Marketing automation is an awesome way to get things done without wasting a lot of time on small tasks. Any business consistently utilizing marketing automation is setting themselves up to achieve much more in a shorter span of time, including ad campaigns, email sends, prospect tracking, and of course, social media.
But wait a minute—isn’t the goal of social media to be personal? To tell people your story and allow them to take a closer, more personalized look into your business and the way it fits into the world?
Well, yeah… it is. There are so many social media automation tools, and they all do much the same thing, but should you even be using them? Good question.
Where Marketing Automation Falls Short
Let’s say you’ve just finished a huge public outreach campaign. You have a ton of new followers on your social outlets who are excited about your brand and are interested in engaging with you, but all of your posts are Hootsuite-generated links to your own website. You’re so automated that people feel blown off when they try to comment on one of your posts, share your content, or just try to talk to you and then get ignored. This could cost you all of these potential buyers that you just spent so much effort trying to obtain.
Furthermore, you risk looking like a jerk. All of these people are trying to chat you up, and you’re blatantly ignoring them.
Another symptom of social automation gone wrong is that you risk looking out of touch. For example, if you are a travel agency and you’re posting a poll that was scheduled two months ago regarding the best beach resort in Tampa Bay, but it posts right after a hurricane hits the coast of Florida, you’re going to get ignored.
Also, automated replies are a big turn-off and a clear sign that you’re “not real.” In case you didn’t see the New England Patriots ultimate blunder a few years ago, feast your eyes. Social automation can’t take into consideration the human element of social media, and oftentimes, things go horribly wrong.
To Automate or Not To Automate, That is the Question
The gurus agree that when it comes to social automation—much like with potato chips, chocolate, and beer—too much of a good thing can become a problem down the road.
Social media is constantly changing, and you absolutely have to pay attention. What worked a week ago doesn’t work today. It’s not a set it and forget it platform. It never has been, and it never will be.
Social automation is a powerful tool and an important complement to your social efforts, but you need to be smart about it.
Automating Social Media the Right Way
Sending out evergreen content from your site is never a bad idea, as long as it isn’t the only thing you’re doing. Too many businesses will use a bulk scheduler to send a bunch of messages and completely ignore social media after the fact. It’s bland, it’s boring, and it isn’t engaging.
Social automation works best if you balance it with personal engagement. Just like eating massive amounts of potato chips or chocolate, you need to work off some of that fat after the fact. Never leave social media to handle itself through automation, because the fact of the matter is, it can’t. You should take the time to read your messages and talk to people.
Your scheduled posts are the pitch, and your engagement is the home run. Stay relevant and timely, keep your voice, and have fun with it. If you’d like to have help with social media automation, and ensuring that you provide balance with the personal side of the equation, we’d love to help. We are helping clients with their marketing, marketing automation, and social media needs across the state of Colorado, and across the country.