Is Social Media a Waste of Time graphicAre you afraid to use social networks because of the time sink they can be for you and your business?

Let me share with you some tools you can use to save you time; and, still allow you to participate in the social media arena.

BufferApp has a free version, and an upgraded (paid) version.

BufferApp allows you to pre-schedule your posts to Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Personally, I use the free version of BufferApp to schedule ten (10) twitter posts; and as the day goes by, I re-fill those ten so that come 8 PM at night there’s 10 posts ready for the next day.

TweetDeck, currently my favorite tool for Twitter gives you the ability to schedule posts far out (much more than the Buffer free version) along with keep track of various searches, your twitter inbox and more.

Another alternative, one that has a lot of flexibility but runs slower than a snail (even on a brand new computer, 16 GB RAM, Intel I7-2700 3.50 GHz CPU) is Hootsuite that beats out both of the above in that you can really get into managing and scheduling with a large number of social networks.

Oh, before I forget, if you get involved in twitter chats, I highly recommend TweetChat.

Now for time saving steps:

  • Schedule out your tweets using BufferApp or TweetDeck or HootSuite.
  • For Facebook, consider using scheduled posts vs. an application.
  • For LinkedIn, while you could use BufferApp or HootSuite, I find it better to really go niche for what you post which means you will be posting more quality, less often. That means you often don’t need a tool to do it for you.

In the end, just like in the road sign picture — stay focused on building your business, and living your life.

Small Business Resource: Customer Loyalty 3.0: How to Avoid Getting Customer Loyalty and Social Media Backwards

Do you have tools or techniques you use to save time on social networking? Share them in the comments below.