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There are a lot of people that offer social media services, but what exactly that means to the person offering it seems to vary pretty wildly.

For some freelancers or agencies it will mean full-on, highly customized, and comprehensive campaigns to fully develop a brand’s presence online. Other times though, it seems to mean utilizing the auto-scheduling features of apps like HootSuite to quickly develop a bunch of bulk content scheduled out through the month.

You’ve probably seen folks doing the latter whether you realized it or not.

They are recognizable by the fact that they are often one man shows that claim to have a hundred clients from all over the US. Obviously the math behind that just doesn’t make sense unless they are relying on significant automation.

For HootSuite, that automation is as simple as telling it 3 characteristics of a target industry and waiting 25 seconds while it generates 10-15 posts from the web related to those things. Click schedule, and done.

Easy, but ineffective.

The problem with this kind of social media automation is threefold.

  1. It does nothing to differentiate the brand from competition because some of those folks are probably relying on the same automation, meaning that the content pool both are drawing from is the same.
  2. You can’t fake personality.
  3. If success on social media were as simple as automated posts, couldn’t a customer simply buy their own scheduling software?

Being successful on social media goes well beyond just making sure you post on a regular basis so pages look active. If posting feels like busy work to you, it will probably come across that way to readers, too.

A lot of times it seems business owners see it that way, so to them a big part of the value of hiring a social media manager is simply to outsource the effort because they don’t have the time. Lack of time is valid, but the real value in outsourcing it to someone with experience is in how intelligently the effort showcases their brand.

Think of the fluff you scroll right past when you’re on your own social channels. What impact did that have on you?

Your marketing deserves more than to become a shrug in somebody’s news feed.