Today’s tragic shooting at an Aurora, Colorado midnight premiere of “Dark Knight Rises” shows how pre-scheduling and/or outsourcing social media posts can have negative consequences. Below is a screen shot of a national business who had a very ill-timed, pre-scheduled Facebook post:
Now, we believe that they definitely made the right call in the way they addressed the situation, up-front and honestly. BUT, the only way to avoid something like this (which can really spin out of control in a hurry) is to post LIVE. This is especially true when you link up your social media accounts together (ie. Facebook auto-posts to Twitter, which auto-posts to your LinkedIn account). Then you have a problem to solve on all 3 platforms (see below).
Here at Cosmetic Social Media, we prefer to post live, and from within the platform.* This means that when we make a Facebook post, we post live and while signed into Facebook (instead of using a 3rd party platform such as Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, etc.). Prior to this past month, Facebook did not have a way to pre-schedule your posts from within their platform. You can do this now using the little clock icon (see graphic below).
All this being said, there are times when pre-scheduling is a very handy tool. You might be traveling or giving a lecture and a pre-planned post can put activity on your page where there would otherwise be none. Just remember, if you do decide to pre-schedule a post, make it something benign such as a lovely quote about beauty or a “Happy Patient Quote of the Day“, so you don’t end up with a PR disaster on your hands.
*Note: We have been known to schedule a post here and there, but we do try to make it a rare exception, not the rule. 😉