Tools to Create An Effective Social Media Strategy - Part 1 - Buffer

If you are leading (or part of) an organization or trying to grow and build your own brand it is no guess that social media will be a core responsibility and should be in the front of your mind daily. However, I’m sure if you are like me, someone who is trying to grow their personal brand everyday, you have questions. Do any of these sound familiar?  

  • Am I using the right tools?
  • Am I dedicating enough time?
  • Am I dedicating too much time?
  • How can I tell my story better while being more efficiently while remaining real and authentic?

First off, it’s ok to have questions like these. Even though I eat, sleep, breathe social media and help organizations find the best way to tell their story, I battle with making sure I tell my story and my company's story well while juggling multiple platforms.  

So, I decided, let’s share the tools I use day in and day out that may help you. This is part 1 in a 5 part series to help you level up your social media game right now.

As a professional digital storyteller and content creator, I understand how social media allows organizations to connect more effectively with their customers. And with a good social media strategy, these connections can turn into lasting relationships that turn into real marketing value, especially long term.

But a good strategy certainly does not have to be a difficult one. Therefore, in this series, I am going to introduce five apps that help – the organizations I work with, as well as my own professional brand – create a flawless social media strategy.

In this article, however, I will first present Buffer because it does such a good job creating and curating content – the key to a good social media strategy. You can learn why I switched from Hootsuite to Buffer back in 2011 in this post I wrote two years ago.

Buffer - Social Media Scheduler

What It Does:

Ever wonder how large organizations such as Humans of New York, TED-Ed, and Forbes are always present on your News Feed with a different post every hour?

This is probably what you have in mind:

However, no one would or even should be manning the computer all day and clicking the share and submit button whenever the clock strikes. That’s exactly what Buffer can help with. Simply put, Buffer is a social media scheduler which allows users to schedule (with several variations) ahead when a specific content should be released on their desired social media platform(s) (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn...).

How It Helps:

With Buffer, all you need to do is create a custom schedule of promoting content, and Buffer will automatically release each content according to your ideal Buffer Schedule. In a one-day interval, Buffer permits users to create up to 25 time slots —enough to share one content every hour! Especially useful on Twitter considering the speed and “shelf-life” content has. But be careful, make sure you read the new Twitter algorithm update and how it will affect users timelines.

If your goal is to maximize post views, Optimal Timing Tool available on Buffer can identify when the audience in your targeted geographic destination is more likely to engage with the content, thereby helps you to come up with a better schedule.

The Analytics option in Buffer also shows how many clicks, retweets, reach, and potential reach each post receives. These charts and graphs can easily be exported, providing great data for your business or your boss/client.

What’s best is that having Buffer, all these tasks don’t have to be a one-person job. Buffer Schedule can be shared among users which makes the work more collaborative. Members of a team can directly add content and change schedule anytime. This function eliminates sending emails back and forth between co-workers and provides a separate platform focusing solely on creating and curating content.

There is also one added convenience where users can save Buffer on their toolbar to bookmark pages and posts they come across elsewhere--without opening a separate browser for Buffer. These contents will then be added directly to the app. And on Buffer Feed (my favorite), users can automatically see new posts from the websites they’re interested in which cuts down the time searching for content considerably.

My Personal Tip

You want to get the most life out of your content whether it be an article, video, or image. Therefore, if a piece of content is especially important, sharing it multiple times throughout the week (on Twitter), the month (on Facebook & Linkedin) preferably with different imagery, will target more viewers. Remember though, just because you can automate your content distribution, spend the extra few minutes on creative - try using a different image, quote, and especially mix up the post copy.

Creating and curating content connects with your audience and helps paint the picture about your organization. Therefore, a tool like Buffer is so important; it keeps the task clean and efficient with more cost effective and much less time consuming.

*This post is not sponsored. I truly believe in Buffer, their team, and how they are evolving their platform. It has been one tool that has stuck with me since I switched in 2011.

Written by: Kevin O'Connell