App of the Day
Marketing November 7, 2014

Twitter Marketing Tips: 7 Ways You're Wasting Time

Edit: This post has been refreshed to reflect another 3 months of time-saving and the addition of 6 more twitter accounts plus a revitalization of our other 4 social channels. I've included a TL;DR section at each heading for a quick read and to help the narrative flow along.

What I Do

My title is “Director of Content” at Moblized. I edit, format, write, direct, manage, and really take care of all of the tasks surrounding our blog and social content.

There is no “Marketing Team” to speak of so I’m in the most logical spot to both generate the content AND get it out there.

While we are distributing content primarily via social media, we are also always looking to post pieces on our blog. Each week we put out nearly a thousand social posts that go out over 10+ different accounts spanning 5 social channels.

I do have help, in the form of solid curation, responding, and engagement efforts by my colleague. However, when it comes to the thousands of clicks that generate our images, editing, copy, and timely distribution, that's all from my workspace.

Why write about it?

Because time, and where we spend it, is our most valuable asset.

As I've been refining our Twitter management and distribution, I've learned some amazing ways to leverage technology to increase my productivity. My advances have been both technical and managerial and I've had my technical expertise increase as well as my time management improve.

Over the past year, I've gone from 3-5 hours of distribution per day to about 30 minutes per day between all 10 of our Twitter accounts (We started with only 4 accounts, but I've since been able to add an addition 6 under my wing and begin our efforts on 4 other networks entirely). 

I have tested dozens of social management, productivity, and distribution solutions and have come away with some interesting insights and some pretty awesome solutions.

But, why this post? 

Well, for one, my job is content and this makes for some excellent content.

But mainly, this post is proof that I've become so efficient at managing our Twitter marketing that I've actually had time to sit down and write a post about it. 

I figured that by highlighting some of the sticking points that prevented me from being efficient, at least one marketer would gain an increased awareness of their own inefficient Twitter management mistakes.

So without further ado, here are 7 ways I have found myself wasting time on Twitter marketing and my solutions to each.

1. Not Going With What Worked

TL;DR: Twitter is perfect for the types and breadth of content we distribute. We can put out loads of content on Twitter and it's more or less acceptable; whereas Facebook, Google+, and Linkedin are best for only a few posts per day. Our non-Twitter social channels were failing because we wanted to treat them all the same as Twitter and couldn't manage the volume plus our engagement was too shallow. We decided to focus on Twitter, to some excellent results, but how could we make it better?

This really applies more to discovering that Twitter was our best distribution channel out of ALL of our social marketing channels.

Our primary distribution method is Twitter, but it wasn't always that way.

There was a time during our heaviest growth hacking phase when we were distributing content through:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Pinterest
  • Google+

In addition, we were submitting content for discovery through other channels like:

  • BizSugar
  • Hacker News
  • USV

The list of places we distributed includes most of the 14 Sites to Ignite Your Content Marketing that I've written about. All said, we weren't really focused on managing these accounts, but rather just distributing on them whenever content would come out. (As mentioned earlier, we've brought back our Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, and Pinterest presence - but they're still not managed nearly as well as our Twitter accounts)

Back then, almost everything we posted went out to Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter (only select posts went to the discovery channels) but none of the channels really took off except for Twitter. We kept nurturing Twitter because it “just worked” without needing us to engage much more than just posting the content.

Here's what our growth looked like on our primary account once we focused on it:

Moblized Followers Chart

You can see the pivot where we began really managing the account versus trying to be mediocre on all channels.

With Twitter taking off and all of our attention there, our efforts on other channels dried up to almost nothing.

Why didn't the other networks work out?

We weren't really building social networks at that point, but rather, just shouting at the top of our lungs for people to “Step right up and see the content!” 

While Twitter is, without question, a complex networking platform, the core of most content marketing on it is a feed of rhetorical questions and links.

You can group up the expected interactions like this:

  • Be passive and accept my tweeted information
  • Engage via a mention or reply
  • Confirm that you approve with a Retweet or Favorite
  • Get more posts like this by Following
  • Click this link, go consume this content

As you can see, 4 of the 5 are absolutely acceptable outcomes for any tweet. Even if someone doesn't engage with the content, at least there was an impression made (whether positive or negative will depend on the quality and relevance of your posts, of course).

In our case, we want traffic to our app directory or blog, so our feed is dominated by links to either content about apps, software profiles, or lists of apps to search through. Because this is what we built our following on (a constant feed of business software links), socializing takes the back seat to offering useful information. 

Twitter (to an extent) permits this type of single-minded, professional distance in a way that many other channels do not. Our other social channels failed because we treated them all the same. We were only truly able to saturate our Twitter following with this type of content because they followed knowing we had a history of shallow engagement.

Twitter was also perfect for our small team because it only required 140 chars of typing, a link, and a button press. Creating these posts didn't take a lot of time (which was great because we didn't have it).

Eventually, we were putting out dozens of Tweets per day compared with 1 Post per day on the other 3 accounts. This was another key difference between Twitter and the rest of our channels. For us, the ability to saturate our following with a steady stream of content (without overwhelming them) has been instrumental in ensuring that we reach as many of the verticals that we target as possible.

But, managing just one Twitter account that put out so many tweets by hand was barely manageable between a few people working on it in their “free” time. At that point we were hand-writing every tweet and burning out trying to then ensure the same success (through the same methods) on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+.

This lead me to tackle my next time-sink...

2. Not Reusing Posts

TL;DR: I found engagement to be about the same on re-posts but putting out the same tweet over and over was messy and time-consuming. I built a content library as well as tweet variations to save time typing and to preserve our tweets for re-use later. While I didn't have to manually type each tweet anymore, I still had to break my other workflows to add this expanding list of ready content. There had to be a better way...

Last April, Kevan Lee put out this post on the Buffer blog about re-purposing content. From it you can quickly get an idea of some awesome ways to repurpose content.

He begins the post talking about “Evergreen” content — content that has more year-round power and is less temporal than say, a piece on Christmas Marketing Techniques, or something that describes current events.

Most of Moblized's content is evergreen, and we are able to use it over and over because it is not often bound by a specific event.

One of the suggestions in the piece is to re-post and re-promote content to your social media. 

And that's exactly what we started doing.

As we were tweeting those hundreds of updates per week, it was interesting to see how each re-phrasing of the call to actions would drive traffic to the same piece of content. It was like an un-scientific A/B testing of new titles for each piece. But we were still wasting a ton of time.

The problem was two-fold:

  1. We were manually typing in new tweets and links quite often, which was tedious and repetitive.
  2. There was no good way of knowing what content we had shared before, how often, and with what copy

The solution we came up with was a master Tweet spreadsheet. It was a single column with the copy and link from each tweet slapped into a new row manually. It was ugly, often had repeats, and jumping into Google Spreadsheets to add / retrieve the tweets was a real pain in the neck.

All said, it worked wonders for grabbing old tweets and re-using them when we found they had high engagement. That was a huge time saver, got us organized, and set us up for future advancements in Twitter management.

We also downloaded a desktop (non web-based) “AutoTweeter” that allowed us to select a spreadsheet full of tweets to send it out on a schedule. That saved an INSANE amount of time but would end up making the same schedule every day. Because it was getting spammy, we stopped using it in favor of manually posting the list of saved tweets.

Check out this tweet that we posted over and over. While the engagement numbers on each aren't particularly impressive, the great part is that even with the same copy, tags, and link it received similar engagement each time.

What's more, I didn't have to type a word of it after that initial effort was spent creating it. Just copy, paste, and “Tweet.”

Reusing Tweets is Good

You may look at this and say, “Bah, that's spammy... why would you tweet the same thing over and over... my company would never do that.”

But, consider the firehose I mentioned earlier. As with any feed of information, Twitter is searched, appropriated, dissected, and smashed together with other sources of information. While it may come off slightly repetitive if this were all the user was seeing, our audience is undoubtedly also following hundreds of other sources as well and viewing dozens of feeds in 3rd-party (non-Twitter) solutions.

Combine this with the fact that no one is staring at any single user's feed 24/7. Presenting the information at a different times or dates gives it a second, third, or tenth chance to make an impression on a viewer who may, or may not, have even known of your account when you first posted it.

In the example above, it also looks far worse than it is. I filtered the results to show ONLY that tweet, so you don't see the other 50+ tweets that went out between each of those. As you may be able to imagine, it never occurs that you actually see two of the same post in your feed at any time. 

But still, if you are an avid feed-watcher (or only follow a few dozen people), you may start to see a pattern and get frustrated.

To combat this blatant repetition, we decided that it would be great to have 3 variations of each tweet, which yes... does translate to 3x the work per tweet.

 One of the great things about this though is that you are already in that copywriter mindset, so just knocking out 2 more was about an extra minute per tweet. So I made 3 columns in our “Master Tweet List” and we started creating 2 extra variations of any tweets we put out.

At this point, what you may have started seeing in our feed was something like this (again filtered to show only one tweet):

Reusing Tweets Brings Solid Engagement

Now, we have the capacity to add some much needed variety, as well as test for the most effective CTA. Plus, I don't need to think up new copy for every tweet that I want to put out.

Voila! We had a nice 3-columned spreadsheet with 3 variations of each tweet and we could then draw our tweets from one of the columns to create a unique set of tweets every day. But this was still too slow, even just managing one account took hours.

We eliminated much of the content "Creation" but were now left with a distribution bottleneck. 

Manually posting tweets wastes a ton of time. We needed a better way...

3. Not Scheduling Posts

TL;DR: Even with a library of tweets to draw from, I still had to break my workflows to make it happen. We wanted a way to upload hundreds of tweets at a time so we started using Buffer and BulkBuffer to load CSV spreadsheets into our pre-defined schedules. I went from dozens of workflow breaks per day to posting all of our content within about an hour. The problem was that it was only our content, we wanted to start curating but curation takes a lot of time as well. How could we make curation fit into our distribution?

I can't adequately describe how useful post scheduling is. It's one of the most important aspects to our strategy.

Whether it's for our own campaigns or curating content, we can't push the Tweet button every time. Logistically, it just doesn't make any sense! Try as I may, I'll forget, something will distract me, or it will require me to break my workflow to distribute on our social channels countless times per day.

Even I, who am on my computer A LOT found that it was becoming debilitating to try and make our distribution happen "in the moment". This got increasingly discouraging as we wanted to do structured campaigns and schedules, which would warrant an unprecedented level of commitment to distributing on time.

In our case, what we really needed was a solution that allowed us to:

  1. Connect 5-10 Twitter accounts
  2. Create custom schedules
  3. Upload a Spreadsheet of Tweets that would go out on the schedules

While the AutoTweeter we tried (briefly mentioned earlier) could set up a posting schedule and accept spreadsheets of Tweets, there was no good way to manage multiple accounts and the features were incomplete.

Plus, as proponents of web-based, integrated solutions, it was silly for us to isolate such a critical aspect of our distribution from our other tools and workflows. Our solution was Buffer.


We had already been using Buffer for scheduling time-sensitive posts, but it lacks a spreadsheet or CSV upload feature (*cough* feature request *cough*). Without it, you are still stuck manually adding dozens of Tweets if you want to publish with any frequency. 

One immediate benefit of Buffer was being able to queue from a number of other apps, pages, and sources using their integrations and browser plug-ins. A recent feature to their browser plugin allows you to even schedule the same post for multiple times or dates at once. A step in the right direction for sure but this still didn't solve our need for bulk uploading.

Still, Buffer saved us a lots of time when we wanted to easily queue up a few tweets here and there for later in the day. But for us, it was actually a step backwards in efficiency to manage ALL of our distribution through Buffer.

As always seems to be the case, someone had the same issue and has developed a solution. We are now also using a service aptly titled BulkBuffer, which allows us to bulk upload a CSV and it will automatically place the contents into our Buffer, following our defined schedules and on the correct accounts.

Bulk Buffering a SpreadSheet of Tweets

The ability to just “drop” a big list of Tweets into Buffer and it will sort them into our pre-defined time-slots is huge for us. Now, those big lists of 50 tweets only take about 5 minutes to put together and upload.

If this isn't really relevant to you or you aren't a heavy distributor of owned content, you are likely sharing relevant content in your field. This is likely found on-the-fly or you may block out "curation time". 

We've set up a curation quota for our accounts: at least 5 articles / day / account. Quality control and tweet crafting on curated and shared pieces can be as time consuming as any other content you share. Not to mention actually finding the content.

This brings me to the next issue: finding and sharing relevant content.

4. Finding and Sharing Others' Content

TL;DR: We had a great stream of evergreen content in our Twitter feed but we knew we needed to differentiate our content. We tried using Feedly to distribute a ratio of owned vs shared content but couldn't make it work well with our small team and big curation needs. Quality assurance of the shared content prevented us from automating the process. We didn't want to automate curation, so what could we automate then? 

Appropriating and referencing content isn't lazy. It's not dirty, low-down content theft either. As long as you are upfront about the source and make appropriate citations to authors, there's nothing but gains to be made by sharing others' hard work.

While sharing third-party content is indeed quicker than writing an original post, trying to do it right takes up significant amounts of time.

Twitter makes it really easy to wantonly share others’ content in the form of re-tweets or just grabbing a tweet and slapping quotes around it. It’s also really easy to grab a link from a piece of content you like and use a browser plug-in to send it right along.

How do you know when to share your vs. others’ content?

You may have seen something along the lines of “the Golden Ratio of sharing”. Essentially, it's a short way of describing how much first-person, third-person, and promotional material to put into your stream. Check out this post on the Buffer blog with all of the different posting ratios you can try as well as their origins and what to post. In my opinion, any of these are just a benchmark from where you would discover your own perfect mix.

The traditional Golden Ratio looks like this:

  • 30% Your Content
  • 60% Awesome, Relevant Third-Party Content
  • 10% Promotional Material / Selling

I'd love to tell you that we are following this Golden Ratio and that you should too but really, it's going to depend on your product and audience. Before you can even begin to think about ratios you need to come up with a structure / workflow for your curation. While you will undoubtedly share as things come, there is enough content on the web that you can search at the same time everyday and find something new to share.

In our case, our first attempts at team curation started out by disparately adding content to our buffer with no internal consultation, guidance, or structure. If one team member saw something appropriate, he would add it to the Buffer; it wouldn't be recorded anywhere, and there was no accountability or structure.

We then tried collaborating through a Feedly account to source, mark, and later share relevant content in our mix.

Moblized Team Feedly Account

While this was great amazing for finding relevant content to our industry, we weren't able to get it integrated with working with our distribution on Twitter.

Here were the primary reasons:

  • We have to completely read each piece to make sure it's relevant and on-topic as Feedly is a fairly unfiltered stream of each RSS account.
  • Attributing the post is difficult as we want to reference the @usernames not just the URL (Increases exposure / engagement)
  • We want to maximize each share by having it fit with one of our 10 targeted accounts

(Note: We have since implemented a successful curation strategy using Curata combined with RSS imported into our Google Spreadsheet of Tweets. The methods and technicality of this system are beyond the scope of this piece)

The overarching problem with Feedly and content curation was a matter of effective filtration and managing the curation process in one place. 

While just setting up the Feedly account was a huge leap beyond scanning Twitter streams or Googling content, the analysis of the content for length, type of content, attribution, etc. all needed to happen manually.

Now, if you don't care about ensuring the quality in the content that you link to, then be my guest, automate this process with IFTTT or Zapier. 

The problems with this type of automation, especially with Twitter, bring me to this next time-waster.

5. Good vs Bad Automation

TL;DR: We considered automating our curation but decided against it because our brand relies on the integrity and quality of the content we share. Now that I don't have to focus on typing tweets manually and spending hours scheduling them, I can start figuring out how to refine and automate the process to save even more time; all without seeming robotic. But to what end...What's the strategy here?

Automation and algorithmic Tweeting can really improve your productivity.

The evolution of my Twitter automation has looked like this:

  • Manually Tweeting 25-50 times per day
  • Master spreadsheet of all Tweets to copy and paste into Twitter manually
  • Automated Tweeting of that spreadsheet to Twitter with scheduled Buffer posts interspersed
  • Uploads of variations of the spreadsheet to Bulk Buffer which posts to our Buffer Schedules

I went from 3-5 hours of Twitter management per day for just ONE account to less than 30 minutes per day for TEN accounts that generate 28 million impressions per week.

I wouldn't call what I've done true automation (I'm still manually tackling most of it) but I am working towards creating a workflow that will eliminate even more manual steps.

With a solution Like IFTTT (If This Then That) or Zapier, you can easily create rules that will trigger whenever a tracked action happens on your Twitter account. For example, if I'd rather not manually add my Tweets to my master spreadsheet by hand, I can create an IFTTT “Recipe” that will trigger every time my account Tweets.

It will then take that tweet, separate it into whatever parts I define, and place it into a designated Google Spreadsheet.

IFTTT Twitter to Google Drive

You can do a lot more than that. Here are the triggers for Twitter accounts on IFTTT (when you can make an action happen):

  • New Tweet By You (any tweet, with a specific hashtag, or from a geographic location)
  • Your @Handle Mention
  • When you post a link
  • Get a new follower
  • Favorite a Tweet
  • When a Tweet matches your search query
  • New tweet by anyone in an area

With those triggers, you can perform any of these actions below:

Using Twitter with IFTTT

There are an increasing number of solutions like this available such as Zapier, which has a bit more power and connectability with other services.

But perhaps you have found yourself the holy grail of automation tools for your social accounts?

It may be able to:

  • Auto-welcome new followers
  • Auto-Follows / Direct messages anyone who follows you
  • Automatically favorite everything with X, Y and Z hashtags
  • Will retweet anything that mentions your business

It's pretty impressive indeed. You can accomplish all of those tasks through a variety of means, but I don't recommend it without extreme caution.

On some media this works out better than others: Pinterest pins, Instagram hearts, Facebook Likes, typically anything visual where you don't need a whole lot of textual support for your engagement.

But on Twitter, where text is the principal communication, it is really obvious when something is automated. If you are using a fairly rudamentary “Prefix <Tweet to Copy> Check it Out!” or “Thanks for the follow, <Insert @User>, looking forward to joining your conversations!” you make it quite clear that you are too busy to respond.

Often, users that have too many automations of this type flood their feed with unfettered spam, which can drive legitimate users away while retaining other, automated and spammy users.

What you should be automating?

  • Content / Keyword / Brand Alerts and preliminary actions based from these alerts (ex: Mention ? IFTTT / Zapier ? GoogleSpreadsheet of new followers / your own tweets)
  • Specific announcements during campaigns / Any type of social post that will be recurring and with general consistency)
  • Infrequent “Thank You” messages for retweets, follows, etc (Try grouping new follows into one thank you Tweet)
  • Posting on a schedule (buffer, hootsuite, etc)

What you probably shouldn't be automating

  • Blind Retweeting (without extremely good filters)
  • Direct messaging (right now, the DM inbox is just a spam folder for most users)
  • Unfiltered RSS feeds directly into your social stream - You should at least read over the post you plan on sharing (exception if this is owned media)
  • Follows (it's technically against Twitter guidelines plus it's bad form)

There are lots of situations that can be automated in this space but I only recommend automating if you plan on taking the time to make it as human as possible.

Twitter is a spew of nonsense and lazy automation from a great many people. Make your accounts stand out by putting in the extra hours of initial research and setup and you will end up with stronger accounts in the long run.

But the strength, image, and definition of our accounts until this point far had little to do with avoiding Twitter automation and were more a byproduct of the content we share. If you asked me to look back and reflect on what our strategy was, my answer would have been this: try to make it work, don't let it suck.

While that's a fine marketing battle cry, it's no way for a business to thrive.

This brings me to probably the most important area that I've fixed since beginning my Twitter Marketing.

6. Not Having a Strategy

TL;DR: I've created an efficient workflow for managing our accounts but now that we are able to consistently generate content, we need to examine our strategy again. Before, our content distribution was piecemeal and intermittent; now that we have a steady flow of Twitter content, we need to make sure we're are maintaining quality and driving the results we want. Once we settle on the content to push, when, and why, how do we make our networks more social and not all media.

You don't need to have it all worked out, clearly I didn't when I first started on our accounts. The more I templated things and stuck to my designs, the easier it became to fill in the gaps. The easier the gaps were to fill, the more time I had left over to optimize other tasks. Eventually, these optimizations turned into my workflow and suddenly I found that I was accomplishing the work of 5-10 full-time social media interns in a few hours per week.

Perhaps it's not necessarily obvious, but what I'm using behind the scenes is super custom to my own needs and those of my workflows. Much of what I've physically built to make everything possible is a disgustingly complex Google Spreadsheet that acts as a full-blown social media management web app. 

Really, it's 1 of 4 components that comprise my distribution system:

  • My Google Sheets App
  • Curata 
  • Buffer
  • BulkBuffer

Even though my workflow is fairly complete, applying and defining a strategy that can govern their use is another story. Finding a software / app that allows you to connect a number of different services together and manage them from one dashboard can be instrumental to your campaign management. For me, it just isn't possible with so custom of a solution.

Besides needing to figure out how to regulate and manage our strategy without the aid of a purpose-built solution, we needed should also have a clear idea of why we were on our given channels, not just Twitter.

If we defined the purpose of each medium and the types of content that comes out of each social channel from the start, you wouldn't have struggled to update and maintain them all.

For example, let's define a hypothetical retail company's Twitter account:

It will be dedicated to distributing news about your products / deals / and events. The message you may want to send is that your company has great deals, often, and are all about community engagement. If you then decide that every day you will highlight 3 products from your inventory, 1 upcoming event, and 1 running promotion, you can then break that down into what it actually means in terms of your commitment.

Even now, our strategy and content commitments are still changing but they are surely more well defined than the desperate scrape for posts that it once was.

Here's a quick breakdown of my main Twitter strategy:

6 types of Tweets and their purpose:

  1. Blog Posts - bring traffic to the blog, which drives traffic to app profiles and builds our mailing list with subscribers.
  2. Curated Content - breaks up our self-promotional material and helps offer what we think are the best articles in a niche
  3. Guest Posts - Appropriated content published with permission. Fills out our content offering and increases exposure for the authors.
  4. Our Internal Landing Pages - any page of an app, collection of apps, review, etc. These are our inherent, owned content beyond blog posts.
  5. Vendor Posts - Written by our listed apps' writers, these posts are not ours and help software vendor's content reach new audiences.
  6. Comparisons - direct mention of two solutions that compete. This generates engagement between fans of either and brings awareness to us as well as helping users of either who didn't know about the alternatives.

Each of the above categories has its own Sheet inside of our Master Google Spreadsheet.

There is a “Randomizer” on each sheet that chooses 1 of the 3 unique variants of each Tweet and creates a master list of that category's pool of selectable Tweets.

Another sheet has a column that is essentially the list of Tweets to be exported. It organizes them in a changeable, account-specific way.

A typically configuration may look like  this:

  • Blog Post 
  • Curated Post
  • Comparison
  • Curated Post
  • Internal Offering

There is one final sheet that removes any duplicates from the previously randomized list and gives me a final list of Tweets to export.

This is then uploaded to Bulk Buffer, which then publishes them to our Buffer queue, which has our predefined schedule on it.

It all runs in the background once set, eliminating the need to even think about our profiles except to publish fresh Tweets for new content (which is then added to the master spreadsheet and is now incorporated into the next export).

Having everything function quickly and efficiently frees me up to focus on starting to be more social with our Twitter accounts.

It allows me to start working on my next area of inefficiency...

7. Outreach and Engagement

TL;DR: I've come up with a strategy that involves different types of owned and curated content. Now that we have a steady stream of content and a relative strategy, we can focus on reaching out and building some conversations surrounding content and making more meaningful connections with our networks. I've started doing outreach to influencers via BuzzSumo, but we still lack the time to engage at a deep level with everyone who shares our content.

There is still a bit of ambiguity as to how we reach out to influencers as well as those mentioned in our posts. For the most part, for any post that directly mentions a bunch of solutions (typically potential new vendors for the marketplace) I will directly @Mention their account to let them know they were included in a post.

It's not hard to craft a few (even 10-15) custom Tweets that explain that they were referenced in a post and to Buffer those posts on a schedule (since if I just queued it the post would go out after the 50+ pre-buffered posts from the spreadsheet.

The real difficulty comes with outreach to influencers who you'd like to see, engage with, or share your content. As I mentioned way back near the top of this post, I have a hard time finding the time to create those deep social connections with our network since it's so large. In order to help automate outreach to influencers, I developed another Tweet-generating spreadsheet that works in conjunction with a bit of research through BuzzSumo.

BuzzSumo is a platform for content marketing and SEO agencies to discover engaging content and outreach opportunities. It's a great research tool. I use it to see what types of content do the best in a category that either I have written about, or am considering writing content for.

Here's how the research and Tweet-generation process looks:

Use BuzzSumo to search for the general topic of the post to be promoted (example: for this post I'll be looking up Twitter Management or something similar)

I focus on the total shares, how recent the post is, and (of course) the title and content of the post. If the Twitter share count is high, I usually go and check the content more thoroughly.

Once I've settled on the Title and content matching up fairly well, I look at who actually shared it, which is one of BuzzSumo's most unique features.

BuzzSumo for Finding Influencers

You can see that the sharers list is pretty awesome. You can filter by the type of sharer (influencer, journalist, company, etc) and can also sort by their retweets, authority, and more. While no one size fits all in this situation, I will usually filter for Page Authority. I find that it gives me a fairly accurate list of legitimate influencers within the target space.

BuzzSumo Influencer Discovery

Because I want to then filter for a higher follower count / accounts whose bio contain “Social Media or Twitter” in the text, I export the data from BuzzSumo to a Google SpreadSheet, where I then refine the filtering to acquire a list of 15-25 ideal influencers. The data you export from BuzzSumo containts users' Twitter account names as well, which makes it really easy to just create a column of the 25 handles that I want to target.

I take this list of accounts and put it into a Spreadsheet that generates 3-5 variations of text CTAs for these influencers as well as a link to our content. Typically the message is something like, “@Influencer - We're sharing how we manage our Twitter Account, Check it out <link here>”

Auto Generating Tweets to Influencers

Once I have a full list of tweets ready, I export it the same way I do for our main accounts, upload it via Bulk Buffer, and it is then in Buffer ready to go. But, because these are supposed to go out with the promotion of the content itself, I then just hit “Share Now” in Buffer rather than letting them post according to the schedule (and because they are @Mentions, they show up on those users feeds but don't flood our account).


If this sounds like a lot of outwards promotion and not a lot of “engagement” that's because it is! 

We are understaffed, each filling multiple roles, and constantly trying to build a product rather than manage social media accounts. At the same time, we recognize the value of promoting via Twitter and sharing our content. This is why I have had to find a way to make it work.

At the end of the day, I still don't automate and am not efficient in all the ways I'd like to be, but everyday I am refining the process. Each day that I improve my efficiency by a few minutes , I am able to spend that developing new ways to automate the process.

I'd like to follow up this post with a more detailed account of all of the different apps that I've tried to use to get to this point. But sadly, I'm not quite efficient enough to find the time for that just yet.

What should I be doing differently? I would love to hear your advice or if you have gotten some ideas from my trials and tribulations.

Let me know in the comments!

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