Content – Is Yours Planned?

It’s Monday morning and you are getting ready for a busy work week. You should be concentrating on your business and your clients but instead you are trying to find ‘stuff’ to share on your social media platforms. Sound familiar? Has this happened to you?

We’ve all been there, done that. However, instead of frantically searching for something share-worthy, there’s a better way! If you had a social media strategic plan with a content calendar, you would know what to share and when! That would be great, right? A social media consultant can help you create such a plan and content calendar specific to your business and your social media goals. I highly recommend it.

What if you didn’t get a social media plan done and you haven’t planned anything?

There are several ways to curate content ‘in the spur of the moment’. You can go to each platform and share (Facebook, G+, LinkedIn), RT (Twitter), repost (Instagram) and repin (Pinterest). If you are like most people, you’d be sharing whatever pops out at you. I bet you already do that, right? Want to know an even better way?

Did you know that Facebook has some cool features for curating content? I highly recommend you look to Facebook and consider cross promoting some of what you find there to other platforms as well, meaning find great stuff on Facebook and share it to G+, Twitter, Pinterest etc.

Here are six surprisingly fast ways to curate content from Facebook to Facebook AND to your other social media platforms.

1) Trending Topics – Available on your personal profile, on the right hand side of your newsfeed. Look to see what is ‘trending’ and click on the trend you think is share-worthy for your audience. When you click on the trend, Facebook will show many related posts; pick one to share to whatever page it is relevant to. [Remember, you don’t just have to just Facebook-share, you can also click through to the original post and share to you other social media platforms if the topic is right.]

Why this is so powerful? With the new Facebook algorithm in place, Facebook places high value on link posts as well as trending posts. Doing this, with timing for the page perfected (see your page insights to find when the best time to post is), will almost guarantee you get decent engagement and reach on this post if you share to Facebook.

2) News Ticker – On the same side (on your personal Facebook profile) as where you see your ‘trending topics’, you will also find your news ticker. Are you using this option? I do. Here’s how I use it. I look for patterns. If I see one of my friends talk about something or respond to a Facebook page post, I note it. If I see a second friend in the mix in a short period of time, I’ll go check out the conversation. If three of more friends are talking about a topic, post or with the same page, I need to go and join the conversation and probably share the content or something similar!

Why is this so powerful? I use my ticker to find out when people start to talk about holidays, seasons, new gadgets and more. I am often so busy with my clients’ marketing, I might forget to work on my own. Watching my news ticker gives me instant content and content ideas and I like the fact that sometimes I see a pattern before the topic is officially trending so I can be ahead of the curve!

3) Interest Lists – Who doesn’t love and use these?! (Please, tell me that you do!) If you haven’t fully utilized interest lists, go to Mari Smith’s brilliant piece on interest lists. Read it here. I use my own lists, as well as lists others have made and I subscribe to, to curate content! It is much easier to find specific posts. For example, think about how powerful it would be to have several 100 local Facebook pages in one feed! It would make it easier to interact and share from those pages.

Why is this so powerful? It saves a lot of time! With the click of a button you’ve filtered the Facebook newfeed into fun-sized bits of news and content, making it easy to find the right type of content and share the best stuff.

4) Facebook Groups – Just sit back and watch your groups! You’ll find some great content to share if you monitor what’s being said and shared in the groups, that is, if you are in the right groups. I am part of several social media related groups. Sometimes, an article gets shared in the groups and we discuss the topic. Other times, someone might ask other group members to share it. Whichever it is, as long as you are part of the right groups, groups can be a great source for industry-related content.

Why is this so powerful? Social media is all about sharing and being social. Groups give you that feeling of belonging and social engagement. People will share information with you and ask questions, too. For example, I am part of a great Pinterest Facebook group and the moderator shares relevant and timely Pinterest articles to the group as soon as they are published, making her a trusted source and us happy recipients! I always make sure to watch the notification for that group, because it’s a great source for breaking Pinterest news.

5) Hashtag Search – Ever since Facebook introduced hashtags, I’ve adopted the use of hashtags on Facebook. I know not everyone uses them or is a fan of them, yet they can help you find great content you otherwise wouldn’t be able to find. Try a variety of hashtags if you can’t find what you are looking for the first time your search and remember that not everyone shares everything to ‘public’. The best use for hashtag searches I’ve found is for very specific industry related surges. For example, finding articles related to golf is as easy as putting #golf in the search bar. Getting more specific, if you are looking for golf pro advice, try #golftips or #golfpro.

Why is this so powerful? Hashtag searches work for Facebook pages, too. If you are admin to a very specific niche market, it can be tough to come up with the right type of content to share to those pages (think Plumbing, Electric, Consulting, Law etc). Conducting a hashtag search from your page can yield success in finding niche specific posts!

6) Graph Search – Another great way to find new content (and connect with new people) is to use graph search. Graph search is an under-utilized Facebook tool; many people don’t use it at all and those who do, often do not use it to its full potential. I recently read a great piece on how to use graph search to create the right content for your audience. It made me realize you can also use graph search to find out what your current fans are interested in and find and post the content they want with a quick targeted hashtag search (see #5).

Why is this so powerful? Giving people what they want to see right in their newsfeed is powerful! Being to one to serve it to them is a great way to gain loyal fans and followers. Who doesn’t want to find new friends and influence people? ;)

Besides sharing posts you see in your newsfeed, how have you been curating content from Facebook? Will you try out some of these suggestions? Please let me know how you did!

Read more: Bad Advice Time: Cross-Post Content to Save Time