What is Social Media and Marketing Automation?

Marketing automation is a term that has gained a lot of popularity in the last few years.

Many people, however, do not fully understand what the term means or the effects it has on marketing.

The term refers to various marketing tools and software that are designed to automate different tasks that needed a lot of time and effort.

google trands marketing automation

Source: Google Trends, Marketing Automation, Last 5 years

Marketing automation tools have become more and more sophisticated to the point where, if you wanted, your whole marketing campaign would run and get optimized without any human input.

There are tools that can automate every aspect of your marketing, from emails, ad creation, and promotion, to sales funnels and AdWords campaigns.

For starters

Marketing Automation is a very broad topic.

Social Media Marketing Automation

In this blog, I want to talk about social media management software and how to automate your content strategy.

Small to medium businesses, seek affordable social media marketing solutions.

However

Hiring a social media marketing strategist is often too expensive and the reality is that most small businesses or individual entrepreneurs cannot afford to hire an expert or an agency.

Creating a social media strategy, planning, publishing and promoting your content can be time-consuming and costly.

If you were to do all the planning, monitoring, publishing, promotion and optimization yourself, you would have no time to do any of your actual work.

Let’s dig a little deeper

The importance of social media marketing is undeniable when it comes to growing a business.

In most countries, people are already spending more of their time-consuming content online rather than traditional media like TV and print.

digital vs traditional media

Source: globalwebindex

And, because advertising money gets spent where people’s attention is, digital ad spend is rising.

Statista - Ad spend stats

But there’s one small catch

Social Media Automation tools are great in helping reduce time spent in managing your company’s social media accounts.

They are not a replacement for a hand on social media strategy approach.

So, what are some affordable social media management software options?

These are the tools we use to automate all my social media management when appropriate.

I’ll walk you through the whole process

Being an individual without a large monthly marketing budget means that spending thousands for social media management software is not a viable option.

Thankfully…

All the software mentioned here is either free to get started or very affordable, costing around $30 p/m in total.

Setting up the marketing automation tools

First, you will need to create accounts for all the previously mentioned tools as they are all crucial to replicating this strategy.

Buffer, the most important social media automation tool on the list, is an amazing time saver when it comes to your social media content distribution.

It is a post scheduling tool that seamlessly integrates with all your social media accounts and other automation tools.

Here are all the account types you can link with Buffer.

buffer accounts

Buffer allows you to add posts to a queue, and then automatically publishes them to your linked social media accounts.

The best part

It publishes your posts at the best time of the day for engagement and reach, and provides analytics and other insights.

With Buffer, you get to better know your audience and create content that resonates with them.

Buffer is so powerful that It deserves a post of its own but for the sake of keeping this post short, I will not get into too much detail.

If you want to learn more, head over to their website, they explain all the features in an easy to understand way.

Next

Connect all the relevant social media accounts to buffer.

There are many ways to add content to the Buffer queue, either manually through the dashboard, by using their very useful chrome extension or Zapier.

But, we want to add and share content to all our social media automatically without any of our time and effort.

buffer dashboard

Here’s how.

Quuu is a content aggregation software that connects to your Buffer queue.

Head over to the Quuu website and login with your Buffer account.

Once you log in for the first time, you will need to choose the categories that interest you and the number of suggestions per day.

Here is how our profile is set up.

quuu dashboard

Choose the social media profiles you want Quuu to send content to and the platform will do the rest.

I know it is tempting to choose more than 2 or 3 suggestions a day but I would recommend against this.

You don’t want to spam your accounts with new posts every hour. Your followers will get annoyed and instead of growing an engaged following you will have people unfollowing.

Also, make sure you only choose relevant to your brand and audience categories.

There is a lot more to Quuu. To see what else you can achieve with it, read my previous article.

There are other similar to Quuu tools.  Having tried most of them, the quality of the suggested content on Quuu is far better.  There is a human team that curates the content and they have high standards when it comes to what blogs and articles are accepted into the platform.

Great…

Now that we have set up Buffer, and Quuu is sending and publishing great content to your social media profiles…

Social Media Engagement Automation

What about engaging with your target audience?

This is where the next two social media automation tools come in.

Jooicer is an engagement automation tool that puts your Twitter profile growth on steroids.

Followers Assistant is an Android application that does the same for Instagram.

The functionality is similar so I will not dive deep into how to use Follower Assistant but if you want to learn more, I wrote an in-depth post about growing your Instagram profile followers and engagement.

Both tools are cheap to get started, Jooicer is $9 per month and FA around $8 for the full functionality.

Grab a free trial of Jooicer here, to test out the full functionality.

A word of caution.

Jooicer, Followers Assistant and all other marketing automation tools of this kind go against the terms and conditions of social media companies, this includes Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

If you decide to use these tools make sure you understand the risks, use them within, or below the limits permitted to avoid having your account blocked.

Both Jooicer and Followers assistant have a safe mode that stops the tools when a certain threshold is reached for the day.

I recommend that you enable it to be on the safe side.

Here is how the Jooicer dashboard looks like.

Jooicer for Twitter Module Overview

As you can see available actions are separated into different modules.

You can enable the ones you want, according to your strategy.

The ‘follow followers’ module allows you to follow the followers of up to 5 other accounts in your niche.

follow followers module on Jooicer

At Marketing Kitchen, we write about Social Media Marketing and Digital Marketing in general so this is how we have set it up.

Make sure to combine the ‘Follow Followers’ module with the ‘Follow Cleanup’ module and replace profiles periodically.

Jooicer will automatically unfollow the users who do not follow you back.

Apply the same strategy when setting up all the other modules and you will see amazing growth on your profile followers and engagement.

What about Instagram?

Followers Assistant is a tool that offers the same tools and automation for Instagram. Discover all it can do in our complete guide to growing your Instagram followers and engagement

And LinkedIn?

LinkedIn Helper is a great Chrome extension that automates various actions on LinkedIn.

Don’t forget

Social media automation tools are great for helping you save time so that you can focus on your marketing strategy and improve upon it.

If you automate all your workflow do not expect to see any results.

Never automate your direct messages and comments.

There is nothing more frustrating than receiving a generic thank you message every time you follow a new account.

It is pointless, looks spammy and makes people more likely to unfollow you.

Keep engagement authentic and original if you want to establish a real connection with your followers.

Final Thoughts

I hope if you read the whole blog post, by now you have a better understanding on how to automate your social media management.

Do not automate everything, and do it gradually. See what works for you and improve upon it.

Keeping social media, social and human is the best strategy to grow your brand, but not everyone has the time or budget for a dedicated marketing team.

If you want to discover even more amazing marketing tools, our resources page includes the best hand curated and tested tools for anything needed to grow an online business.

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