Social media automation tools – Why bother?
There are a ton of Social Media automation tools out there but the problem with them, at least for me as a ‘small-time’ marketer, is that most of them are chasing the Corporate Dollar and are priced accordingly.
If that’s what you want, great, do a Google Search. Me? I want free and Low-Cost ways to both to repurpose my content across multiple platforms and create Backlinks to my ‘money site’/ Tools like:
IFTTT stands for IF This Then That.
It’s a platform that lets you create automations called applets that connect different services with a command.
For example, take the applet: Save Your Instagram Photos to Dropbox.
It would use the command: If you post a photograph on Instagram, Then save a copy to Dropbox.
If you head over to All Services, you can see the full listing of services (applications, networks, features, tools, etc.) that IFTTT connects to.
There are all kinds of weird and wonderful connections available. But here are three applets that can save you time on social media:
- Pin new WordPress posts to a Pinterest board – Whenever you publish a new post on your WordPress blog, automatically publish a link, picture, and title to a Pinterest board.
- Automatically change your Twitter profile pic when you update your Facebook photo – Keep your social accounts in sync by updating your Twitter profile pic when your Facebook profile picture is changed.
- Share Instagram photos on Twitter only when you include a specific #hashtag in the caption – Whenever you include a specific #hashtag in your photo’s caption, it will automatically be tweeted. (Note: only works for single photo posts.)
If you can’t find the applet you need, then you can always create your own as Kristi Hines explains here.
IFTTT also has a business platform, which enables business owners to connect their apps with other brands on IFTTT.
Standout automation features:
- Provides hundreds of pre-made, time-saving applets
- Allows you to create your own applets
- Connects your business app to existing brands
- IFTTT is FREE to use.
Zapier works in a similar way to IFTTT, and has mind-blowing potential.
You can start workflows from any app by picking a trigger that sets your Zap in motion and then completes the action automatically, while you focus on more important work.
For example, you could have a Zap like this:
- TRIGGER: When I get a new email in Gmail.
- ACTION: Copy the attachment from Gmail to Dropbox.
- ACTION: Alert me in Slack about the new Dropbox file.
There are thousands of existing Zaps you can use or, like IFTTT, you can also create your own.
For example, here are three popular ways to connect WordPress and Twitter:
And here’s how you could create your own Zap connecting WordPress and LinkedIn:
Standout automation features:
- Includes hundreds of pre-made, time-saving Zaps
- Allows you to create your own automated Zaps
Zapier has a limited FREE plan, plus a wide range of premium subscription plans, starting from $24.99/month.Try Zapier
Social media automation is a necessity if you’re going to have any chance of maintaining a healthy balance of creating and curating content to share with your audience.
But it’s not merely a set and forget strategy.
You need to dedicate some time to staying social on social media. Otherwise you’ll turn into a robot.
Let the tools do the repetitive and tedious tasks such as scheduling social messages. Then, use the extra free time for more meaningful social interactions and content creation.