The thing about blogging for as long as I have is that the way things work has changed a lot. But one thing that has stayed the same is that social media is absolutely crucial, even if it looks very different now compared to 2013. When I started, for example, Instagram was all about filters and barely used for blogging. That’s extremely not the case now! So while I posted a similar posts a few years ago, today I’m discussing how I manage social media platforms for my blog.
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How I Manage Social Media Platforms
I want to start by talking about what I mean by “managing social media.” I’m talking about having a social media strategy, scheduling posts, spending time focusing on social media even when it’s not directly related to my blog, etc. This can be broken into 2 buckets: promoting blog posts on social media and working on growing my social media. That can be in terms of followers and in terms of building a sense of the Kate the (Almost) Great community and brand.
Promoting blog posts
I’m not going to go super in depth with this because I’ve written an entire post about how I promote my blog posts, but I do want to cover some of the ways I use social media for blog posts.
I’m also a member of multiple Facebook groups for bloggers, in which I promote my new posts as appropriate. My preferred blogger Facebook groups are ones that have designated threads for sharing your posts or networks. Those are ones that I’ve found the most tangible benefit in, especially social media follows and blog shares.
I also schedule social media posts promoting older blog posts on Twitter, Facebook, and Linked In. Every couple of months, I sit down and schedule 1 post promoting 1 different blog post every day for 2ish months. This brings attention to older posts that might get lost, especially as I have over 1,000 blog posts.
I also use the Revive Old Posts plugin, which is a “WordPress plugin that helps you to keeps your old posts alive by sharing them and driving more traffic to them from twitter/facebook [sic] or linkedin [sic]. It also helps you to promote your content. You can set time and no of posts to share to drive more traffic.” This plugin is connected to my Twitter and Facebook.
Social media is a great way to get blog traffic, but that’s really only true if you have a following online. That means that I work on growing my social media networks and building a community within them.
But I have a job and multiple chronic illnesses (which are a job in of themselves), so I can’t spend all day on social media. This means that I spend a few hours over the weekend scheduling a week’s worth of social media posts. Especially those that aren’t promotions of my blog posts, also known as a social media editorial calendar. I stopped doing this a few years ago, but for 5 years I was meticulous about planning and managing my social media. I started doing this again this past October.
Everyday Social Media
On Twitter I daily share: someone else’s blog post, a question to encourage engagement, an inspirational quote, and one of my blog posts. Everyday on Facebook I share one of my blog posts and I alternate sharing other people’s blog posts, a question to encourage engagement, and an inspirational quote (with an image for it). Having an image makes a big different for Facebook compared to “just” text.How one blogger manages her social media platforms Click To Tweet
This plan helps me be more intentional with what I’m sharing, as well as to think more about my cohesive social media presence.
For example, now that this is primarily a health blog compared, I focus more on sharing other people’s posts that are health related. The reason why I share other people’s posts is to help build community by engaging with other health bloggers, especially as I usually tag them when I share their post(s).
I share inspirational quotes so others interact with my content and so I’m not only sharing links to my posts. I ask questions to build community as well as to not solely share links to my posts. (No one wants to follow someone who only ever posts about their own content.) I also use questions to get input from my readers, and at least once a week I ask for blog post suggestions. Sometimes no one responds, but sometimes I get incredible ideas!
I’m now also using my editorial calendars to help track whether or not I’ve made new pins for older blog posts, and every day I promote an older post, I make 1-2 new pins for it. Below I’ll share a quick and easy way to make new pins.
This all also helps build relationships with other bloggers and people following me.
My Favorite Tools to Manage Social Media Platforms
I use Google Sheets for planning my social media editorial calendar. I use 1 tab for Twitter, 1 for Facebook, and 1 for miscellaneous posts. Then, once a week, I sit down to batch write this content and batch schedule it in Buffer. I use 1 column each for the category, date, post text, post link, how an image is saved on my computer (if applicable), and notes on what time of the day it will go up.
I use Buffer to schedule Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn posts. With the subscription that I have, I can schedule up to 100 posts on each network (aka 300 posts total, not 100 across the 3). One thing I really like about it is you can look at your scheduled posts in a list or in a calendar format, which is very help when trying to figure out if a time is already being used for one post. I made the switch to Buffer when Hootsuite changed their subscriptions; if I stayed with them, I would pay more for less posts a month.
The plan I have costs $144 a year and can connect to up to 10 networks. Overall, I think that’s a really awesome deal. In addition to Twitter profile, Facebook page, and LinkedIn profile, the possible networks you could connect to Buffer include Facebook groups, Instagram business (it does NOT automatically post for you), LinkedIn page, and Pinterest.
Tailwind for Pinterest
I use Tailwind to schedule my Pinterest posts and I LOVE it! Basically, I schedule 90% of my Pinterest traffic in advance. I schedule Pinterest promotions of my blog posts through Tailwind, both for new posts and for new pins for old(er) posts. What I love about that feature is that I can schedule posts to multiple boards and schedule the posts to be spread out over time, and there’s a button to schedule the posts at the best time for your posts.
Additionally, something that has brought a lot of traffic for me is their service called Tailwind Communities. Basically, these are like Pinterest group boards, but they’re only available in Tailwind. These Communities are where I get most of my pins for websites other than mine. Many of these Communities are monitored more than Pinterest group boards are, so if someone isn’t participating according to the rules, they can get kicked out of the group. In my experience, this makes people participate more.
I pay $179.76 per year for Tailwind for Pinterest. This is $119.88 for my Tailwind plan and $59.88 for a Communities “Power Up”. Basically, I’m able to be a member of 10 Tailwind Communities and add 80 pins per month to Communities, which is a lot more than you are able to do with a regular plan. (I think it’s 5 Communities and 40 pins per month.) This is money extremely well spent, and if you were to join only 1 of the tools in this post, I suggest it be Tailwind.
This is Tailwind’s new smart tool for making new images. You add a link to a post, the title, choose some photos (including from stock images they have), and it makes a bunch of images. You choose with ones you like and download or schedule them! Are these pins the best ones? Not usually. But it’s easy and perfect for when you don’t have a lot of time or energy.
Like with Tailwind Communities, there are a couple of Tailwind Create plans you can join. A Tailwind Plus plan (which I think is just once you pay and aren’t in a free trial), you get 30 pins per month. The next level of plan is $12 more per month ($149 annually), and you’ll get 100 pins per month, along with 5 million free stock photos and more. If you want to spend $24 more per month ($299 annually), you’ll get 300 pins per month as well as 10 million free stock photos, and so much more.Different ways to manage your social media platforms Click To Tweet
For years, I used apps that would send me a notification so I could automatically copy a picture and a caption to Instagram and then post them. However, I can’t usually be on Instagram during the day because I’m busy with my “day job”. As far as I know, Tailwind for Instagram is the only app that enables you to post directly to your Instagram while you’re not on your phone.
There are a few exceptions. 1) If you post what’s called a carousel, aka multiple images in 1 post, you can only choose a notification post. 2) If you want to schedule posting to your stories, you have to use a notification post. Otherwise, it can auto-post to Instagram while you’re not even on your phone.
Like with Tailwind for Pinterest, Tailwind will tell you what the most ideal time(s) are to post to Instagram for you. Like with many Instagram schedulers, you can save hashtag lists so you’re not always using the same ones. It also gives you the option to post your hashtags in a separate comment, and you can schedule your Instagram post to go to your Facebook page or Pinterest profile if you want.
The Tailwind for Instagram plan I have is $119.88 annually, but since I work and rely on Tailwind to post for me when I’m working, it’s absolutely worth it to me. If you’re on the fence, I really suggest trying a free trial. See how it impacts your Instagram! When I started my current job, I used a different app, which was all notification posting and no automatic posting. Switching to Tailwind made a huge difference for me and my Instagram account.
Pinterest Scheduling on Pinterest
You might wonder why I use Tailwind and Pinterest’s own scheduling tool. The answer is that twice a week, I have 4-9 new pins for old(er) blog posts scheduled to post directly on Pinterest all at the same time. Many social media platforms allow people to use third-party apps to post on them, but they give precedence to people who post directly on their site. Scheduling a bunch of pins to go live at the same time is a great way to boost your blog traffic. I schedule these pins to my Kate the (Almost) Great board, and then I add them to my Tailwind queue for all other boards.
How do you manage social media platforms?
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