Social media time management or “productivizing” our time on networks, like Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram is KEY if we want to get things done while also getting result from online networking.

Small Business Owners Time on Social Media

The simple truth is this: unless you’re someone whose job it is to be on social media {ahem, like yours truly!} you don’t need to be on it all.the.time.

Your job is to be working on your business and in your business, doing the things you do the best – creating, teaching, consulting, buying, selling.

But Prerna, you say, being on social media IS also important for me, right?

Yep, it is.

So that is why I’m sharing 6 time management tips to help you get the most out of social media without spending so much time on it that nothing else gets done.

1. Plan, plan , plan

A good plan implemented TODAY is better than a good plan implemented tomorrow.

Start by planning. 

What content will you be sharing every month.

Whether you want to go all out and create a content calendar with the exact updates, or choose themes for every month or even, just decide if the 4 posts you share will be a mix of your blog content, other people’s content, a photo quote and a question or fill-in-the blank… PLAN.

Write it down in a printed calendar, a notebook, an Excel or word file. Take your pick!

2. Invest in tools

Next, to really rock time management… invest in tools, like my personal favorite currently, Bufferapp or the ever-popular Hootsuite.

If you have your updates ready, spend some time every week plugging them into the scheduling tool, so they go out without you having to do it every day.

If you don’t have your updates ready but only broad theme or post ideas, set aside 10 minutes or so every day to plug those posts in at different times and then, forget about it.

But, Prerna, what about interaction and engagement?

THAT is for my next tip.

3. Use timers

Productivity timer

Timers are a GREAT way to spend a set amount of time on social media and step away from it when the timer goes off.

I, for instance, have a 15-minute cap on my personal Pinterest account. I use it to add pins strategically to the boards I want to grow that particular month and “like”, “comment” or “repin” pinners who I want to engage with. Once my 15 minutes are up, I step away.

It takes time {hah!} but once you get into the habit of setting caps on your time and using timers, you will be more focused about your time on social media.

4. Know your goals

Knowing your goals will help you keep them front and center of your social media strategy and prevent you from getting sucked into the vortex of its distraction.

Whether it is building your community or generating more leads or getting visibility as a brand, once you know your goals, it is simpler and easier for you to step back and ask yourself, “Did the time I just spend support those goals?” If not, you know next time, not to do that.

Alternatively, think about those goals BEFORE you power up Facebook or Pinterest and then, get started so that you know what you’re supposed to be doing while you’re on it.

5. Schedule monthly report analysis

How can you keep your eyes on the goal? By studying your monthly reports. Google Analytics is my best friend for deciding strategic goals. I check it pretty much every week, but you don’t have to be so obsessive about it.

Schedule a 30-minute session every month to study your Google Analytics reports to see which social networks are sending you the most traffic and conversions as well. THAT will give you insight on which networks to focus.

It is also, helpful to do this exercise every 6 months especially when you’re a startup because monthly data may not give you much information.

The other reports you need to review are Facebook Insights, Pinterest Analytics and Twitter’s reports so you can see WHICH content is performing the best and resonating the most with your audience. That will help you decide what to post more of and what to scale back on.

Also, take this time to check out the best times to post for your audience and schedule your updates accordingly.

6. Simplify content creation for social media

Finally, simplify your weekly or monthly content creation. There are several ways you can do this:

a) Schedule a chunk of time every month to write and schedule your updates.

Pros: Get everything done in your voice.
Cons: Spend a significant amount of time.

b) Hire a social media manager to create and share on your behalf while you do the engaging.

Pros: Save time on content creation.
Cons: An additional expense and also, chances of getting updates that don’t reflect you, your vision or values.

c) Hire a community manager who’d create, share, AND engage on your behalf while you just pop in whenever you’d like.

Pros: Can really save you time and build your community.

Cons: Can be quite a monthly expense. Average expense can be anywhere from $600/month to $1000 for 3 networks. Yep.

d) Get Social Spread. Seriously. It’s an option that brings the “pros” of all the 3 mentioned above without ALL the “cons” .

Pros:

*Ready-to-use updates that require minimal tweaking to reflect your voice, values and vision.

*Excellent value-for-money. You get a year’s worth of updates for less than $.30/day if you get it anytime else.

*Saves you time. No more thinking what to post or share. You don’t have to waste time thinking of content to plug into your calendar. You just copy-paste. You have a FEAST of updates to choose from. Blog post sharing, other people’s content, quotes, engagement-driven updates, holiday-themed updates, lead generation updates, you get them all. You even get ready-to-use photo quotes to make your life simpler. Tons of time saved.

* A consistent social media presence without the frustration of staring at the screen wondering what should I share or the overwhelm of seeing everyone else post away while your networks lack community because you’re so busy juggling everything else.

Cons: Umm, none. Really, none. Unless of course, you count having extra time to catch up on watching all that backlog of Downton Abbey or Orange is the New Black episodes. 😉

Download your copy of Social Spread now to get more engagement and traffic from social media while saving tons of time as well!