10th May, 2013

There are some great social media tools out there which allow you to plan, schedule and execute a social media campaign. So you’ve got your three month content plan in place and you know what you want to say, on what day and what time. Now for the easy part…

What Social Media Tools Are Available?

Hootsuite is a great tool in which you can use once you have got your content plan in place. It has capabilities which allow you to monitor and engage efficiently and effectively. For the full package, at $9.99 a month, the tool is well worth the money for organisation and planning, which are the fundamentals of any marketing activity. In the top left corner, you will have a compose bar which allows you to write and edit your messages. If you want to attach a link from a particular page of your website or someone else’s website, you can add a link into the ‘shrink URL’ box, click shrink, and it creates it for you (this allows more typing characters when on Twitter for example). After that you will assign your message to all the platforms which you want to share across, add your date and time and you’re ready to go. As well, it’s worth noting that once you have typed your message you can set a time and date for the future, then save that message as a draft if you’re unsure on something or there are areas that need to be approved.

social engaging

With all of this in mind, you effectively can tweet in your sleep! (if you want to that is).  Once all is planned and scheduled, next is the easy part, monitoring, responding, engaging and then analysing at the end of your campaign. The layout is simple, you can view in the ‘streams’ tab, all your social media platforms i.e. Facebook, Twitter etc. You can respond to all your messages and comments from Hootsuite, to save you going back into your individual platforms.

After you’ve monitored your campaign, the next stage is to analyse and review. In-built into Hootsuite are great analytics, you can see which messages and links get the most clicks and engagement. This can be useful for the future if your company is ever struggling with new ideas to engage online, you can refer back to your old posts and say “well this message worked at this time to this link”.

Targeting On Twitter

In order to get your Social Media Campaign up and running through Twitter in particular, you must first start with the research. Who are you trying to target? In what location? In what industry? A lot of companies fail at their first attempt in Social Media due to the fact that they write and share information which is  irrelevant to their target audience’s location or interests.

A great tool for ticking all those boxes before you start sharing is Socialbro. This tool allows you to filter through your current following or followers to the entire world of Twitter. Therefore, all the messages you create along with the links to whatever you want is focused and targeted, so you don’t have to worry about whether people are paying attention or not, because you know that the majority of your following are relevant to your business area in one way or another. There is a search bar which allows you to select the whole of Twitter community – this is every single user on Twitter straight to your screen. What you can do is select time zones, languages, users, profiles, country, gender and specific words within their biography to widen your target. This aspect of the tool in particular is great for searching who to follow. If someone you want to follow is within the same industry as you, it’s likely that they might follow you back.  As well as this your messages that you schedule in Hootsuite will be on theme to their interests.  Socialbro gives you a completely different outlook on how easy targeting your audience is, it’s made identifying your influencers easier which then increases engagement activity.

social networks finger point

It’s all good knowing the people that you want to target, but what if the people you’re trying to connect to aren’t listening? You have to make sure that the times in which you tweet have purpose. In built into Socialbro is a ‘Best time to tweet’ which shows you a graph (see below, socialbrobesttiemtweetshot) of when your following is mostly online. The tool generates a report in which it shows you when a percentage of your followers are online according to times of the day.  You can then keep this in mind for when you’re scheduling in Hootsuite. Not only then will your following and followers be within your business area, but you’ll be tweeting at the right time and scheduling in advance. Finally, this powerful tool allows you to see what your followers are talking about i.e. what the current trends are. Therefore, you’ve got the key phrases and buzzwords which are currently being used and add them into your messages to encourage engagement.

Your Research

It’s up to you whether you want to go down the route of dedicating some time before executing a plan but it’s highly recommended. At least this way you know you’ve done all you can in terms of research and covered all angles of your campaign. Using both these tools should give you a much better insight into who you’re targeting, at what time, at what location, with what interests and what day of the week.

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