By Julie Fisher
One common question that I hear from leaders of organizations about social media is, “Where do I find the time?!” With all of the tasks we need to accomplish each day, maintaining social media sometimes feels like a huge imposition and a big headache. I’m here to tell you that there is no need to feel like you have to be on social media 24/6 in order to keep your platforms updated. I’ve compiled a list of 5 ways you can save time while still maintaining a vibrant social media presence for your organization.
1. Limit Your Platforms. The social media needs of a small or medium size organization can usually be met through the use of one or two carefully chosen platforms. Many organizations feel the need to join several different platforms at once (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, making podcasts, writing blogs, you name it!). This is simply unnecessary and can cause a drain on the limited time of your staff and volunteers. It is far better to maintain one platform beautifully, then to try to maintain 3 or 4 ineffectively.
2. Stay Focused. Stay focused on one or two goals. What are your top priorities? Is it to inspire? Is it to create a connected community? Is it to advertise upcoming events? Is it to share information? Choose your most important goals and be consistent with your message. Whatever your goals are, keep them clear and simple, especially in the beginning.
3. Recycle. Did you create an engaging graphic for an event? Use the same template for the next event! In fact, you can create several graphics at a time and then save them for when you need them. In one of the groups I was managing, we posted a Shabbat Shalom greeting on Fridays. To save time, I created a template and swapped out the picture with a new one each week, retaining the same font and layout. I scheduled a time once a month to create these images for the month ahead, cutting down on my preparation time.
4. Delegate. Hire someone or find a volunteer within your organization to help with social media if your staff members do not have enough time. Whether you work with a professional or a volunteer, it is essential that the leaders of the organization know what the goals are and give clear instructions on what should or should not be part of the messaging. Set a time to meet regularly to discuss how things are going and to share feedback and new ideas.
5. Schedule Social Media. Randomly checking your organization’s social media platforms throughout the day is a big time waster. This incessant habit takes valuable time and attention away from your other tasks. Instead, schedule a few times each day to check in for any messages and to post your updates, just as you schedule phone calls and meetings. This will save you a lot of time and give you increased focus during your social media work sessions.
I hope these strategies will help you balance your busy schedule and use social media effectively with increased ease and decreased stress. Good luck!
Julie Fisher is an educator and social media consultant. She enjoys using her skills to help individuals and organizations convey their messages clearly and effectively on social media. She has served as the creator and administrator of many social media groups and has helped spread the message of the U.S. State Department in her service as a foreign service spouse. Find more social media tips from Julie at www.MakingSocialMediaWork.com or reach out to her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org