I am sure you have heard someone’s opinion on the topic, the everlasting debate amongst many social media marketers is whether social media automation is a good practice or not. Many argue that the mere point of social media is to engage with our audience in a genuine and social manner, while others argue that social media automation keeps the conversation going – making your delivery more effective.
No matter where your preference sides, you cannot ignore the fact that it is a hot topic for a reason. Marketers don’t typically have heated debates about things that are completely ineffective, so obviously there is some value in social media automation. The trick is deciding how to do it.
Most marketers will agree that “some” level of automation is okay. After all, we live in an era of technology where thousands of algorithms and tools exist to make our lives easier and our work more efficient. So automation shouldn’t be a negative word or a dirty little secret.
But it can be misused and can come off incredibly lazy and even creepy if used incorrectly.
You know the posts I am talking about. Or you get a random DM on Twitter from someone you don’t know who is trying to make their robot sound human. Some automation can be effective, especially if you plan on using Twitter to search for leads (as an example). But you really have to do it properly.
Here are some tips to help you:
- Don’t be vague. Get straight to the point. People don’t like their time being wasted. So if you want something, just state what you are looking for.
- Know your market and keep them segregated so that you can use different language for each. Not all people are alike.
- Make MOST of your social interactions genuine, supplement with automation.
- Don’t schedule and walk away. Be available to respond in real time and know when your posts are scheduled to go out.
- Don’t let your automation make you lose sight of your content strategy.
As long as you sprinkle your authentic real time interactions with a little bit of smart automation, you won’t be doing any harm. Just target properly and take the time to think out your plan without relying too heavily on automation.