10 Nov 2011

3 Simple Ways Scheduling Tweets Can Help Brands… And 3 Ways It Can Hurt

The tactic of scheduling tweets is often discussed by social media strategists across the spectrum. Even though each side of the debate may have valid points, I will argue that scheduling tweets can always have a positive outcome for your brand, if done correctly.
Before I go into how scheduling tweets can help your brand, let me first point out ways scheduling tweets will impact your brand negatively:

  • Scheduling tweets should not take place of your normal tweeting strategy. Doing so would take away from your brand’s ability to engage with its fans in real-time.
  • Scheduling tweets the day before is not always a successful strategy. If you choose to schedule tweets the day before, you should always have a reason for doing so. Being lazy is not a real reason.
  • Spread your scheduled tweets out. By grouping your scheduled tweets together, followers are less likely to respond to each tweet. Instead, spread your tweets out at prime times throughout the day.
Now that you understand not what to do, let’s take a look at three simple ways scheduling tweets can help your brand stick to its overall social media strategy:
  • Use scheduling to tell your brand’s story. Before any writer begins typing a single word, he or she uses an outline to guide the story. Allow your brand to tells its story by scheduling an outline for the day. Think of each scheduled tweet as a chapter of a novel; your chapters should guide your readers through the novel with your help.
  • Generating a number of tweets per day. Depending on what your brand’s strategy may be, scheduling will allow you to reach your tweet quota for the day. Throughout the day, your brand should be tweeting to followers in real-time. However, certain days may be slower than others, which is where scheduling tweets can be very helpful. Even though you have scheduled tweets ready to go, try your best to tweet in real-time. Scheduled tweets cannot take into account daily events.
  • Time-sensitive tweets. Sometimes tweets need to be published at particular times, where real-time may not be as important. A recent example of this is how I scheduled tweets for clients of mine that were running for public office. Just like there are prime times to tweet, there are prime voting times, so in order to make sure we targeted those residents, we scheduled tweets at prime voting times as reminders.
Before scheduling tweets, be sure to have a reason to do so: using scheduling to tell a story, generate a number of tweets per day and time-sensitive tweeting are all great reasons.

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