When I first started handling social media as part of my job, I had very little idea as to exactly how full on it was. Having used my personal Facebook page for almost a decade, I held the belief that most people do – ‘This will be a piece of cake’. How wrong I was.

A Facebook business page is an entity all to its own. The algorithms in place are unknown when you start out, and the thought that it’s as simple as making a post a day is very quickly disabused. I was lucky in that the franchise that I was working for supplied a certain amount of content to carry you through the year. I’m talking the big events, the public holidays, the selling seasons, the tiles that matched up to the annual campaigns that were running. But it was up to me to fill in the blanks.

The social media sites can be fickle things – things that work one day, won’t necessarily work the next. It used to be a standard that you could run a weekly ad campaign to increase your followers and the content that you used – no matter WHAT type of content it was – would be shown to those you’d advertised to. Nowadays, you need fresh, original content – and let’s face it, so many people are focused on their online profiles today that you really have to think outside of the box.

One of the only blessings that I found whilst I was trying to work everything else out was the ability to schedule things in advance. I could take the content provided by the franchise and literally put it in place in one sitting, for a 6 month period. That left me with the job of searching out everything else that had to go in between.

Scheduling seems daunting, but it is really a blessing in disguise. Content curation is one of the most time consuming parts of this role – Imagine what it would be like if you had nothing as a base to work off?

The thing is, even scheduling won’t be a lifesaver for you unless you have some sort of plan to work off of in the first place. Yes, you can have a general idea of posting content related to the seasons, or the holidays, or the events coming up. But what if you’ve had a busy day and you’ve overlooked it?

Sitting down at the start of the year and planning out in quarterly blocks is essential. Especially if you are managing more than one social media account. Even better is having it posted, ON PAPER, in front of you. At the very least, you have an outline of where you are supposed to be at a certain point during the year. And if you’re not matching up to that simple outline, then you know that you need to re-assess what is taking up your time, and where you need to apply more energy.

Having that plan allows you the chance to play with it, allows you the time (and flexibility) to plan for and around it, and allows you to enjoy something that everybody craves – life.

See you in the next run,