At its very core, social media is interactive. It is equal parts listening and sharing. One online source explains that social media is dedicated to integration, content sharing and collaboration.
The very nature of social media seems to negate automation. But, in the busy lives of today’s professionals, some posting and tweeting has to be automated by necessity.
In this post, we ask the question, “How much social media automation is too much?” For many businesses, there is a fine line between too much and too little. There’s also a great deal of disagreement between social media professionals.
The bottom line: maintain the human factor in your business’ social media efforts for the best results.
Does this mean automation is ok? Yes. Does this mean too much automation can be detrimental? Yes. Let’s explore how much social media automation is too much and how to keep the human factor in your business’ social media outreach.
When Automation is Okay
For business owners, social media automation is a life-saver, especially when it comes to posting from a monthly scheduled content calendar. This content, the text and images that you create and plan for works great with automation tools. It helps keep you consistent with your branding and your message.
Ways to Use Automation
Social media automation is a must when you’re going on vacation or out of the office. Since social media never takes a vacation, automation makes it easy for you to plan ahead.
You can use automation to fill your monthly or weekly content calendar. Automation tools also help you decide the best time to post. Automating your status updates is just fine. Then you can schedule your posting appropriately.
Always add the personal touch to your scheduled posts. You don’t want them to sound automated or robotic. The human, social factor is key.
Ways Not to Use Automation
Don’t make auto direct messages part of your social media strategy. If you do want to use direct messaging, do it on a personal basis to develop a real conversation with your customers.
Don’t use automation to schedule the same posts for all of your networks. Odds are you’re talking to a different audience on each social platform. You want to change your tone depending on the audience.
Also, each platform has its own rules about length, and some features work for some social media platforms and not for others.
Lastly, don’t ever schedule and forget. Keep a watchful eye on the performance of your automated messaging and make adjustments when necessary. This can help you decide what to post in-between your scheduled posts. When you check in regularly, you’re better able to respond to comments and messages.
The Take Away
Much of the social side of social media is lost when it is replaced solely with automation tools. While these tools make your social media manager’s life (or yours, if you are the social media guru in your business) easier, they can completely eliminate the human factor and destroy your business’ customer interactions.
You can automate your posts, but be sure and check in to each of your social media platforms on an ongoing, daily basis to monitor messages, posts and interactions.
Don’t forget the social in social media. It’s imperative to keep it there to develop, grow and nurture your social media audience. Social media is at its most effective when centered on creating lasting relationships with people.
Keep the humanness in your social media efforts, scheduling and automating some posts, while staying on top of comments and messages.
If you don’t have time to schedule and automate your posts, or watch over your social media, we can help.Learn more about our services and how we can create a variety of engaging content designed to help attract followers, website visitors and more.
Image: Bruno Cordioli