2018 continues my search for finding a good social media management tool. A while back, I wrote about using Buffer Pro and what its been like for me. I’ve since moved away from the pro version, because there were a few things that I really didn’t like about it. The first was how much manual work was needed for me to repeat posts. The other was a pretty terrible bug that voids URL arguments. That means if I had an affiliate code attached to a link, because Buffer adds their own stuff to the end of a URL for stats, I wouldn’t get credit for links, or purchases. Buffer literally cost me money over Black Friday weekend. Today, my setup is janky at best and I continue evaluating solutions, but here’s what I got.
Social Media Presence
I should mention that my primary social media presence is on Twitter. I have a personal Facebook account and some small Facebook pages/groups, and I will also post to LinkedIn, but the main driver of my business, and therefore the features I look for, are for better engagement through Twitter.
Social Jukebox for Repeatable Tweets
Social Jukebox has been the best, most consistent for me (even though using an emoji will destroy tweets). I can create lists of tweets that go out on a schedule, choose date ranges for lists, and connect multiple accounts. It has been great for automating course promotion, and has been instrumental in promoting new episodes of my podcast. With a little bit of elbow grease, I can get Social Jukebox to do most of what I need to do.
Buffer (free) for One-Off Automations
Though Buffer has some issues, it’s still very good for simple scheduling. So I use that primarily to schedule some tweets in a queue on my personal account. This works best for the follow scenario:
- You want to schedule a bunch of tweets in a queue (max 10 on the free account)
- You want them to go out some set number of times per day (for me it’s once a day)
- You want them to go out sequentially
Number 3 is the thing that Social Jukebox cannot do, with ease at-least. I’d have to manually set a date and time for each tweet. With Buffer, I can say “post one per day, at this time,” and the time can be manually changed, per day. Adding many tweets (or posts) is easy.
Crowdfire is a tool I was using for content discovery and forming better connections with my followers, however after using it for the summer, I’ve stopped using it. They got rid of the auto-DM feature (well, Twitter did), and the time it took for me to go through their recommended content wasn’t really worth it to me. The recommended content also wasn’t great. I also got the idea that support wasn’t very good. So while I was using that, I am not any more.
There are a couple of WordPress plugins I use: Jetpack’s Publicize function, Revive Old Post, and Better Click to Tweet. Publicize will send my posts to various social networks upon publish, Revive Old Post will automatically tweet out old blog posts based on some parameters you can set in the plugin, and Better Click to Tweet embeds tweetable quotes into posts.
That’s A Lot!
I know you’re probably thinking, “that’s a lot of tools,” and you’re right. But I think I can mostly streamline this process. My friends over at Social Web Suite have finalized the first version of their app and plugin and it looks great. I’ll do a separate write up on that soon. I’m also trialing Zapier, which can automate a few things for me as well. Hopefully in the next few months, I’ll drop down from 6 tools to 1 or 2 at most!
The reason I have such a hodgepodge of tools right now is because the ones I use don’t do it all and the ones that do it all are so expensive. I’m a one-man band, and paying $50-100/mo is not something I can afford, nor want to do. I understand there’s big money in social media, especially for enterprises, but it means people like me get priced out of truly powerful social media tools. Or who knows. Maybe I’m just cheap.
What do you use? Do you have any tips for me? Let me know in the comments!