Scheduling with Sprout SocialComing up with interesting, timely content for your followers is no easy task and one that requires constant attention.

Until recently, the only way to make sure that your followers were seeing your relevant content at a specific time was to constantly pay attention and actively engage at those targeted times. Now, scheduling tweets is one of the most beneficial tools that business tweeters have seen since the official adoption of hashtags – but a warning – it can also be the most dangerous.

By combining the power of well developed discovery tools, alerts and a Tweet scheduler you can position yourself as the industry ‘go-to’ for news and information, gaining expert status in the eyes of the market.

Setting Up Your Discovery Tools

The first, and most obvious alert to set up is your own brand name and several permutations of it. Every time that anyone on the Internet mentions you, it’s imperative that you’re aware of it so that you can either address the concern or share the praise with your followers.

Second, monitor your niche. Identify the specific geographic or distribution channel terms that apply to your business. The keywords that your SEO campaign centers around is a good first place to look for ideas. This alert will enable you to stay on top of trends as they happen and pass relevant information on to the crowd.

Finally, know your competition. By constantly keeping yourself apprised of what’s going on around your competitors you’ll be able to find soft spots in the market, offer unique sales advantages and unearth new ways to expand your target market.

Deciding What (and When) to Share

With appropriate discovery tools and alerts in place, you can now extract industry-leading information and share it with your followers. Clearly, urgent breaking news should be passed on immediately to maximize the benefit to readers. Tips, tricks and interesting stories can be scheduled to ensure that the maximum number of people are exposed to the message at times that they’re looking for it.

Give people browsing, image-heavy links on Sunday afternoons. That’s the time when lifestyle and aspirational blogs see the most traffic and highest time on page numbers.

Research and informational content should go out in the mid-morning, early in the week to give it the maximum amount of opportunity to be shared. Content with the goal of converting visitors into a sign-up or purchase perform best in the mid-afternoon when people are transitioning from browsing at work to searching from home.

Too Much of a Good Thing?

Scheduling messages to be strategically viewed at the right time will benefit your readers readers, but you risk losing credibility if your messages are seen to robotic or if they provide basic information that followers could just as easily have found on their own.

In order to remain genuine and truly beneficial to your audience, you must view scheduling as simply the ‘bones’ of your social media campaign, but not the ‘flesh’.

Social media personality is built around off-the-cuff comments and answers to your followers’ calls for help. Personality is built by weighing in with an honest and thoughtful opinion when there’s a debate raging online. These are the things that make the difference between being yet another news feed vs being a new media success.

What’s your say?

How do you find content to pass on to your readers? Is there a particular time of day that you’ve found best to pass specific messages on? Join the conversation by commenting below and you could be featured on Fan Friday!