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  • Writer's pictureRosie Fay

Social Automation: Staying offline in an online world

Ah, COVID. The fun little pandemic that’s affected everyone and everything. I feel like we’ve all been put through one of those horror time-warp tunnels, scrambling and frantic.

It’s the topic of almost every news story, social post and conversation, I feel we all have heard how it’s affected our friends, family and strangers. Humans as we are, we do tend to focus on the negative side of things, and everything we ‘couldn’t do’ in 2020. We have had a lot of our freedoms taken away and plans now can’t even be set in concrete for fear of further changes to the system.

How do you keep yourself offline?

As a result, we’re all mostly online now. There’s been a 70% increase of screen time over the past 6 months. As we’re stuck inside, working remotely, video calling, and generally trying to keep sane – we turn to our little worlds. Our online worlds. Further to this, we’re also becoming painfully aware of how much we rely on the world wide web. With documentaries like ‘The Social Dilemma’, medical professionals telling us to switch off, and screen time reminders – it’s a guilty loop.

So how do we keep updated on the markets, if we feel guilty every time we turn on a screen? How do you sell to your customers, when they’re so overwhelmed?

The answer lies in your scheduling and automation.

In 2020, you can automate almost everything. I’m going to focus on your Social Marketing. There’s no such thing as a diverse marketing budget anymore. With the loss of television ads, the move to ad-free music streaming, and print media suffering each year – your budget is primarily digital. You set your website up when you started your business, paid a hefty fee, and now it runs in the background. Your socials are what you keep updated.

Before & After: Feed Automation

Posts need to go up regularly, and depending on the nature of your own business, that will determine if it’s a daily post or a weekly post. Either way, it’s gotta be done. Your followers are your customers. Your customers are the sole source of Word-of-Mouth. With Social Media, that becomes as simple as sending a post to a friend. Viola, a new lead.

If you’ve never looked into developing a Social Media strategy before, the first thing we need to do is look at your product and your customers. Truly identify who you are speaking to, and the language they like to hear. Do you have Gen Z customers, who hate capitalism, have odd senses of humour, and can read through a lot of online jargon? Or do you have Boomers, who don’t like social media but have it to keep up with their kids?

Do your customers like being spoken to as a friend? Professionally? What are they using your product for? How much is your product? Can get they get it cheaper anywhere else? What are your competitors offering that you’re not?

Once you have this report, we can develop your strategies. Move into the visual space. Identify colour schemes, do you some stock images or product images? Maybe lifestyle shots. Anything that shows your start-up in the best light. If you’ve spent all this money getting it started, why not show it off?

Done – we have your data. We have your visuals. Now, we plan.

If you’re not outsourcing your social management - there are a lot of online sites right now to help you. These sites are mostly free to use and provide you with both visual and text planning. Some of my favourite sites are:

They all have different layouts and different prices, but the features remain generally the same across all sites. Your best bet is to click on and do some research to find the one you most like.

By automating your social feeds, it can churn in the background whilst you get back to your families, your staff members and your revenue. Scheduling takes anywhere from 4-8 hours a day, and you can plan for up to a month in advance. Automation can be linked to your Twitter, Instagram or Facebook – even all three at the same time, if that’s how you prefer.

Once the posts go up, responding and interacting with your customers take about an hour for each post. You have a lot more energy interacting if you haven’t spent the last hour painstakingly choosing images and writing captions.

Pints in the sunshine with Frank the pup in Manchesters NQ
Automation gives you more freedom

By automating your feeds, you keep your communication strong with your consumers, whilst still enjoying your free time. Your customers are consistently updated about your presence and your new ventures. In turn, you are always in the forefront of their mind when they need your product.

Now your social feeds are up and updating frequently, we look into follower data reports and social campaigns. But that’s a blog post for a different day.

Until next time.

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