By the time this post goes live I’ll be part way through the presentation that inspired it. I promised several weeks ago that I’d share with you the very simple scheduling tools I use to try to make my life easier and here they are. You can view the presentation I’m giving at the BusinessXchange Creative Cooperation event in Dorset today below and I’ll try to distill the main points within the post. If you’d like to download my example sheets then you can find links to them at the end of the post.
- getting new customers
- increasing traffic for your website
- creating a role for yourself as an expert
- increasing your brand (personal or otherwise) awareness
- supporting your existing customers
None of these goals is any better that any other, they are just different and they may overlap in many cases too.
Managing Your Time
However, we all know that time management is the most common reason that people give for either not using social media at all, or stopping using it after just a few weeks of tweeting into the wind. The problem is that without understanding your goal, you can’t define who your audience is, and without identifying your audience you can’t create a set of messages, posts or actions that will be of interest to them.
The secret to all social media marketing, whether it’s as an author, a business or an expert is knowing who you are talking to, why they may want to pay attention and what they are interested in. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again ‘it’s not about you’; rather it’s about the people you want to speak to. Don’t reel off facts and figures about your business and don’t tell them what you’ve done; instead answer the questions you already know they have and talk to them – a conversation works wonders in everybody’s book.
I use a variety of schedules I’ve created over the years but the key documents are my
Calendar Scheduling Tool – this helps me with each site to know what themes I’m working with, if there are any specific events or dates I might mention and any other useful ideas.
Status Update Spreadsheets – I create various sets of status updates, some have links back to content I’ve created and some are questions. This means that when I have a busy day, or few days, I know that there is always something going out on the networks on my behalf and I can catch up with the chat and conversation when I have time to take time instead of being rushed. Generally though I might schedule between two and four updates each day, with a blog post from the websites I manage thrown in for good measure too.
Blogging Schedule – I like to work with themes, it just seems to make life easier somehow, this is why I have things like my Thursday Throng and my Weekly Word posts. But I also like to keep track of what I’m doing, therefore a monthly sheet I can fill in lets me see at a glance if I’m overworking some areas and ignoring others. It also allows me to record views, comments and likes – giving me reasonably easy feedback about what works and what doesn’t when it comes to engagement.
Grab the example sheets
There are three images below, simply click on each one to pull up the full file and then print them off if you would like to.