Before social media, brands needed to engage the services of a publisher to share their news. Today, brands are in the hot seat, and social media publishing is at their fingertips. But what is social media publishing?
It’s more than just hitting publish!
Social media publishing is the process of strategizing, planning, creating, scheduling, and distributing your social media content across a variety of social media platforms, forums, and blogging sites.
In this article, I’m going to share different types of social media publishing and the best ways to streamline and simplify your workflow.
The idea of distributing content in all directions and capturing multiple audience demographics is highly appealing. But it doesn’t just happen by hitting a button.
There are some fundamental basics.
Plan your social media content
Your content planning needs a calendar (ideally one that allows you to input actual posts). Doing so allows you to plan for the different types of content to include. That could be trending days, new products, company announcements, or curated content.
A social media calendar also allows you to plan out the accompanying designs, videos, and GIFs that will make your content pop. Ideally, you will publish different content for each channel tailored to the demographic of the audience there.
Some social media platforms offer native tools for scheduling content. Native tools can be fine for small businesses that only have one Facebook profile and one LinkedIn page. But sitting and manually publishing each post to multiple platforms and accounts often isn’t an option. That is especially true for large companies, marketing agencies, and freelancers with numerous accounts. The time taken just to log into each platform would be immense.
Instead, you need a social media publishing tool that can handle multiple posts, social media channels, and accounts. Agorapulse allows you to easily select a social media platform, time, and date, and add images and videos.
You can also choose additional publishing tools like DLVR (an RSS syndication tool). This will pump out content from any site with an RSS feed onto your social media channels. Due to the fast nature of the posts, it’s better suited to fast moving timelines like Twitter. This is not your content, so be sure that you trust the site and its content before you add a feed.
Include user-generated content
Dlvr is a form of UGC (user-generated content). It is content that you shared but didn’t create. There are pros and cons to including other people’s content in your strategy. The biggest benefit is that social campaigns that incorporate UGC see a 50% lift in engagement.
I usually do include UGC, but I make sure it isn’t a direct competitor or someone with a record of putting out controversial content.
In practical terms, UGC on your platforms can be a retweet, clipped post, a quote from an influencer, or a photo you’re tagged in and reshare.
- BuzzSumo has a range of tools that allow you to view content that is popular, top influencers, trends and keywords. This is not a publishing tool as such, but you can utilize it for finding great UGC.
- Olapic pulls brand-related visual UGC content from Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube. Easily collect and curate real customer photos, reviews and comments to use in your social media content or website. Fashion brands like ASOS sweep social media feeds for matching images to show you how their clothes look on real people. This can be a really strong prompt to push purchases.
One of the challenges with social media publishing can be understanding which channels to focus on and what content to put on them.
Most brands we work with at Contentworks Agency were copying and pasting the same content to Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and anywhere else they could think of. That’s why we devise a multi-channel strategy to differentiate content on each channel and maximize audience reach.
As an example:
- Blog–Long-form content that explains your products, answers FAQs, shares news and inspires readers. Will have options on it to promote social sharing.
- Email–Integrate your emails with your social media channels to drive engagement and increase fans. You can do this by collating your most popular posts in an email and linking to them. This can all be part of your social media publishing strategy.
- PR–If you’re publishing PRs on other sites you will want to maximize their value by sharing them on your channels. But choose which channels to share them on.
- Facebook–Shares blog content, special offers, and events
- Twitter–Pumps out relevant sector news, polls, and hashtag trends
- TikTok–Shares fun, non-salesy short videos about funny problems or company culture
- LinkedIn–Can share the previously mentioned TikToks as well as job opportunities, corporate social responsibility, and company news.
- Instagram–Requires great images and photos, so if you’re publishing together with Facebook remember to include them. Captions can be much longer and include more hashtags.
- YouTube–Videos can be embedded in your company blog or shared to social media to increase their reach
Be sure to also dig into the analytics to see whether your social media ROI is worth it.
Establish a consistent publishing schedule
Nothing alienates social media fans faster than an erratic posting schedule.
My pet peeve is a brand that posts nothing for a week and then floods my feeds with hundreds of posts. I have other interests you know!
By utilizing a social media publishing tool like Agorapulse, you can spread out your content, alternate between different types of material, and also see when your fans are online to fine tune the publishing. This will be different for each sector and platform.
For example, our Contentworks Agency Facebook page has the most fan activity at 9 AM and 11 PM on Mondays and 5 PM on Tuesdays. So, we publish the content then. It’s so simple. And with Agorapulse, I can schedule, queue, and repeat my content. So, a post on Monday at 9 AM can be repeated for the transatlantic 11 PM crowd. And with a scheduling tool like Agorapulse, you can schedule posts for any time zone!
Manual social media publishing can be tedious. It can also be haphazard, inaccurate, and prone to errors. By planning and automating this process of social media publishing, you gain time and sanity in addition to the ability to focus on strategy, analysis, and accurate reporting.
Get started on publishing your social media content! Check out our free trial of Agorapulse to help you schedule, track, and measure all your social media efforts.