Buffer the App — Should be Part of your Publicity Machine

Your website, or blog, has so much poten­tial, it is ready and avail­able 24 hours a day, each and every day, and people are using the web all the time, even at times when we person­ally cannot be present. It would be nice to be able to post a Tweet at 4 a.m. when people in anoth­er part of the world are start­ing their workday, or at midnight as anoth­er part of the world signs into Facebook. This is why you need Buffer.

 

Enter Buffer

Buffer LogoThere are a wealth of free applic­a­tions avail­able today, few provide the writer with so much publi­city assist­ance than the Buffer App. I have been using Buffer for many years and you can sign up here. You will need to download the Buffer add-on for your browser in order to make it function.

      The browser exten­sion enables its users access to the power of Buffer, it is the tool that allows you to add posts to your buffer for Twitter, Facebook and other social networks, build­ing a queue of future posts, spread out over the next few days. This ensures you never overwhelm your follow­ers with your social activ­ity. You wish to share something, simply Buffer it, then in a few hours your social post will be seen by all.

      Add Buffer to your browser by using the Add-ons facil­ity, search for Buffer and get to the install­a­tion page, shown here (this example is for the Firefox browser):

buffer-firefox-add-on

Setting up Your Buffer Account

Once you have installed buffer you will need to register an account at buffer​.com.  You should create a free account where you can post to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram — this will also allow you to post to Google Plus pages. If you have multiple profiles on these sites that you wish to use then you will need to purchase the upgrade.

      As a part of the process of setting up your account you should add all of your social networks and define the times at which each of your posts will appear, you can tweak these over time, but you do need a start point set.

 

How to use Buffer

The Buffer icon will appear on your browser’s tool-bar once the add-in has been installed. If there is any website you wish to post to your queue in order to keep your social team informed you do so with a click. Simply use the button shown here:

buffer-icon-in-browser

Once clicked the Composer screen will appear:

buffering-a-page

 

Buffering Pages

Buffer’s composer screen will allow you to select a picture to enhance your social post:

buffer-composer-select-a-picture

The Internet is largely visual in nature and it is a good idea to include a picture with your post.

      By default the pictures from the post are included in Buffer’s composer screen. Selecting one of these, partic­u­larly the featured image, will reinforce the visib­il­ity of the work you are trying to publi­cise. Another option is to use Buffer’s Pablo page, that will allow you to add an image and a quote to your post.

 

Schedule Through Buffer

Scheduling is sometimes a better option than the default buffer­ing times, ensur­ing you post at a precise point.

buffer-schedule-post

This gives you the flexib­il­ity to plan social posts ahead of time. There is a confer­ence start­ing at 9 a.m., tomor­row, in India and you would like to post something that will be relev­ant to attendees. Provided you can convert it to a time in your local time zone. The sched­ule is an import­ant tool.

      Another feature is called Power Schedule, which allows you to post in multiple places at differ­ent times: now; in 8 hours; in 1 day; in 7 days; or at anoth­er time you may define.

 

Monitoring your Posts

Once you have an account you can monit­or progress of your posts on the Buffer website:

buffer-twitter-queue

Here you can see each of your queues individu­ally, you can also see to some extent how your posts have performed, although I believe Buffer is weak in this area as I have tracked social postings showing more likes and shares than are repor­ted through buffer.

 

Schedule & Other Things

The Schedule Tab allows you to set the times at which items are posted from the queue. I post five times a day from Twitter, twice from LinkedIn and Facebook. This is one of those things that should be synced to the times when your social sites are most active — there are apps that will allow you to discov­er what is the best time of day, if your really wish to take a scientif­ic approach.

      Upgrading costs $102 per year and will allow 100 items in each queue, more social profiles, a social media calen­dar to manage all your social accounts “at-a-glance,” manage Pinterest involve­ment. It is the ability to add 100 items to the queue that attracts me, but so far I have retained the stand­ard member­ship.

 

Limits?

There are limits to most software applic­a­tions, includ­ing buffer, such as the limited number of social connec­tions, unless you upgrade your account. Additionally Buffer doesn’t allow pictures larger than 3 Mb to be posted.

 

 

 

Buy Peter B. Giblett a coffee to thank him for showing you the power of Buffer. The featured image is from a royalty free public domain image collec­tions. All other images are by Peter B. Giblett and show practic­al examples of using Buffer.

 

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1 Comment

  1. Hi Peter. Great post about Buffer. I have been using Buffer for sever­al months now and I really enjoy the intuit­ive­ness of it. I find that the layout is much more simpli­fied and easier to use than Hootsuite. I also love the analyt­ics. It helps me to determ­ine which types of posts to post in the future based on the amount of likes and retweets I get on previ­ous posts.

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