What Is The Queue?
It allows you to reduce some of your decision-making process just to what content you want to share on your social networks, relieving you of the time it takes to hard-schedule it and decide when it should run. Find it, queue it, forget it.
Setting Up The Queue
The first thing you’ll need to do is configure the queue settings, which is done in the “Schedule Settings” section. The settings you choose here will affect your queue in regards to your scheduled posts, but not the posts you publish immediately.
For example, let’s say you set up the queue to publish between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m., and you set the “Queue Max Per Day” for three posts for a Twitter account. You schedule a post for 8:30 a.m. for the next day. The next day, at 10 a.m., you decide to add three posts to your queue. Only two of these queued posts will go out that day. The third post will go out the next day. This is because the queue takes into account your scheduled posts and makes sure that you don’t exceed your maximum settings, which was three in this case. However, you can post instantly throughout the day without affecting your queue at all. Your scheduled content can exceed the maximum settings without effect; it will always goe out when you schedule it.
Choosing Start And Stop Times
There are several theories (and software built on those theories) about when the best time to post to Twitter and Facebook is. Activity on each social network is different. You can choose to base your queue start and stop times based on such findings. Remember that these time settings are global (i.e. for all social accounts) and not adjusted per account.
You might find it more useful to set the start and stop time based on office hours, or whenever you are most likely to be at your computer, so that you can respond to conversation and feedback.
Choosing Queue Max Per Day
While the start and stop time is a global setting, each social account can have individualized post maximums. This means that you might want your Twitter account to have a maximum queue setting of five posts per day, but your Facebook account to only have three.
Choosing the setting that will work best for you might be based on different factors, such as how active your audience is, how available you are to respond to the resulting conversation, and even how large a window of time you’ve set. For example, if you set your queue to run for three hours but have your posts set for 10, that’s about three tweets per hour. Will your audience appreciate that high volume? Or will it seem like spam?
Get Started Using The Queue
Once you have your settings in place, using the queue is simple. In the publish window, you can choose to publish immediately, schedule (in which case you’ll be asked for date and time), or queue. Clicking on the queue button is all it takes. It is immediately added with no additional effort from you.
The queue works on a first-in-first-out basis. What you put in yesterday that didn’t get published will be published before what you added today. Like scheduled items, queued items can be edited or deleted by accessing the “Schedule” pane and finding the post in question.
Tips For Using The Queue
The difference between using the queue as a tool, and not as a crutch, comes down to a few simple concepts.
- Know your audience and networks. Your settings should reflect this understanding so that you don’t become spammy.
- The queue is not automation. You are still deciding what to put in it, and the time window it will appear. It still has your personality and voice attached to it.
- The queue works as a filler. Use scheduling for time-sensitive posts, and use the queue to fill in the cracks. When you’re not active, the queue kicks in and helps you.
The queue is a great tool to help you maintain a social media presence at all times. The queue doesn’t take the place of being human, it just helps you be human. You still need to respond to the conversations; it is not a replacement for authentic conversations.