Welcome to Episode 364 of Hit the Mic with The Stacey Harris.
All right guys 364, and we’re talking about tools. Social media tools and what to use and is this the right one or is that the right one; is probably the question type I spend the most time answering. Especially, when I’m at events, and I’m speaking to people. A lot of times it’s not really about what should I be hosting, or where I should be hosting, it’s literally what can I use to make this easier. What can I use to make this more painless? How can I automate this in a way that makes sense.
I want to talk about three types of tools that you need to have. Now, I will say that there are a whole plethora of options within these tool types to chose; I’m going to share my favorite in each category. Again, and I’ve said this before, and I guarantee I will say it again, maybe in this show; the best tool for the job is the one you are going to use. The smanciest, fanciest most wonderful tool that every expert recommends, is totally useless if you never open it. The best tools for the job is the one you will use, but I will tell you my three favorites the ones I use. Cool?
All right. Let’s jump in tool type number one; a scheduler.
Now, I want to put a little asterisk next to this. Not everyone needs a scheduler. I do have a couple of coaching clients who focus mostly on Facebook and Instagram, and they don’t use a scheduler. They use a scheduler inside Facebook, and they use an alarm reminder to schedule to their Instagram, and that’s where they’re at and that works perfectly for their demographic for their industry, for their ideal clients and for their set-up. There is no reason for them to pay X-Y-Z per month to have a scheduler, when that’s the best option for them. That’s my little side note there, but jumping back in, a scheduler
Some option of posting is the most-most necessary tool. I use eClincher. There are a ton of reviews of tool options, and if you go down to the resources on the Show Notes page I will list links to those episodes. We talk about Buffer, Hootsuite, eClincher and Sprout Social. We talked about CoSchedule, and a whole plethora of choices. Again, the right one is the one you’ll use. I use eClincher, because it allows me to do a couple of things. A. It allows me to have something called queues, where my content is actually recycled. That allows me to put all 364 episodes of this show and content for that in a list. It gets shaken up like a snowball, and those tweets go out. When the snow all settles, and the tweets have all been sent it gets shaken up again, and the whole process happens again, without me or someone on my team going in and making that happen.
I really like eClincher. In addition to that, I have the option for social listening, because I’ve got my social inbox where all of my Facebook comments, LinkedIn messages Twitter replies and direct messages’ sort of things come into one place. I can simply go in and monitor that space. I don’t have to over and over and over and over again dig into each of those places. On the flip side of that, I can also schedule specific messages at specific times. If I’m a part of an affiliate promo, or I’m launching something, or there’s something I need to go out on Tuesday at seven, I can schedule it to go out at one time. Tuesday at seven. I really like that. That’s why I like eClincher. They’ve also got a lot of great built-in analytics and things like that.
So, that’s what I use. But a scheduler, something that’s going to help you streamline the process of scheduling your social media foundation is really key. When I talk about your social media foundation, I’m talking about, and I’ve talked about this in past episodes, the content that has to go out. Your content. Your other peoples content. Your social messages. It’s the content that you know goes out week after week, month after month, year after year. It’s the baseline, the foundation, see how it’s named that, of your social media time. So get that stuff out. Schedule that. Make time to do it once a week. A scheduler allows you to do that. That way when you’re going in you can trust that your scheduler is taking care of your foundation and you can go in and engage. You can go on and post something live and fresh. Whatever it is. You can go focus on your groups. Whatever it is you need to do, you have that option. Again, ding-ding-ding, your scheduler has allowed your foundation to be going out. Cool?
All right. Number two. A graphics tool.
I’m not saying you have to have Photoshop, in fact in most cases you don’t need Photoshop. I use Canva, and I’ll be honest for some stuff we do use Photoshop. But we actually have templates that we had a designer build for us in Canva. We used those 98% of the time. We just rolled out new cover images and new Instagram quote graphics and stuff like that; guess what guys? We do those with Canva.
It doesn’t have to be a highly complicated tool. Again, there are a whole range of choices for you. I really love Canva. We even spring for the Premium version, I think it’s like 12 or 15 bucks a month, and I think it’s actually ten bucks a month if you pay annually. You end up with a couple of months free, so it kind of shaves it down to be less per month. Yeah, it doesn’t have to be complicated, it can be simple.
One thing I will say though. When you’re using a tool like Canva, or some of these real quick social media graphic template-based tools, remember to make yours look like you and your brand. That does mean just adding your logo in place of whatever logo was defaulted in the template, because for a lot of people in the online business space we see those templates so often, and we know this tool so well I can identify a Canva graphic, nine times out of ten. They use one of the top six templates in the list and they didn’t really do anything in the way of customization. So it looks like a Canva image to me. Their brand is completely washed out of it, because I immediately identify it as a Canva image. Do some tweaking.
I’m sure there are some designers who can probably identify them at even a higher level than I can, but put a little bit of time in and you know what, if you really want invest in having a designer help you. I’m happy to give you the name of my designer, if you guys are interested in that. Send me a message. The team will get you her name, and put you in contact. But you need to make it look and feel like your brand or it’s not representing you, it’s representing Canva or whatever tool it is that you are using. Canva is certainly not the only game in town with that kind of stuff.
Number two, a graphics tool. I’ll also say that your graphics tool doesn’t necessarily need to be desktop-based. For a lot of you that may be something on your phone. A editing app on your phone that you use. For example WordSwag is massively popular. Again, I can identify a WordSwag image pretty carefully. Make sure you give it your own feel. Don’t use default everything, give it your own vibe. Graphics tool massively important, especially now, we know how important visual stimulation is in the grand scheme of social media. That’s why photos and videos are doing so well.
Number three, before we close this up, some sort of tool to collect your stats in.
Now, I’m trusting that I don’t need to mention that you are actually going into your Facebook insights, your Twitter analytics, your LinkedIn analytics, your Google analytics, and paying attention to your stats and that these numbers mean something and will give you information. However, you also need to collect that information somewhere. I actually keep it stupid stupid simple, we use Google Sheets to track things like followers count, engagement rates, click through rates, most popular links, and things like that. My friend Brandy Lawson over at FireyFx has been talking a lot about Google Data Studio, which is actually a really cool tool that we use to put together parts of our client’s reports. So they can see what’s happening on their website, it’s a really cool option. You can absolutely be pulling those and collecting your data there, but also keep a record of those things.
Again, I keep follower counts and stuff in Google Sheets. I keep a record of this stuff because guys social media is not an immediate payoff. It’s not you hire someone or you start doing something or you make one tweak and suddenly the flood gates open. That’s not what social media is for. It’s a long-term game. You’re looking at three, six, twelve months to start really seeing that you’ve got some solid leverage. Yes, little things should start happening. Follower count should start increasing. Engagement should start increasing. Low level sales may increase, the email list may start growing incrementally over time, but it is not a switch. It is not something you flip. When you have the numbers and you can look at them month over month, and quarter over quarter, and year over year, you really start to see the difference that’s made when you just keep plugging away. You just keep doing the work. You just keep being of value. You just keep being consistent. You just keep sharing information and making those sales offers. Making those pitches. In the words of Gary V, “You’re doing your jobs, but you’re also doing your right hooks.”
All right guys, so make sure you are tracking that information and you are paying attention to it. Not just day to day, but over the long-term. So having some sort of tool where you collect those stats, that’s going to be really valuable.
That’s the show for today. Big, big, big reminder. We have a brand new training happening Friday actually. It’ll get released on Hit the Mic Backstage. This month is going to be our … Next month ,rather, September is going to be a really good one. We’re actually going to talk about how to use Facebook ads to engage a stale community. This is particularly important at this time of year, because maybe just maybe you have spent the last couple of months chilling out. Maybe not posting quite as much. Maybe not engaging your community and now you want to launch something. Now you want to release your program or grow your e-mail list so you can launch something in January, whatever it is. You want to hit those numbers that you set in January of this year. So we’re going to talk about setting up your Facebook ads to engage that community.
If you would like to join us, and I know you would, HittheMicBackstage.com is the place to go. And I will see you backstage in the private V.I.P. lounge, and of course the Facebook group, and of course I’ll see you again here next Tuesday. See you soon.