Social Media’s Little Helpers

In the past weeks, I’ve blogged about how overwhelming social-media (SM) can be. Build a platform; get your name out there; attract a following. As if writing isn’t time-consuming enough, there’s marketing to do. (F. Scott Fitzgerald partied; Hemingway fished; Joyce…well, never mind; I tweet. Something’s wrong with this picture.)

I use two tools to simplify my social media management, and am adding a third to writing management this month. Other tools exist, and I’d recommend investing a few hours to discover what will help you contain your SM animal. Then go write!

BITLY—This website shrinks a twitter-limit-busting link to the point I can actually say a few words about its content, with a couple of spaces left for it to be retweeted. https://bitly.com/shorten/
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BUFFER—I just returned from a weekend with four octogenarians, my daughter-in-law (graduating law-school valedictorian) and son (graduating in the top ten in August—he “married up”). They are infinitely more important than my very-important writing endeavor. By parking tweets in buffer (you link a twitter and/or facebook account each time you log in), I didn’t think about losing momentum during a champagne toast. Buffer may be the single most important tool I’m using for SM. (It can be used with facebook, but I prefer facebook posts more in-the-moment, tailored to that particular medium with photos and such.) https://bufferapp.com/

SCRIVENER—This writing-management tool should be included. It organizes your thoughts and ideas for your manuscript, making a kind of electronic file so you can stay organized and retain threads and research that wander off (probably in search of chocolate and bandages if editing—see http://blog.nlbhorton.com/?p=498). I’m just beginning to learn how to use it, but think it’s going to work spectacularly well, and will eliminate the time I spend chasing down oddities I want to include, but can’t quite remember where I put them. http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php

FACEBOOK’S DELAYED POSTS—Facebook enables an account to write a post, then schedule it for publication later. In the professional facebook page, click the clock icon in the bottom left corner, then add the date and time you want the post to appear. Even during the SECOND champagne toast, I didn’t think about SM because I scheduled a facebook post with photo for every day I was away. Regardless of my location, facebook and twitter carried on.

And of course, you can schedule WordPress blog posts to publish anytime—even now, as I sitting in my hermitage office, looking up a mountain valley, resuming the publishing fight.

I’m interested in any tricks of the SM trade you’ve discovered. Care to share?[subscribe2]

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