Hootsuite, Buffer and Sprout Social are all ways to automate your social media postings. Some folks use it religiously while others use it to supplement when they are not around.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to spot a social network profile that automates its postings. I can spot one from a mile away. Many times they are ugly and a huge turn off. I usually unfollow them. Some common characteristics include:
Having a social network profile with post after post that looks identical is the internet equivalent of having an empty showroom floor: its just a bad look.
Before we get started, lets identify the characteristics of a social network profile that does not automate its posting:
- each post has a different look and feel
- there are different types of posts (questions, pics etc)
- “rich” posts
- there are interactions
- the timing random, not every hour or every 4 hours etc
Next, please note that you cannot fake all of your activity. You can pad some of your posts with scheduled activity, but you cannot fake it.
For starters, put the social back in social network. Tag people in your posts. You don’t have to start a crazy discussion with anyone, but maybe drop a credit to the brand or person that you are citing. If you aren’t around when you reply you can get back to them in a few hours.
Publish more than just articles
Post photos, PDF’s, surveys, videos comments from forums and other stuff. Resist the urge to just post blog posts. That gets real old, real fast.
Markup the hell out of your site
If’ I’ve learned anything in 2015, it is the power of markup. Twitter has its own language that you can easily implement with a few quick HTML tags or plugins like Yoast for SEO. By marking up your posts with image markup, Twitter (as well as Facebook, Google+ etc) will display the image in your post without having to waste precious 140 character real estate.
Timing is everything, or nothing
Mix up the timing of your posts. If you only do 1 post per day, do it at different times. ABT = always be testing. If you are a larger brand and post many times per day, try to make it so it doesn’t look like a robot scheduled the posts.
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