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Managing Social Media During Holidays #HowTo

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The greatest gift a community manager can wish for during the holiday season is actually having “time off.” While it’s a lofty wish for a job that’s always on, there are steps you can take to set you and your team up for as much cheer-filled free time as possible.
Content Calendar
Prepare a plan that shows what content is to be shared daily via each social media channel. Ideally you should have this year round, but it helps to get really granular while away. The less time you have to spend thinking up content while out of the office the better.
Go a step further and print this calendar out. Sure, it’s on your computer, but you’re not likely to be at a computer while trying to spend time with family and friends. Having a print out will allow you to quickly refer to it when needed, and also stay on top of posting times and potential high-volume comment periods.
A few notes about content:
Hours
If you manage a client with special holiday hours, post this information before someone asks for it. You’ll be doing yourself and your community a favor.
Messaging
Take a deep breath and repeat after me: IT’S OKAY TO POST NOTHING ABOUT A HOLIDAY. Really, it is. The brand you manage does not have to comment on everything. That being said, most brands do like to say *something*. Before you say that something, make sure it is on point. Maybe your client does not want you to say “Christmas.” Maybe they really do.
Passwords
Make sure you have a list of ALL social logins before you leave the office. Believe me, someone’s going to make an epic rant on that blog Chrome conveniently forgets the login for. A simple list of passwords can save you some headaches. To save yourself from major headaches, make the list a little cryptic. Instead of @INSIDECURRENT TWITTER ACCOUNT PASSWORD ****** label it in terms only you’d understand, ex. “C:T:****”
Scheduling
Schedule your Tweets and Facebook posts. Unfortunately, Instagram posts have to be done on the spot and Pinterest pins have to be pinned in the moment. When you have to post on social networks without a scheduling feature, it’s helpful to set reminders on your phone. Go a step further and drop the content into the reminder so all you will have to do is cut and paste. This will also reduce the likelihood for typos.
Monitoring
Many consumers spend extra time on social networks during the holidays. This is a crucial point to keep in mind and quite frankly something you just have to accept. If you truly want holidays off maybe a role in social media is not for you.
Of course, brand social chatter can vary wildly by the nature of a business. You can probably make a good estimate of this beforehand. In our department, for example, we know which of our clients are likely to have lots of chatter and which will probably not receive so much as a mention. Regardless, we know this and prepare ourselves for it.
Responding
If you have multiple team members, you can divide up the monitoring by day or enact a “whoever sees it first” policy. Note: this only works if it doesn’t become too one sided, but hopefully you can trust your team with this one.
Explain Yourself
If you’re going to be monitoring while around family and friends, make sure to communicate that you may have to step away for a moment or you may be looking at your phone every now and again. I’ve since figured out that many assume because it’s Christmas Day or (WHATEVER) holiday, they assume you are “off.” Politely explaining the situation beforehand can help alleviate the pain of disgruntled relatives who assume you’re playing Candy Crush rather than chatting with them about the latest family gossip.
Enjoy the Merry Merry
Remember, trolls will be trolls. Don’t let them be the Grinch That Stole Christmas. If you encounter bad seeds simply approach them like the rockstar you are then quickly get back to drinking that Eggnog. Finding clarity in the offline moments will do nothing but set you up for mental success in the new year.
Have a great one, y’all.

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