Buffer app successfully streamlines social media performance

One of the key elements of productivity is bundling up small jobs, such as checking and responding to emails, and doing them all at once. This allows you to focus on the task, complete it, then move on to something else.

It’s well documented that switching between different tasks is one of the big time wasters that can really add up throughout the day.

This makes the app Buffer handy for those who use social media to promote their businesses and engage with their communities. It allows you to spend a chunk of time coming up with posts for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest, then scheduling them for those moments when they are most likely to be seen.

First launched in 2010, with a few upgrades along the way – in the early days it only linked to Twitter – the app helps users decide what times are optimal for them to post by analysing the data flows on the network they are using. It also allows you to override their recommendations and post immediately, or whenever you want. And it comes with a neat new feature called Pablo, where users can upload images, change their shape and paste text over them in a variety of styles.

As of last month, it’s now also possible to share videos by dropping them straight into the Buffer composer window and scheduling when you want to share them, an upgrade to the app’s previous focus on text or images.

To your Twitter, Facebook and Google+ followers, any videos scheduled in advance will appear as if you had just dropped it straight into the app, and on LinkedIn and Pinterest it comes up as a link to Buffer’s own video player.

There is one drawback – Buffer is not yet connected to some of the big platforms such as Instagram.

But Buffer has one specific job, and it does it well, with a simple dashboard that’s much easier to use than Twitter’s own interface. And by keeping you from opening up Facebook, Twitter and the like throughout the day, it will stop you from going down a rabbit hole of clicking on other links, and wasting valuable productive time.

q&a what’s a good time to tweet?

Jessica Holland offers more insights into the usefulness of Buffer:

What are the best times to post to social media?

According to Buffer’s blog, which assesses millions of posts, early morning is the best time for tweets to be read. However, tweets are more likely to be favourited and retweeted in the evening, and they are competing against the highest volume of tweets at lunchtime. Facebook engagement rates are higher on Thursdays and Fridays, and lowest by far on Saturdays.

How do I access Buffer?

It’s available as a mobile app for both Apple and Android, and it’s accessible via the web at buffer.com. An extension for Chrome, Firefox and Safari also allows you to share articles with one click on an image.

Is all this free?

The free version of the app allows you to connect one profile for each social media platform and store about 10 posts for each account at any given time. For US$10 a month, the “Awesome” upgrade will get you up to 10 social accounts for each platform (useful if you have a personal and a business Twitter account, for example), up to 100 posts stored for advance sharing, a posting schedule that varies from day to day, and 15 RSS feeds per connected profile.

What about businesses?

Buffer for Business starts at a fee of $50 a month, and allows users to work with your team members, connect to even more profiles, schedule even more posts in advance, and analyse the data generated by your followers in a greater depth.


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