THE BLOG
11/26/2013 05:06 pm ET Updated Jan 26, 2014

How to Put Your Social Media on Autopilot

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There's nothing I love more about being an entrepreneur than creating systems that make my life easier, and one thing I love to do is put my business on autopilot -- especially when it comes to social media.

As a housewife entrepreneur (meaning I'm raising a baby and keeping a house while I run my business), keeping up with social media can feel overwhelming.  But I'm happy to say that I no longer fret at the last minute about what I can post to keep my company's online presence strong.  And while I wouldn't say I'm perfect at it just yet, I've found a few tips to make the impossible feel possible.

Here's what you can do to rock your social media:

Schedule your posts  
Almost all of my social media sharing is scheduled.  My favorite tool for this is Buffer, because the user interface is so easy to navigate (and no, I'm not a Buffer affiliate, just a big fan).  I load up my queue with what I want to share and Buffer automatically posts for me at various times throughout the day.

It's not uncommon to get several thoughts in a row I want to share, or come across several things to share while reading email or working.  Buffer allows me to add all these ideas to my queue when I think of them, and shares them at predetermined intervals.  You decide how many times a day you want to share and Buffer takes care of the rest.  They are a smart company with amazing customer service (you'll get a reply back from a human, every time), and they also offer phone and browser extensions so you can easily buffer things to be shared later.  The best part?  It's FREE.  Hootsuite is another option that allows you to connect more types of accounts and gives more in-depth metrics, although I personally don't find it to be as user friendly.

Make it happen: If you haven't already, give Buffer a shot.  I have a hunch you may just fall in love with it!  Toy around with how many times a day you want to post (I recommend 2-4) and letting Buffer post automatically from your queue.  Also try scheduling a post for a certain date and time.

Super Secret Bonus Tip: Use bitly as the link shortener for your buffer accounts so that your followers don't know which posts are scheduled or not.  To set this up just go to settings>link shortening in Buffer.  Shout out to Femworking member, author, and blogger Carin Kilby Clark for this tip!

Batch your social media  
Yesterday I sat down and scheduled throwback Thursday photos for the next 8 weeks.  So for two months an old photo relating to me or my company will be shared automatically, without me having to lift a finger.  I've also batched quotes, and other random, non-time-sensitive thoughts I want to share with our followers.  When I write a blog post I schedule it to share the day it originally posts, a week from then, two months from then, and again in six months.  I also batch-scheduled announcements promoting our upcoming launches for Femworking groups in various cities.  I scheduled each one about one week before the launch date so our followers have time to RSVP.  You can batch testimonials to share (click here to learn how I get awesome testimonials).

Make it happen: Think about what posts can be batched for your business; align your social media posting with your editorial and marketing calendars.  What upcoming promotions or events do you have that you can schedule posts for in advance?   Schedule time during your workweek to sit down and load up your queue with photos, testimonials, quotes, links to your original content, blog posts, marketing copy, promotional posts, and anything else you may want to share.

It takes a bit of getting used to, but once you get comfortable loading up your queue in advance you'll love the peace of mind that comes from knowing your business' social media can run without you.

Share your tips and tricks  for putting your social media on autopilot in the comments below. At Femworking we find huge value in learning from each other.

Kelley Sanabria is the founder of Femworking, a business and blogger networking platform with a revolutionary method that brings a mastermind experience to a one-hour, biweekly networking meeting. She recently co-planned the Femworking Blogger and Small Business Conference and is launching new Femworking groups every quarter in 2014. To learn about launching your own group, RSVP to an informational call here. Sign up for free tips to grow your business or blog at Femworking.com.