I'm a one-woman shop. Outside of client work, I still have to manage invoices, emails, social media, networking, etc. A few months ago, I decided I needed to automate or change something so I didn't have as much non-design work taking up my day.
I started by searching for a virtual assistant that maybe could help me. But, I didn't need Inbox help, or blog post help... I just wanted someone to help me schedule out social media. It was a little more than I wanted to spend, if we're being honest. I know I talk a lot about people needing to invest in their business with good design, but it was more than I wanted to spend for a few posts each day. (Sorry, VA's!)
Then, I found Edgar.
What is Edgar? From their website, "Edgar is a social media scheduling tool that builds a library of every update a user uploads, so they can share them again and again over time. The app pulls updates from that library to fill the user's queue. The user never runs out of things to post, and their updates get the chance to be seen by new people in their audience. This breaks the constant cycle of manually refilling an empty queue, and gives every update multiple chances to find an audience."
Here's a quick video to show you what Edgar looks like.
I signed up for the trial and ended up signing up just a few days later - I was hooked! I still post on social media outside of Edgar, but it's a huge relief to not have to fill my queues every week. Freelancers are often talking about automating systems and whatnot, and this is a great tool that has helped me do just that! (Update: They don't currently have the trial, but there is a 30-day money back guarantee!)
I've heard some freelancers talk about maybe the price is too steep for this service ($50/month), but it's much cheaper than hiring someone (sorry VA's!) at this stage in my business.
Here's how I use it:
A big part of my business is to be a resource, and provide valuable content to other freelancers and entrepreneurs. So, every blog that I post is either a tutorial or tips, or like this one – sharing an awesome tool!
So, my social media content is an extension of my blog. I've set up different categories within my Edgar account, My Blog Posts, Tips, Web Related (web design tips), and more that you can see below.
I run a Facebook group and a Twitter chat, so the days of the week categories, and the one named Twitter Chat. This is one feature of Edgar that I love - posting prompts into my Facebook groups that I run!
When you first start with Edgar, you'll create categories. These are like the filing folders you might have in your office – if you want to store your receipts in one place, you have to have a folder to put them in first. You can always add and delete categories later!
After you have your categories (or "folders"), you'll starting add posts to your library. You can choose which accounts (or pages) that you want to send these posts to, which category they fit in, and what you want the post to say. You can also add a photo to include with the post!
I have a lot of content that I send to both Facebook and Twitter, but sometimes I want to use a longer post, so I only send it to Facebook. Then, of course, I also have my Facebook group that I can post prompts in each week. We'll talk about scheduling these posts next.
But first – for my Twitter chat, I'll load up the questions and graphics each week, and click the "Send at specific time" button. I'll categorize these posts in the "Use Once" category so they don't go into my actual library of content, and only post during my chat.
Pssst: check out my e-book on creating beautiful, branded social media graphics!
After you've created all of your posts, now is when you can go in and schedule your posts. Most social media consultants recommend the 80/20 rule – meaning only 20% of your posts are self-promotion. I don't consider my blog posts as self-promo, only the posts in the "Promotional" category. Keep this in mind as you create your schedule. Here's a look at mine:
Now, when you create your schedule, you'll just click on a certain day/time, and choose which category to post. You can always change which category posts at which time, and add or delete time spots. I want to drive a lot of traffic to my blog, so you can see that I have several blocks for sending out my posts. (There is more schedule, going all the way to midnight, but it doesn't fit all in one screen.)
This is the key feature of Edgar: recycling your content.
All of the posts that you loaded into your library, will cycle through the different times you have in your schedule. If you look at my categories photo above, I have 80 blog posts in that particular category. In the schedule screenshot, you can see three of the times that blog posts get sent out. So, Edgar will send blog post 1, then 2, then 3, 4, 5 -- all the way to 80. Once it mosts #80, it will circle back and post #1, then 2, etc.
As I'm blogging each week, and adding each new post to my library, the cycle adjusts. Let's say that right now, Edgar is ready to post blog #52 tomorrow. If I go in tonight, and add a new blog post to my queue, Edgar will bump my new one in front of #52.
You can look at your queue for the next two weeks. If there's something that you don't want to post for some reason, there is also a "Shuffle" button where you can have Edgar mix up your current queue.
I know, you're probably wondering... so, is the price point of Edgar actually WORTH it? Did I see results? The below stats cover results from February–December 2015.
- 267 new likes on Facebook
- 843 new followers on Twitter
- 134 new email subscribers
- 48% of my clients found me on social media in all of 2015
Since almost all of my blog posts are evergreen (meaning, it's not time-sensitive, and the content can be read this year or next and still be helpful), using Edgar is incredible for getting eyes on those blog posts again and again.
There are no affiliate links within this post. I only share products/services that I absolutely LOVE. Edgar has done so much for my business, and I wanted to share it with you! If you need to offload something in your business, consider using Edgar for your social media scheduling.
What's the difference between Edgar and Buffer? See here!