Social Media Monitoring in Minutes? Yes please!
This post was originally published July 02, 2012, but it has been so popular that we decided to update it and republish it with fresh, new information you can use today!
We all struggle to fit all of our important to-dos into our work days and our bandwidth seems to be at maximum capacity at all times.
On top of that, social media is an ever-evolving, fast-paced media. It can feel like monitoring your multiple accounts is an insurmountable task. That said, you may be wondering how it's possible to monitor all of your accounts in 20 minutes a day. Let me tell you.
1. Prioritize platforms
Not all of your social accounts are as fruitful as others. We see many clients that are on every social media channel possible, but they are failing at being active on all of them. Choose your top 2-4 platforms that make sense for your business to get started and focus your efforts on them.
Since most businesses are familiar with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, this is a good place to start the evaluation, but the platform must be right for your business. If you are a photographer or a wedding planner you might do best on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram. If you are a B2B organization, LinkedIn may be a good fit. Focus on what's best for you, not trying to keep up with what everyone else is doing.
2. Set a Schedule
The last thing that a business owner or a solo marketing manager should be doing is scrambling to respond to various social media notifications and messages throughout the day. The constant disruption becomes vary distracting and can steal you away from your other business and marketing priorities. Instead, allocate a set time of 10 minutes each day to check your social channels. I like to do this first thing in the morning before anyone gets to the office. If you are monitoring 3-4 channels this shouldn't be too difficult once you get accustom to it.
3. Social Monitoring Apps
There is no way that you will be able to monitor your accounts in 20 minutes or less per day without some help. You will need to call on platforms like Sprout Social, HootSuite, orTweetDeck for some help with this. There are a handful of these apps available for free or with paid subscriptions.
These three apps do a very good job of monitoring 3-5 platforms for free. If you have more accounts or want more depth in your monitoring you may need a paid version or a more robust platform like Radian6.
Hootsuite Pro, which requires a paid subscription, is nice because it allows for unlimited social profiles, it is very easy to use, and has a robust feature set. You an also have unlimited RSS Feeds with Hootsuite so you have virtually all of your monitoring in one spot.
4. Bulk Replies via Twitter
Twitter can be downright overwhelming as your follower base grows and your Home Feed gets cluttered. The first thing you need to do is Create Lists so you can segment your followers, as well as those you follow, to track their interactions easily.
Remember, time is of the essence, so if you are getting 10-30 Retweets each day and you want to thank everyone, then reply in bulk. Thank 3-5 people at a time to cut down on the volume of Tweets you must send and try to engage based on topic.
If you have multiple replies or mentions based on a blog article, then engage more than one follower at a time, if possible. Try and limit your replies to your main influencers and to topics that are relevant about your company, industry, customer support, or complaints and point them to the individual at your company they need to contact.
Daily Schedule: Social Media in Less than 20 Minutes
5 Minutes: Check your social monitoring app or individual feeds for mentions of your company and keywords you're tracking.
5 Minues: Make a note of interesting industry-related conversations and posts that could lead to content creation, campaigns and social posts of your own.
5 Minutes: Log in into your priority accounts to quickly scan for comments, mentions or other hot items.
Instead of taking action immediately as you go through this daily schedule, make a note of everything that needs your attention and come back to those items later as needed.
You will notice that this daily schedule should take about 15 minutes, leaving you with a 5-minute buffer. Once you get comfortable with your new social media monitoring plan, you should be able to get this done in 15 minutes, which leaves you 5 more minutes to either add additional platforms or to start replying to the comments and blogs you are monitoring.
This may seem impossible today, but so did a lot of things in life before you learned the optimal technique for success. Stick to your plan. Even if it takes longer than 20 minutes in the short-term, before you know it you'll be rocking your social media in minutes.