Being present on social media is no longer an option these days, it’s a must. The trouble is, many small businesses find social media management overwhelming and very time consuming. If you can’t afford to hire someone to manage your accounts full-time, there are some hacks and tools you can use to help you maintain your social presence (and grow your audience). As an added bonus, a lot of them are free!
We’ve rounded up our top social tools to get your social game to the next level.
Google Analytics isn’t your typical social media management tool but it’s definitely one of the most helpful. Looking into analytics is incredibly important. Knowing what your audience is reading, what they are interested in, and how they are getting to your website is essential information for content planning and audience growth.
It can also help you understand what platform you should be focusing on. To start, look into what social platforms you are getting the most traffic from. This can be found on the right side bar under the Acquisition section. Once there, click on ‘Channels’. Here you’ll see ‘Social’ as one of the traffic drivers to your website.
Take a look at all the platforms that show up. Which platforms bring you the most traffic? Which ones have the highest time on page? The lowest bounce rate? These metrics will give you a good idea of where you should be spending your time. For example, if you’re getting more value from Facebook than switch your focus away from Twitter and LinkedIn. There’s not much point in wasting time if you aren’t getting the results you want.
When it comes to scheduling posts, Hootsuite is a great free option. You can schedule all of your social accounts here: LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Google+. While there are a few limitations with the free version (you can only use and schedule 3 accounts), it’s enough to get you started.
Set aside some time every week to pre-schedule your social media posts. Setting up posts allows you to get your voice out there without having to be physically present. After all, being active on social media is the most important part.
Having eye-catching images on social media is key to engaging with your audience, especially on platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. Most of the images you see on Pinterest with those cool text overlays in different fonts and styles aren’t created by graphic designers. They are created using platforms like Canva.
Canva is completely free (unless you want to upgrade to certain layouts or use certain images). There are so many different formats and layouts you can choose from that you may not need to upgrade. The people at Canva have also given you sizing templates based on the requirements of each social platform. This way you don’t have to waste time figuring out ideal sizing and formatting.
When it comes to sharing links on social media, nothing is worse than putting in a link that takes up 6 lines. Not only will you get less people clicking on your link, it makes your post look cluttered and unprofessional. Bit.ly was created as a way to solve that problem. It’s totally free and you can track the analytics of your link once you’ve shared it.
While Bit.ly might not directly save you time on the surface but it does help you analyze the URLs you are posting to see what people are more likely to engage with.
If Pinterest is on your list of social media platforms to focus on for your business (it should be if you create original content), then Tailwind is a must-have. Tailwind helps you pin images to your profile at optimized times. You can start with a free 30-day trial.
The best thing about this platform is that you can get away with doing this once a month. Bulk upload all of your images in one day and share them throughout the entire month. Your Pinterest profile will look as if you’re active everyday even if you haven’t touched it in a month. This is one of the best ways to grow followers and engagement.
When it comes to social media, the more time you spend on it, the bigger your audience will grow and the more engagement you’ll get. Hopefully you find these platforms as helpful as we do.
Want to learn more? Download our free eGuide, Building your employer brand with social media, for more on how to use social media to build your employer brand (and recruit top talent). Here’s a sneak preview: