Creating and curating content is such an arduous task that entire job roles have been built around it, and it’s also the reason agencies like High Season exist (convenient for us). However not every business has the necessary resources, nor do they always actually want to outsource their Social Media. So if this sounds like your business, how can you ensure you’re using your time as efficiently as possible?
It’s all about process. We’re going to break down how you can save time creating content and distributing your posts so that you can stay at least one week ahead on Social Media.
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If you really want to soak it all up, read on. Let’s get into it.
First Up – Get A Strategy
We’ve spoken about this time and time again, but all Social Media activity is essentially pointless without a well thought out strategy. What kind of content do you post? How often do you post? What’s your visual aesthetic – crisp and oversaturated, or grainy and cold? What’s your brand voice? Are you playful or serious? Which networks do you focus on? All of these questions are key parts of your overall Social Media strategy, and once you have a plan together, all the next steps are essentially a breeze as you don’t really have to think about the what and why – you just make it happen. Put it all in writing, share it with key members of your team, and make sure everyone involved is on the same page. The rest will fall into place.
Content Creation – Batching Is Everything
Now you have your plan locked down and your team is on board, it’s time to get into content creation. The content that you share across your networks can only come from two places – either you create it yourself, or you find it elsewhere (we get to that in a moment). If you’re creating it yourself, which is always optimal to ensure quality, consistency, accuracy and the uniqueness of your profiles, the most efficient way to do this is to batch it. Book or find a space, gather your products and props, round up your team and settle in for a few hours. Once you get some momentum, you should easily be able to generate 20-30 unique and quality images to cover you for a month of content in just a few hours. The aim is to build a library of content so that you have a ton of choice when it comes to scheduling and writing captions. Sometimes it’s not possible to knock out that many images in one shoot, so you can break it up into two or three shoots – as long as you’re continually scheduling time for creation.
Ensure you’re gathering all the relevant images to support upcoming launches, campaigns and even seasons – prepare for holidays and the key weather change indicators (snow, fallen leaves, Christmas lights, etc) ahead of time so that you’re good to go with fresh photos when the time arrives. Another helpful tool is to create a mood board for your profiles, which is essentially a collection of images that represent the mood or vibe of what you’d like to achieve with your content creation. This is often very beneficial for photographers (when you’re not doing it yourself) to be able to capture exactly what you’re after.
Other types of content you can create are blog posts, which are always easier to implement when planned out well in advance, videos (a little more time intensive but these can perform exceptionally well), or even pre-planned narratives for Instagram Stories or a Twitter thread.
Content Curation – Round It Up
Even if you’re creating your own content, it’s often handy to have a library of pre-existing content to cover quiet times or for things you’re not able to create yourself. If you don’t have a blog, for example, you might be able to source some relevant articles online that you could share with your followers. One easy way to find articles is to sign up for mailing lists from various industry-specific publishers, or even sign up for Google Alerts, both of which will send you regular emails with a bunch of content options that might be exactly what you’re after.
And once you have all your content together, it’s time to schedule! Some of our favourite scheduling tools are Planoly (Instagram only), Sprout Social and Buffer, all of these do the job of allowing you to sit and schedule content (images and copy) for a week in simple drag and drop functions. The choice in platform is mostly about which product you feel most comfortable with, and whether they suit your budget (some are free with restrictions, some are paid).
So that’s it! If you follow these steps, there’s no reason you can’t knock out a week’s worth of content scheduling in only one hour. If you want to take it even further, you can check out these free Instagram tools to grow your Instagram following.
Don’t have time to handle all of this while also running your business? Get in touch with one of our Social Media Managers so that we can help put together a comprehensive social strategy that’s right for you.