Social Media Automation, What Is It?
In the simplest terms, social media automation is the ability to schedule posts, stories, content, images, etc. to social media sites such as twitter and Facebook, through the use of specifically designed tools. These tools communicate with the social media service through available APIs (Application Program Interface), sometimes public and sometimes leveraging more secure methods such as OAuth.
How does it work?
The task of creating content to share, planning when to post it, and strategizing where to post is a time consuming effort. Automating Social Media marketing helps bloggers, self-promoters, marketers and the like with coordinating and planning where and when content is shared. Stitchz Social Media Automation provides the functionality necessary to assist in the creation, planning and posting of social media content.
Getting Started (Step by Step)
Stitchz organizes social media accounts and identities into groups or campaigns. Campaigns are Stitchz's way of simplifying the tracking of number of posts and engagement by your followers on each respective social platform.
Before you get started, you'll need to add the social network identities you'd like to post with to your Stitchz account. From your account page, click the shield icon on the right side of your Social Identities list, Figure 1.
Figure 1. - Add new social identity
A new window will open giving you the option to select a new social identity, Figure 2.
Figure 2 - Adding a new social identity
Click the icon for the social network identity you wish to add, you will be redirected to the respective service, asked to login and redirected back to Stitchz. After you've registered your social identities with Stitchz, click on the Social menu item at the top of the window, Figure 3.
Figure 3 - Social Automation
A new social campaign form will appear, Figure 4, where you enter your campaign name and click "Create".
Figure 4 - New Social Campaign form
When your new social campaign has been created you will be able to change the campaign name or, more importantly, add additional social identities, from the details page.
Adding a Social Identity
Click the plus (+) in the "Social Profiles" section to select from your list of registered identities, Figure 5.
Figure 5 - Social Campaign Details
A new window will open allowing you to select which identity to add, browse through the list of available identities by clicking the orange arrows then select the one you want, Figure 6. Note, the social identities in the list are restricted to those that are allowed to post or share to their respective network.
Figure 6 - Add your social identity to your campaign
The social identity you clicked will be added to the list of available Social Profiles that can be used to post with.
Add a New Member to Your Campaign
If there are multiple users associated with your campaign you can add new members to it by clicking the plus (+) in the "Members" section. A new window will open where you can enter the email address of the person you wish to join the campaign, Figure 7.
Figure 7 - New member form
An email will be sent with a unique link that, when clicked, will add the member to your campaign. An example email message is below with the unique link in the middle of the message, Figure 8.
Figure 8 - New member request email
Clicking the link will take you to the login page and add the account to the social campaign.
Creating and Automating a Post
Now that your campaign is setup, you're ready to create and post some content. Click the "Create Post" link in the menu navigation on the left, Figure 9.
Figure 9 - Create a new post link
The "Social Media Sharing" page will open with your social identities listed to the left and a text area to write your content on the right, Figure 10.
Figure 10 - create a new social media post
As you create your content the total size of your post (number of characters) will be displayed so you don't go over some social service's post size limits (ahem, twitter). Feel free to add a photo and/or a link to a web page by clicking the camera or link icons. If you add a photo it cannot be larger than 15000(h)x5000(w) or 3 MB in size.
You can schedule the content to be posted at a future date by changing the scheduled date and time. It should be noted that posts are associated with a time limited unique token provided by each respective social network. Scheduling a post too far into the future could cause the post to fail if the token's lifespan has exceeded. Logging into Stitchz.net regularly with the associated account will prevent a post failure.
Before clicking save, make sure to select which social identity your new content should be posted to. Click the small icon in the upper right corner to select the social identity. When the social identity has a thin red bar on the right side it has not been select, however, when it has a thin green bar it is selected, Figure 11.
Figure 11 - a selected social media identity
When everything is set and you're ready to post click the "Save" button. You'll be redirected to the list of your shares, Figure 12.
Figure 12 - list of shares posted, schedule to post, and failed
If you scheduled the post you will find it under the "Scheduled Content" tab, and after it's been posted it can be found in the "Posted Content" tab, Figure 13.
Figure 13 - Scheduled Content tab
After the post has been shared to the respective social network there are a few stats that are tracked. Each post's total likes and total comments are listed, as well as a quick "repost" button to post the content back to the social network again, Figure 14.
Figure 14 - Posted Content tab
In closing, automating Social Media marketing helps bloggers, self-promoters, marketers, and the like with coordinating and planning when and where content is shared. Stitchz Social Media Automation provides this functionality and helps in the creation, planning and posting of social media content. Start using Stitchz Social Media Automation for free today!