As a trained researcher, I am a big fan of experiments. So, nowadays, whenever I go on holiday, I queue up a whole bunch of posts using a MavSocial campaign and watch my website stats. What do you think happens?
Before I get to the results, I want to explain something for those who are social media newbies. One of the biggest decisions you will ever make when doing social media marketing is deciding what to measure.
You can measure the increase in sales but then, given the complexity of most sales funnels, it can be difficult to unpick what might have caused any change. This is made even harder by the fact that any smart business should be marketing through several channels.
For example, I use social media, writing in professional magazines for my target market, guest blogging, in-person networking, and attendance at tradeshows. None of these on their own is going to increase my sales but using them together, alongside good old client retention strategies, just might.
At the other end of the scale, you can measure how many people see your posts. The problem with this is that it’s far better to have 5 potential buyers see your stuff than 10,000 people who will never be interested in what you offer. A qualified lead in the hand is worth 5,000 likes on Twitter, as the phrase should go nowadays.
Because of that, I measure something in the middle. All of my holiday posts have links in them and I measure how often those links are clicked. The deal is that, if I can just get people to my website, I can increase the likelihood that they will buy from me. At the very least, I will have raised their awareness of my services, which is a good step to take in marketing while you are sunning yourself on the beach.
Here is the rub, whenever I post new content to my website, traffic surges and I get lots of new interactions. But, obviously, when I am on holiday, no new posts will appear. So what about when I setup automated posting of content that is already there?
The first thing I have learned is that scheduled posting of existing content will not get you the same peaks as brand new stuff. Scheduled posting simple raises the default amount of traffic. What happens is that the boost from the latest piece of new content lasts longer, with traffic not returning back to normal until the schedule runs out of posts. Visit rates sit at between two and five times their default levels right up to the end of the schedule.
Strangely, both social and direct traffic numbers increase markedly during scheduled posting. It may be that scheduled posting encourages people to bookmark articles, which they come back to later.
In short, while having a schedule for reposting existing articles won’t give you the same pleasing peaks as regularly creating new and exciting content, it will encourage more background traffic to your site.