As December comes to a close, you’ll probably be taking some much needed time off. However, before you scurry out for the week (or two), be sure to schedule a few social media posts to go out on your company Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages while you’re away. Here’s how you can do it in under 30 minutes, and for free.
Why You Should Schedule
Your followers whether they be tenants at your downtown high rise or students on your university’s campus - look to you for information about the happenings at your building. You can’t leave them hanging just because it’s the holidays! With time changes, employee vacations and after-hours parties its a busy time for everyone, it’s best to be over communicative than to not post anything at all. Take a few moments to schedule a few informational posts if you plan to be out-of-the-office for an extended period of time. Your tenants will thank you for the extra effort when they're trying to figure out if your building is open or closed on Christmas Eve.
Methods You Can Use
One of the most popular online scheduling tools out there, Hootsuite lets you schedule to most major social channels for no cost. However, with their free program you are limited to scheduling to just three social networks. Users of the complimentary platform will also only be able to access basic analytics about their posts. You can, however, reply, retweet, like or respond to any content within Hootsuite. This platform allows for posting on many networks, including Twitter, Facebook, Google +, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr and Dropbox.
The twin sister, Buffer is just as effective in scheduling social media ahead of time. Also offering a free version, the online app allows for one user and one account per social site. It does not allow you to engage with your content after it’s posted, so to respond to a tweet or post, you would have to log into that specific social network. Buffer also supports less channels than Hootsuite, but it allows for posting on Twitter, Facebook, Google + and LinkedIn.
Facebook & Twitter’s Internal Scheduling Feature
You’re out of luck if you only use LinkedIn, but Facebook and Twitter both have their very own internal scheduling systems that you can use. They’re free and fairly easy to navigate. Both allow users to add photos and links to posts, and allow for preview before something is submitted. For step-by-step instructions, head to our blog on scheduling.
What to Post
There are a few things you can post, a few of them for fun and a few for providing information to your audience.
Closures and Holidays Observed
It’s a good idea to tweet or post your building’s holiday hours and the days your office will be closed for the season. Be sure to include when you’ll be back to your normal schedule. You can also include any emergency contacts for those who happen to be in your building after hours. If someone will be in your department while you're gone, have them periodically check into your Facebook and LinkedIn company page to see if anyone has asked questions on holiday hours. When you do close, post the same "closed" post across all of your active platforms so there is no confusion.
If your office is located in a northern state or country, you’ve probably dealt with ice and snow this time of year. If any roads are typically dangerous or have planned closures, be sure to remind your audience to take caution in known problem areas. Also mention to your followers about any slick areas around your entrances, and stairways. Be sure to tell them if salt has been sprinkled around the building, but also remind them to remain cautious on all outdoor surfaces.
Don’t forget to leave your followers a holiday greeting! Find a fun graphic online or one from your company’s holiday email or from your website. Share a photo from the office holiday gift exchange or annual party. This can be a stressful time for many people, so a little holiday cheer won't go unnoticed!