork. Just select the profile you want a report for and click the blue Schedule reports button in the upper right corner. Then choose the format, the sections you want to include, and the recipients.
Instead of reporting on each social channel separately, you can create a single document that includes everything that matters to your team.
From your Reports dashboard, click the blue Create a report button and add all the channels and metrics you want. Then opt to receive automated reports to streamline the process.
When you work for an agency, the above tips can help you streamline a lot of your daily tasks. But when you have multiple clients to manage, you need some hacks that go above and beyond.
It can be tricky to find the right level of access to give clients. You might need them to approve social media posts, but you don’t necessarily want them to disrupt your workflow. So what’s the solution?
With Agorapulse’s Shared Calendars, you can keep clients in the loop without inviting them to become overly involved. Shared Calendars let clients see the scheduled and published content for their social profiles. However, they can’t edit posts–unless you’ve assigned items for approval.
Once you invite clients to your Shared Calendars and add them to your approval workflow, Agorapulse keeps track of any conversations you have in the app. That means everyone stays on the same page without having to dig through emails or check Slack yet another time.
Prove your agency’s worth
Whether your social media goals include improving brand awareness or driving clicks, your clients need to know whether you’re achieving them successfully. Demonstrating your agency’s worth often requires a bunch of complicated calculations – but you can let Agorapulse handle some of them for you.
Here’s how to quantify brand awareness and return on investment (ROI) in your clients’ social media reports:
- ROI: What are link clicks, impressions, and engaged fans worth to your clients? Set a value for each in your Agorapulse dashboard, and track the total value automatically in your monthly or weekly report.
- Brand Awareness: Is your team successfully spreading the word about your clients’ brands? Agorapulse’s brand awareness score automatically tabulates metrics like mentions, shares, and select social listening searches.
Manage your team’s time wisely
When you have to divide your team’s time among multiple clients, it’s even more important to ensure that everyone’s spending their time wisely. Is your team handling engagement efficiently? Are you responding to followers and generating conversations?
Agorapulse’s Community Management report automatically tracks these stats. You can even get reports with member-by-member breakdowns so you can see who’s sending the most responses and who replies the fastest. With this data in hand, you can reallocate responsibilities as necessary and ensure that you’re meeting appropriate response timelines for clients.
For savvy social media managers, quality (not quantity) is always the goal—especially when publishing content. Incorporate these tips into your workflow to publish smarter and get more out of your social media strategy.
Take control of your social media! Check out our free trial of Agorapulse to help you schedule, track, and measure all your social media efforts.