How to Schedule a Week’s Worth of Social Media Posts in 30 Minutes
A big complaint that I hear from authors about social media is how much time it takes. They don’t want to waste what little time they do have on social media when they could be writing.
So imagine their surprise when I tell them that I spend no more than 30 minutes per week posting to social media. And about 5-10 minutes total each day day responding to comments, liking posts and engaging with my audience.
Social media is very important to grow your audience, but it doesn’t need to take over your entire day.
I’d like to share my process so you can easily schedule your own social media posts ahead of time and be more productive.
So here’s what I do:
Step One: Outline My Buckets
Last week I shared my approach to creating content buckets to make creating content for social media so much easier. Our personal content buckets currently consist of our blog posts, an informational tip, and a quote from another author.
When I first started this process I would take a piece of paper and write out each day of the week and list which content bucket would go for each day. As you’re starting this process, that might be helpful for you to do as well.
Step Two: Collect My Content
What many people don’t know is that you can reuse content that you’ve already shared. We have blog posts that we wrote three years ago that are still relevant and helpful today, so we recycle that content. That is how you keep your blog posts alive and continue to drive traffic back to your website. I try to write a new blog post once a week, but we also reuse posts that we have shared before.
The reason why I do this is that a) not everyone always sees the content you share, b) your audience is growing so it is still new and relevant to those people, and c) many times, if it has been a while, people forget that they have seen it.
So in planning out my content for the week, I know that I will have a new blog post, and then I’ll pick 2-3 older posts that I haven’t shared in the last few months. I’ll record those on my list next to the day it will post.
Then I go into those blog posts or something else that I’ve written to find some good pull quotes to share as information tips. It’s a great way to tie the information from the blog together with the content I’m sharing on social media.
And finally, I’ll Google some inspirational or motivational author quotes to fill in the remaining days.
So now I know exactly what I’m going to post each day of the week.
Step Three: Create Images
Creating images is my favorite part of the process because it allows me to get creative and use one of my favorite apps: Adobe Spark.
If you have found another resource like Canva or Pic Monkey that you like, feel free to use that. But I highly favor Adobe Spark because it’s everything that you need with no added or hidden costs. And they make it so easy to create fantastic images. Plus it’s FREE!
I do want to encourage you in the fact that your images don’t have to be perfect. In fact, they don’t have to be perfectly styled or follow an exact look to be successful. It does take some time to figure out how you want your images to look, but experiment and have fun.
Step Five: Write Captions
There are two schools of thought when it comes to how long your captions should be. Obviously on Twitter you are limited to a certain character count, but on Facebook and Instagram you have more space.
Here’s my thoughts on how long your caption should be: you have to see what works best for you and your audience. For our posts, a short paragraph works best. But for one of ours clients, their audience responds more to longer captions and explanations to their posts.
Experiment with your posts and see what your audience responds to.
You will also want to add hashtags to your captions. Something that you can do to save you time is research a core group of hashtags that you will want to include in your posts, as well as some others that pertain to what you’re writing about.
Having a great list of hashtags is a huge timesaver. Lucky for you we have a free download of over 130 hashtags that work best for authors, so we’ve got you covered there!
Step Five: Schedule Posts
Once my images are created, it’s time to schedule my posts to a social media management tool. If you don’t already use a tool like this, prepare for your life to change! This is going to make your life ten times easier.
I favor and recommend a service called Buffer. It’s easy to use, it does a great job, and they have free options available. But there are other services like Hootsuite, Later, or Agorapulse that you can check into as well.
I have my posts scheduled to go out at the same time every day because I’ve found what time works best for our audience. On your Facebook Page or Instagram Insights (if you have a business account) you can access your insights to see when your audience is active, showing you the best time to schedule posts. But in general, noon in your timezone is a great time to get you started, since a lot of people check their feeds during their lunch break.
Because I know that my posts are scheduled for the same time every day, I also know when I should hop on to social media to reply to comments or engage with my readers. Replying to comments in a timely fashion plays a huge role in increasing your visibility.
And that’s it! You’re ready for the week! As you go through this process you’ll find it gets easier and you will get through it quickly.
If you want to learn how to find your ideal readers, create a manageable and powerful marketing plan, create a year’s worth of content, and create a seamless and timesaving process to get more done in less time, sign up for our new course The Mixtus Method. It’s a game changer! Click here to learn more!