If you’re using social media to market your business and connect with customers then you probably know how frustrating it can be to maintain several social profiles or pages at once.
If you’ve got a lot of interactions on any of your social accounts and you’re attempting to manage your social media via your phone then your phone is probably alerting you frequently about new likes, comments, retweets, etc. These constant alerts can be annoying while also draining your phone battery.
If you’re trying to manage your social accounts on your desktop or laptop then you’ve probably got email notifications set-up and you bounce between the various social websites to update your status, share content and interact with your audiences.
Using the mobile apps and individual websites for each social network is fine, but it’s not a very streamline method of sharing content and monitoring engagement.
And, this is why third-party developers have created social media dashboards.
What is a social media dashboard?
Social media dashboards have various features and benefits, but all of them allow you to access multiple social accounts from a single website or app. Typical functionality of these dashboards includes the ability to post content to multiple social accounts and then monitor audience interactions with content. Most dashboards will allow you to respond to comments, likes, retweet, etc. and some have extended functionality like URL shorteners, content suggestions, lead discovery and more.
There are also social media dashboards for agencies that allow digital marketing agencies to manage hundreds or thousands of social media accounts for multiple customers. However, most businesses don’t need the robust functionality or expense that are associated with an agency platform.
Do you need a social media dashboard to manage your social marketing?
If you aren’t using social media then the answer is clearly, no. However, if you’re managing more than one social account for your business, it’s probably worth considering the use of a dashboard. Why?
Push content to multiple channels from a single location
Unless you’re posting completely unique content to every social channel, this is a huge time saver. For example, let’s suppose you just finished creating an awesome new blog post (you are creating new blog posts, right? If not, go here to learn why you should be) and you want to post it to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. Without the use of a social media dashboard, you have to go to each social network and post. With a social media dashboard, you just create a single post with a link to your new blog and BOOM … the content is distributed everywhere you specify. (A good dashboard will allow you to choose which networks you post to each time you post.)
Schedule posts and review all posts from a single content calendar
Yes, most social platforms will allow you to schedule your posts in advance without the use of a third-party dashboard. Scheduling posts is a really great way to keep your social accounts alive without the inconvenience of having to manually post to them every few days. However, without a social management dashboard, you still have to go to each social account and create your scheduled posts – no bueno! Instead, get a dashboard that allows you to schedule posts to each network and that also includes a content calendar so that you have an overview of past and future posts.
Monitor responses from all social channels in one place
Again, instead of logging in to each individual social network, the use of a dashboard will allow you to see activity on all your social pages from one intuitive interface. Monitor and respond to maintain engagement with your audiences.
Review analytics and get content ideas
Many dashboards include at least basic reporting or analytics features that allow you to track the growth of your audiences and the popularity of your posts. Additionally, these social management solutions might include content discovery or creation features. You might be able to track keywords or specify RSS feeds to follow. These can both be effective ways to discover current and relevant content for posting.
As you can see there are many benefits to using a social media management solution. The main benefit is, of course, that using a third-party tool to monitor and manage your social marketing efforts saves you time. Online marketing can be extremely time consuming if you’re doing it right, therefore, any aspects that you can streamline or automate without losing the quality of your efforts should be seriously considered.
However, beyond just saving you time a good dashboard will:
- help you stay organized,
- assist you in discovering new content,
- help you find leads,
- and can help increase your response and engagement rates by simplifying the management of your social channels.
Is there anyone who wouldn’t benefit from the use of a social media dashboard?
If you are only posting to a single social network then it probably wouldn’t benefit you as much as if you were posting to many channels. However, you could still benefit from the content discovery features as well as the analytics.
If you’ve decided to use a social media dashboard, what’s next?
Many social dashboards give you the option of a free trial, so start with those. Setting up the dashboards should be pretty easy so it’s not huge time investment to configure one. You will need access to each social account you want to connect to a social dashboard so make sure you have that info before signing up for your free trials.
There are many parts of digital marketing that aren’t simple, but this is not one of them. Look for a dashboard that’s intuitive; the user interface should be extremely simple and straightforward. If you cannot find your way around quickly then it’s not a good fit. Also, you shouldn’t have to watch hours of video or read lengthy manuals to get things going.
Still need help deciding?
Feel free to contact us for assistance. We have a solution that works well for most businesses and we also offer use of our social media dashboard for free when you utilize our social media management services. Let us help you get started with social media marketing today!