Twitter Tips: Manage Your Time and Schedule Your Tweets is part of What Now? Wednesdays: A weekly post where we share tips and strategies to help you determine what to do now – with your social media program or with a specific social media platform.
So you’ve joined Twitter and are Tweeting, ReTweeting and building up your Followers. Now you may be wondering how to stay visible in the fast-moving stream of Tweets. You could lose hours on your computer reading all those Tweets and trying to keep up by posting your own Tweets/ReTweets.
Here are a few tips to better manage your time and schedule your Tweets:
Manage Your Time
Set aside 20 minutes, 2-3 times a day to interact with your Twitter world in real time. If you can space it out to morning-lunchtime-evening that’s great, but come up with a schedule that works for you and simply check in on a regular basis. Spend this time checking on your favorite accounts, sending @replies, and following new people. Use a timer if you have to (it works for me!) and then move on to another activity.
Schedule Some of Your Tweets
To fill in the gaps of time when you are not interacting real-time on Twitter, you can use an application that allows you to schedule your tweets. If you plan on posting quotes or helpful tips, those Tweets can easily be scheduled. Sharing interesting articles that you’ve found on others’ blogs or websites can also be scheduled for later Tweets with the help of these apps.
There are a variety out there, some free, and others that charge, so do your research and test out a few. Several apps that I’ve used are:
Buffer (free) – Buffer lets you put up to 10 Tweets into a queue. The Tweets are then sent out during the day at times that Buffer recommends for maximum visibility. You can change the pre-determined times, but initially I suggest you simply put your Tweets in the queue and let Buffer do the rest.
Timely (free) – Timely allows you to send up to 9 Tweets per day. It analyzes your past 199 Tweets and then figures out the best times to send out your new Tweets.
Note: You may want to use a URL shortener like bitly and connect it to your Buffer or Timely account so you can easily stay within Twitter’s 140 character limit.
Social Oomph (paid) – With SocialOomph you can schedule your tweets for any time, with no limit on the number per day. You also have the ability to automatically follow anyone who follows you; plus, you can set up automated Direct Messages (to thank your new Followers). There are quite a few other tasks Social Oomph can do to help you manage your social media accounts so check out the website for more information.
Hootsuite (paid) – A social media dashboard that allows you manage and monitor numerous accounts: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and more. You can schedule tweets, manage searches, post updates to numerous accounts and much more. Visit their website for more information.
Start Out Simple, then Grow
There are so many Twitter tools out there, you can easily get lost or confused with which apps are best for you. And as social media goes, there will probably be a lot of new apps six months from now. So start out simple: choose 1 app (I recommend Buffer or Timely) and give it a try this week. Once you are comfortable with that app and have put together a daily Twitter system that works for you, then branch out with new apps.
Social Media is like learning a whole new language for many of us in the beginning, so give yourself time to learn and grow. In the meantime, check back with us for more quick tips.