Choosing the right social media management software can be a time-saver for your business. There is a lot to consider, in terms of features and how they can help you.
In this post, you’ll discover 5 awesome time-saving productivity features to look for in a social media management tool.
GUEST POST BY MIKE ALLTON | OCTOBER 2, 2019
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A million or more articles have been written about productivity, its pillars and principles, and how to be more successful by optimizing it. Perhaps Tony Robbins describes productivity the best: “Getting the results you want with less time and effort.
When you’re trying to understand how to be productive, what you’re really seeking is a way to achieve your goals while having time to spend on what matters.”
As a business owner, blogger, or entrepreneur, you’re looking to do more with less, so you can focus on the most important stuff.
Social media management software can help you increase productivity in at least one area of your life: social media. Even better, the software can help you to strategize and improve the performance of all your marketing efforts.
However, choosing a tool can be as overwhelming as doing social media itself. To help clarify your decision, look for the following five features in social media management software to increase your productivity.
5 Time Savers to Look for in Social Media Management Software
Before jumping into the 5 “time-savers” to check off in your social media management software of choice, here’s a quick summary infographic to save for later:
Let’s take a look at the 5 top features to consider in more detail:
1: Publish to Multiple Networks
You’ve probably spent entire days on social media by logging into all the different social networks, posting, replying to comments, answering messages, and gathering metrics on your posts. With social media management software, you’ll turn those days into mere hours because the right tool will enable you to track and publish to multiple social networks. And it will be from one place.
That’s right: one dashboard that allows you to connect all of your social networks and post to them simultaneously.
Keep in mind that not all tools publish to all social networks. At the very least, you should be able to post to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. If YouTube and Pinterest are important for your business, find a tool that can publish to those networks. Otherwise, you’re back to the logging-into-multiple-networks cycle, and productivity is lost.
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Instagram Business, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Google My Business, Yelp, and Blogger are the social networks to which eClincher publishes.
2: Social Monitoring and Listening
Two important productivity features of social media management software are the power twins of monitoring and listening. Both features can save you oodles of time while increasing your response rate and overall engagement with customers.
Monitoring with Social Media Management Software
In a nutshell, monitoring enables you to review and respond to engagement from your audience with your brand’s social media profiles and posts. Engagement comes in the form of:
- replies on posts
- direct messages
- mentions of your brand on other users’ posts and comments
- comments on paid social ads.
All of the engagement is compiled for you within the tool—that magical singular dashboard—from which you can review, respond, and, if appropriate, delegate to a team member or employee.
Check-in two to three times a day and truly manage your engagement! Not only are you saving time by having the engagement in one place, you’re also responding to customers and potential customers much more quickly.
Listening with Social Media Management Software
Listening, on the other hand, picks up where monitoring stops by tracking mentions of your business that are not tagged. These are posts and comments on social media that mention your company name, your website, and your blog that you would otherwise not know about. If you’re not tagged, how would you know? With listening, of course. And once you know about the mention, you can respond appropriately.
Another great use of listening is to track hashtags and keywords related to your business. By keeping up with the trends as they apply to your industry, you can create timely content that will drive engagement.
3: Repeat and Queue Posting
You are the expert at your business, and you probably have gobs of content— in the form of blog entries, customer newsletters, and your website pages. The best thing to do with that content is to share it. Enter another pair of powerful features in social media management software: Repeat and queue, both of which increase productivity in publishing.
With Repeat, you tell the tool to publish a certain post again. It could be after a certain amount of time has passed or a specific date in the future. Your content is worth sharing … again and again.
A queue feature helps optimize the timing of your posts. You tell the tool the specific times of the day that you’d like posts to be published, and then you queue up your content. The tool takes care of the rest, filling in your content at the next available time slot.
Both of these features help you to work on other tasks—strategizing, for example—while maintaining a consistent presence on your social networks.
4: Team Collaboration
Have you ever missed a deadline or lost a day because you couldn’t get everyone’s feedback into one document.
Or maybe someone was working on the wrong version of a file?
Yes? Then you understand the importance of collaboration.
If you have a team (even just one other person) and/or clients who need visibility into your social media management, then collaboration-related features are very important. These can include the ability to:
- Create separate user profiles;
- Give varying access and permission levels to different users;
- assign posts/comments to users to be reviewed;
- Add internal notes for users on content and profiles; and
- Track which user posted which piece of content (post, comment, or reply).
Quick collaboration of a team is critical for increasing productivity. Consider your workflow needs when choosing a social media management tool.
Look for collaboration features in your social media management software including features for assigning user roles, assigning tasks, team statistics, team audit trail, publishing workflow, and more.
5: Measure and Report
Business psychologist Peter Shallard has spoken widely about his Four Pillars of Productivity: Specificity, Measurement, Deadlines, and Accountability. It might be second on the list, but measurement is probably the most important.
By measuring your efforts, you can determine what works (and doesn’t) and, in turn, make strategic decisions moving forward. How’s that for an increase in productivity?
To effectively measure your work, choose social media management software that provides robust reporting. Even just the basics—best day and time to post for each social network—can change your level of engagement overnight.
Gone are the days of pulling metrics, post by post, from Instagram and Facebook. The tool’s analytics capabilities will compile everything you need. The reports should be in an easy-to-read format that you can easily share with your manager, your employees, or your clients. A great detractor of productivity is spending a full day creating a digestible report; let your tool do it for you.
Hint: if you’re an agency working with clients, tracking metrics and generating reports is vital. Or, if you’d rather hand off your social media management to an agency, this is a great resource for finding a good one.
For most small businesses managing their own social networks, choosing social media management software that allows for measurement and reports is important. It lets you know what’s working, and not working!
Author Paul J. Meyer once said, “Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.”
He did not say that productivity resulted from spending a ridiculous amount of time doing social media.
With your careful consideration and planning, you will find the right social media management software to increase your productivity, affording you the opportunity to put forth efforts elsewhere.
Need Help Deciding on Social Media Management Software?
Armed with the above feature list, check out the Buyer’s Guide recently compiled by Social Media Consultant Ian Anderson Gray. It includes, among many other features, a side-by-side checklist of 13 tools to help you make the best decision.
Over to You
What Social Media Management Software are you using? What features did you look for when making your decision to go all-in on the tool you are using? Let me know in the comments below.
Mike Allton is a Content Marketing Practitioner – a title invented to represent his holistic approach to content marketing that leverages blogging, social media, email and SEO to drive traffic, leads, and sales. He is an award-winning Blogger (at The Social Media Hat and Blogging Brute), Speaker, and Author, and Brand Evangelist at Agorapulse.