We’ve already made the case that funeral homes need to make social media marketing a part of their advertising strategies, given the increasingly high number of older users frequenting these sites. But since we also know that the thought of adding yet another responsibility to your day can be overwhelming, we’ve put together a simple three-step process that’ll help you cut the time needed to manage your social profiles in half!
Step #1 — Auto-publish your obituaries
Two weeks ago, we recommended that the best place for funeral homes to start their social campaigns is on Facebook. Since the platform is relatively intuitive and enjoys the highest usage rates among online adults, it’s a natural fit for funeral homes looking to boost their presence on popular social channels.
The bulk of the site users who will follow your funeral home’s Facebook page will do so in order to keep track of the obituaries you publish. As a result, the easiest way to engage these followers is to regularly share your death notices on your social profile. And if you really want to save time on your social media campaigns, look for options that allow you to auto-publish your obituaries to your Facebook feed.
This type of integration comes standard with Frazer-powered funeral home websites, but you may also be able to work with a private developer to create a link between your site’s obituaries and your Facebook page. Whatever option you choose, loading this content onto your page automatically will go a long way towards cutting your campaign management time in half!
Step #2 — Use Buffer to pre-load social posts
Of course, obituaries aren’t the only things you’ll want to share on your Facebook page. To keep your followers fully engaged, you’ll also want to post things like:
- Helpful resource articles
- Inspirational quotes
- Fun images
- Links to community resources
- Upcoming event information
Posting each of these updates individually might seem time-consuming, but you can speed up the process by using a free program like Buffer to pre-load your posts. This allows you to save time by batch-processing tasks, rather than logging in and out of your Facebook account to manage your posting needs every time you want your page to update.
Once you’ve set up an account with Buffer, you can connect your funeral home’s Facebook page to your profile and use the program’s interface to create posts that will be posted automatically at pre-determined times in the future. Here’s how it works:
On the “Schedule” screen, use the tabs to set the default times when your pre-loaded posts will go live. For example, if you want to publish one post every weekday (outside of your auto-published obituaries), select the green tabs for Monday-Friday and use the time selection tool beneath that to set the time at which your post will go live.
Next, use the “Buffer” tab to create Facebook posts that include text, images and/or links. Once you’re satisfied with each post, either use the clock icon to set a specific date and time to publish your post or click the green “Buffer” button to have it go live according to the times you set in the “Schedule” section. You can also click “Share Now” if you’d like your post to go up right away.
As you add posts to your Buffer, you’ll see a list grow on your “Buffer” screen, including the dates on which each post will go live. Pre-loading a few weeks’ worth of posts at a time minimizes the daily grind of updating your profiles and increases efficiency. If you’re curious, you can also view statistics on how well each of your past posts has performed under the “Analytics” tab within your Buffer account in order to make future updates even more appealing to your readers.
Step #3 — Allocate 10 minutes a day to engagement
Finally, depending on how active your Facebook page is, you may find that a substantial chunk of your social media marketing time goes to responding to comments left on your updates or leaving messages on other community pages in order to get your funeral home’s name in front of potential customers.
In either case, it’s easy to tell yourself that you’ll sit down and follow up later in the week when you have more time. Unfortunately, this can make the project seem larger and more daunting than it really is, increasing the perceived amount of time required to maintain your profile.
A far better solution is to set aside 10 minutes each day for handling these activities. Not only do people like to see businesses respond to their comments and posts quickly, breaking your engagement time up into 10-minute daily chunks will make your business’ social media marketing needs seem much more manageable!
What other strategies do you use to save time on funeral home social media marketing? Share your favorite tips and tricks in the comments section below!