AssistantAngel is celebrating its sixth year as a Virtual Assistant / Social Media Management company. We are very blessed to work with many amazing clients across the United States, Canada and world-wide.
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT ~ Back to Basics
In looking back over the past four years, I am reminded at how “basic” social media can be at times. Often people ask me which social media tools I recommend and which tools I personally use.
Social Media is a tool to get your information to your ideal audience. The key to successfully utilize social media is staying organized with a clear and concise message to the correct audience. Below is a list of the social media management tools that I use each month. Some tools I use daily.
This list will give you a good idea of how my team and I are able to stay organized and stay on top of the latest social media trends.
IN THE CLOUD
1. Gmail – Having my email kick over to a gmail account has enabled me to grab email when I am on the go. Whether it is from my smartphone, laptop or computer, I can access emails and my email folders at any time. This helps when I am searching for a client’s particular email.
2. Dropbox – With clients adding more and more images to their websites, blogs and social media posts, it is important to have great quality images. I like to use Dropbox so my client can share images with me. Dropbox also has a feature of renaming folders, to help keep your Dropbox organized (i.e. by Client Name, etc)
3. Google Drive – I have become very fond of Google Drive. It is a seamless way to share documents (similar to word, excel, images, etc) with other contacts. I often keep information on separate tabs for the Google drive doc. I also like to make sure my client and I share a Google Drive document with pertinent information that is available to them, any time they need it.
4. Keeping track of client’s events and deadlines is very important. Each week I utilize at least 2 calendars to make sure I remember AND also have a backup (in the event the internet should go down).
◊ Google Calendar – I enjoy the flexibility of adding / removing events on Google Calendar and having it access my phone and computer. One feature I especially like is the REMINDER feature. You can have the event send you an email or notification of the event.
o Quick Tip: When adding an event to my calendar, I include as much information as possible: Call-in number, link to the client’s website and any other information for the call. This way prior to my appointment, I have everything available to prepare for my appointment.
◊ Monthly Calendar (paper). I have disciplined myself to make sure when I add a calendar event to my online calendar, I also add it to my wall calendar. Often when I am speaking with a client on the phone, I need to schedule or touch base with them in a couple weeks. By quickly viewing my upcoming appointments, I can see the best time for our next meeting.
One motto I attempt to follow with ALL areas of my social media management business is to “Touch It Only Once”. What that means to me is if it is an email, request, calendar update, etc. I only want to “touch” it once.
5. In order to achieve this with email, which I get HUNDREDS of emails each day, I utilize a tool called: Follow Up Then. You can “forward” the email so it shows up in your inbox at the time you specify. For example, you can forward an important email to email@example.com and that email will show up in your inbox in 3 days. When the email comes back, I can address it or delay it again. This has helped to stay organized.
6. A second tool I enjoy for Email Management is Boomerang for Gmail. Boomerang allows you to send a message at a specific time. For example, if you are working late at night, it is not always appropriate to email a client at 11:30 PM. However, you can easily schedule the Boomerang Email (and I ALWAYS cc myself so I have a copy of the email) to be distributed the next business day.
7. To keep clients tasks organized (by day, week, month, 6 months, etc) I utilize Asana.com. Asana is nice because you can create “projects” for each client as well as add tags and due dates. Please Note: Asana is also a great tool for teams, where you can “assign” different tasks to different team members. I like the mobile version of Asana that synchs with the online portal. Again, I can review tasks and update easily from my mobile device.
8. Engaging on various social media platforms can be a daunting task. I am starting to enjoy utilizing Hootsuite again (for a while I thought the platform was lagging). Hootsuite has recently released some new updates that make it worth a second look:
◊ Add Hootsuite plugin to Chrome. If you find a great article online, you can make sure that the article is saved and distributed as you like on Hootsuite.
◊ Hootsuite also integrates with Google+, LinkedIn (personal and company pages), Facebook (personal and fan pages), Twitter, WordPress and more.
o Please Note: Just because a tool ALLOWS you to easily post on various platforms at one time, does not mean it is best to do so. (See previous blog about Social Media Engagement)
SOCIAL MEDIA NEWS
9. Finding the latest trend in social media can be challenging. Social media is CONSTANTLY changing. Here are some excellent sites that give you cutting edge information that you can immediately begin to implement for your clients:
- Social Media Examiner
- Social Mouths
10. The clock, and management of it, is absolutely vital to ensure that I am able to accomplish ALL that I need to in a day…and make room for the “unexpected”. I keep an alarm clock on my desk. I work in block sections of time. I set the timer and do not check email or texts during that time (unless it is an emergency).
Also, by giving myself permission to have “free / research” block time, I am able to have a buffer in my schedule to handle the unforeseen things that happen each and every day.
11. Post-It-Notes – are my best friend! I keep them on my desk, in my briefcase, purse and in my car. Whenever I have to jot myself a quick note (or remember something for later) I jot it down on a Post-It-Note. At the end of the day, when I clear my desk and prepare for the next day (it’s not always CLEAR of tasks mind you!), I make sure to handle each Post-It-Note, one at a time with an action: write email, reminders, schedules, add an appointment, etc.
PEACEFUL WORK ENVIRONMENT
12. I do my best work when I have a peaceful and positive work environment. That means, my desk is organized, I have thrown away trash, coffee cups, etc. “A clean desk is a clean mind…”
I also make sure I have music in the background. For me, I have found classical music gets my juices flowing and allows me the creative spark I need to stay focused and on task.
What Are Your Thoughts?
Is there a TOOL that you utilize each day that you can NOT live without? I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas. I hope this list has been helpful and gives you some additional tools to consider as you manage your business and your clients.
STAY CONNECTED. Feel free to connect with Angel. Angel is on social media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and more. If you know of someone who wants to become a Virtual Assistant, have them sign up for Angel’s free Virtual Assistant Training Network. (Please Note: the VATN Training Network will be having many new changes in 2014…stay tuned!) Sign up for the latest updates from Angel here.
Thank you for your continued support. I will connect with you soon!