Social media marketing doesn’t have to be your tentpole marketing effort. However, if you’re going to do it, you have to commit. Weeks-old Facebook posts will do more harm than good.

Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.

The pitch

Social media marketing doesn’t have to be your tentpole marketing effort.

However, if you’re going to do it, you have to commit. Weeks-old Facebook posts will do more harm than good. If you’re going to spend time on LinkedIn, make sure you stay linked in.

Granted, it’s not always easy. What do you say? When is the best time to post? Logging in to three or four different platforms can be pretty tedious. And distracting.

Well, Sprout Social might be able to help.

The sale

I’ve been using Sprout Social for almost two years, so consider this review somewhat informed.

Sprout Social connects all of your social media profiles into a single interface. Simply log in, and post to whatever account you choose. I can’t tell you the last time I’ve seen any of my clients’ actual Twitter pages. Everything I need to properly manage the account is accessible via Sprout Social’s dashboard.

However, it’s more than a convenient compendium for your online personas; it also takes the complexities out of scheduling posts. You have a couple of options, in fact. You can create a Sprout Queue, in which you designate a number of posts per day at specific times. Type up some content and select “Queue Next.” That’s it. It’ll publish on the next established time, whether it’s in 10 minutes, two hours, or sometime tomorrow.

As you compose a tweet or post, you can also use the embedded calendar feature, which shows you a month-out view. Choose a date and time and you’re done.

Agents can use this to time marketing efforts with effective dates on listing agreements, or around open houses.

With your announcements and pictures and copy ready, schedule a series of social callouts a couple of times per week for each listing. I like to use Sprout Social like a radio campaign, repeating important posts at different times throughout the week as way to better blanket your audience.

You can measure your content’s effectiveness as well. Sprout Social will email you engagement reports, or you can scroll through graphs in your dashboard. Use it to find out when potential buyers are most active on your Facebook or Google Plus pages, or what tweets get the most response and when.

Sprout Social also makes it easy to find influential social profiles with its Discovery and keyword search features.

The Facebook functionality isn’t as robust as using Facebook itself, but that’s ultimately for the best. You can promote your business-related content during the day without being overly distracted by your friend’s latest rant about politics or Facebook beating you up about boosting posts.

And if you need content ideas, Sprout Social allows you to connect Feedly RSS feeds for fast news and content access. Pretty simple stuff.

If you happen to work within a team, Sprout Social enables task assignments and admin control of different social profiles by separate individuals. That can be quite productive to divide and conquer, but that also means that when it comes to messaging and property features, everyone should be on the same page. It’s important you don’t post the same sort of content or post within seconds of one another.

The feature I like best is Sprout Social’s Chrome browser applet. If I come across some shareable content in a browser tab, I can send, schedule or queue a post in any of my connected networks without having to enter the software’s dashboard. It makes curating content very convenient and helps you stay timely. Big fan.

The close

If you’re serious about your social, give this tool a look. There’s also Hootsuite, which I used at one time, too. Compare the two.

Here’s the catch: It’s pretty expensive. The lowest plan is $59 month. Even though that offers connectivity of 10 profiles, most agents would be running only two or three. I suppose a couple of agents could split the cost to manage their respective profiles. That probably makes the most sense.

If you’re open to the cost and see value in a robust, versatile social media management platform, Sprout Social is a winner.

Do you use Sprout Social? What do you think? Leave a comment and let us know!

Do you have a product for our tech expert to review? Email Craig Rowe.

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