This might be news to no one, but if a business isn’t using social media to reach customers and clients, it’s missing out on a prime opportunity to create sales. “Great,” you might be thinking. “Something else I have to do to keep my business running?” The last thing you want to do is pile on yet another task that has to be consistently monitored throughout the day.

There’s one thing that most business owners can all rally around: they’re always looking for a new way to get small tasks done automatically, rather than taking precious time out of a day to do it. On a large scale, we’re talking about robots building cars. On a small scale, this might mean an online form that automatically sends an email to someone after it’s filled out.

It’s quick, it’s easy and it requires little to no effort on the part of anyone after it’s set up. Believe it or not, there are ways to automate your social media, as well. Automating social media can free up your time to focus on the other important aspects of running a business. Of course, as with most things, there are wrong and right ways to put social media on cruise control.

Automating social media

Just to be upfront about this: automating your social media isn’t for everyone. Some businesses will need an additional human touch. At the same time, even for businesses that can make automation work, there’s only so much that can be automated to keep social media marketing services legitimate. You should never let automation take total control over your customer service.

Interaction is perhaps the most important part of social media, allowing your customers and clients to interact with your business on a level they may not be able to reach otherwise. Using automation as a shield or over-automating will distance you from your clients and the outcome won’t be pretty. Only automate as much as you can while still maintaining a human appeal.

Tools of the trade

What may be most daunting about social media is that there are so many platforms out there to jump on. Each one has a different audience and some of those may not fit with your clientele. However, by implementing various platforms, you can reach out to a variety of others and perhaps expand your customer base. This means, of course, you are then responsible for managing not just one social media account, but many.

Yet it’s not as easy as linking your Twitter account to your Facebook account or vice versa. In fact, that can create double posts or other strange anomalies that will alienate your followers. Having a good social media management system will not only assist you in automating your many accounts, but you can also keep a good watch on them all at once.

Some of these social media marketing services allow you to post a single time to multiple accounts at once, if you desire, or post updates using email or text messaging. Maybe you come up with the perfect post at 11 p.m., yet sending it out then won’t do you any good since your followers are asleep.

Good management tools allow you to schedule a post for a specific time. Again, it’s important to be mindful of your automated posts versus your real human interaction. Observant social media users can usually tell a real post from a canned one, so proceed with caution.

Do some research and find the best automated managing system that does what you need it to do. Once you’re automating, start slow and work your way up. You will quickly find the special balance that works for your business