Summer can be a whirlwind of weekend getaways, extended vacations, staycations, dinner parties, BBQs, picnics and tons of outdoor activities. In Seattle, it’s almost as if we treat each perfect sunny day like it’s the last one that’ll ever grace our skies! Soaking up every minute of summer sun and fun can mean more things vying for space in your already busy schedule. Sticking to your editorial calendar is a feat in itself, but what about keeping up your social media engagement? Staying active and present in social media channels is one of the best ways to grow your community, promote your blog posts and stay on top of what’s happening in the worlds that are important to you (fashion, blogging, pop culture, etc.) Social media isn’t something that can be easily handed over to others while you’re out on vacation – unless you’re running a site with various contributors, and especially if your blog is centered around your life.
That being said, here are some quick and easy ways to keep your social media activity going, even in the midst of your summer fun:
- Add a new profile picture: If you’re taking outfit photos for your blog or Instagram, you’ve got a fairly recent photo you can use as your profile pic for your different social media channels. Need help getting the right file size & dimensions for the ideal profile pic? Sprout Social has a great, always updated guide to social media photo specs.
- Mind your cover photos & backgrounds: Have you ever visited a blogger’s social media profile only to see a cover or background photo that 1) doesn’t compliment their profile photo or 2) doesn’t match their blog’s branding? After updating your profile photos, put some thought into your cover photos and backgrounds so that every impression your followers have is a positive one for your blog. (Note: Instagram & Pinterest don’t have either, but Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube give plenty of real estate for cover photos and backgrounds!)
- Update your bio: Perhaps even easier than updating your photos (it’s hard choosing the right photos, alright? :)) is making sure your bio is current. It’s what brands and followers use to find you on social media; the words you choose to use in your bio are the very same keywords they search for to find bloggers they want to follow (or work with!)
- Schedule your blog post promos: Set up your blog posts to send a tweet and/or Facebook update once they go live (most blog platforms should have a widget or tool to do this.) I also use HootSuite, Facebook’s post scheduler and other third-party tools to schedule tweets ahead of time. Buffer has a great article with tips on how to promote your blog posts multiple times over a period of a few days, weeks and even months.
- Put ‘community management’ on your calendar: If connecting with your community overwhelms you, turn off your phone/email notifications and take control of when you get on social media. Put some time on your calendar 1-3x daily to check in on your channels: respond to all of your mentions and any direct messages; go through recent posts from your favorite bloggers and friends; and make sure to comment, like or share any updates that speak to you. Listening and supporting others is just as key as making sure you’re getting yourself out there!
- Experiment with hashtags: I’m including this because I’m playing around with more hashtag use myself, particularly with Instagram. While it might seem excessive or downright spammy to some, I’ve found it to be a crucial way of getting more eyeballs (and followers) on my ‘grams. I’ve also found a ton of really great accounts to follow by looking through hashtags. Instagram is fairly limited in the different ways we can promote our blogs and personal brands. While you can tweet multiple times about one blog post, no one wants to see the same photo Instagrammed several times. Take a look at Instagram hashtag use – and don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it!
- Look through your analytics: Just like your blog’s analytics, your social media analytics are the window to knowing what’s working and what’s not. If something is a waste of your time, why keep doing it when you could be out enjoying the sun instead? I like to look at ManageFlitter (for Twitter), Facebook page Insights, Google+ & YouTube Analytics, Iconosquare (Instagram) and Tailwind (Pinterest) to see my stats. What are people liking (or not)? What keywords/hashtags do they respond to? Am I wording my tweets or FB posts in a certain way that speaks better to my followers than others? Which social media sites am I getting the most engagement? Ask yourself questions like these to help guide your social media engagement going forward.
What other tips would you suggest in keeping your social media active?
[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]