Introducing Buffer for iOS 7: The Easiest Way to Manage Social Media On The Go

launch-graphic-largeSocial media sharing doesn’t just happen at a desk. It happens in the car, on the train, during a holiday – anywhere and everywhere. At Buffer, our goal is to provide you with the easiest possible way to share to your social accounts – even on-the-go.

That’s why today we’re ecstatic to show you a project that’s been five months in the making here at Buffer: the completely redesigned Buffer app for iOS 7.

Complete details on all the app’s upgrades are below – or if you just can’t wait, download it right away for free from the App Store.

What’s new in version 3.0 of the Buffer iPhone app

  • New “Re-Buffer” button allows you to re-post key content
  • Support for Facebook Groups (in addition to Profiles & Pages)
  • New “share next” button
  • Team management: Invite and edit team members from anywhere
  • Deeper analytics: Know how your content performs, anywhere
  • Content suggestions: Keep your social media stream full
  • Advanced customization for your Buffer editor
  • Background updating to keep your queue total up to date
  • Revamped to boost performance
  • New design for iOS 7

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A Scientific Guide to Hashtags: How Many, Which Ones, and Where to Use Them

hashtagHave you ever found yourself explaining hashtags to someone whose only connection with the word is as a telephone button?

Internet language has evolved considerably over the past few years as social media has taken off. Hashtags are a huge part of this evolution. What once was a telephone button is now a social media phenomenon.  No wonder people are curious.

When they ask, I tell them that hashtags are a pound sign immediately followed by a keyword. They’re used for categorization on social media. Yes, they can be annoying if overused. And yes, I’ve seen the hashtag video of Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake.

Hashtags also have the potential to be truly valuable. The stats and info below make a pretty clear case that we should be understanding, using, and appreciating hashtags.
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The Social Media Frequency Guide: How Often to Post to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn And More

frequencySubway has this sandwich with Fritos on it. I know this because their commercials play constantly on my TV and computer such that I nearly have the ads memorized.

Every time their commercial airs, Subway is flirting with the fine art of frequency. How often is too often to share with your audience?

Social media marketers face the same dilemma. We want to connect with followers without driving them away. We aim for the perfect balance of sharing and listening. I end up guessing a lot, trying and testing new variations on how often I should post.

If guessing is required for finding the optimal frequency, then at least we can be making educated guesses. I was happy to find some research on the ideal amount to post each day. Let the testing begin.

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The Ultimate Guide to Repurposing Content: 12 Ways to Extend the Life of Every Article You Write

Repurpose - dollar bill origamiDo you have a “Hall of Fame” for your best pieces of content?

I can recite a list of top content for the Buffer blog as quickly as I could recite the Pledge of Allegiance. We have Belle’s post about 10 simple ways to be happier, Leo’s post about why Facebook is blue, Courtney’s post about emotion in marketing and my Twitter tips for beginners. Our archives have a lot of helpful, popular content. It’d be a shame to just let them sit there!

That’s why repurposing content is such an exciting idea. You can breathe new life into old content and continue to gain value from your “Hall of Fame” posts. With repurposing, you already have a head start on the creation process—and the best parts of your blog don’t need to be kept in the history books.

Benefits of repurposing content

Time is a precious Internet resource, which is why one huge benefit—maybe the hugest—of repurposing content is the time it can save you in the content creation process. Continue reading…

The 7-Day Plan for Improving Your Marketing Metrics Week Over Week

weekly calendarBuffer runs seven days at a time. Many of our improvements, metrics, experiments, and tasks fit into one-week slices, which helps us to move quickly on new ideas and to revisit our results right away. Instead of it being early April around here, it’s just Week 14.

This weekly perspective has some big advantages across all our departments, including marketing. Reviewing and improving our marketing metrics week over week, for the blog and our social media accounts, lets us quickly experiment, test, and analyze where to best invest our time and effort.

I’d love to share some of our favorite ways to view metrics week over week, as well as some ideas on how to improve key stats and keep things on pace for monthly goals and benchmarks.

(As far as monthly goals go, we have those, too. You can read our latest monthly reports at our Open blog.)

Weekly reports, right in your email

The weekly emphasis on analytics is made much easier when these reports come hand-delivered to your inbox every seven days. Thankfully, many services now send weekly digests of your activity and performance, often with a comparison to performance form the week before.

Here are a few of our favorites. (We’re a little biased with the first!)

Social media overview—Buffer’s weekly digest email

Every Monday, Buffer sends out an email digest, covering your best content from the week before as well as key data on all your connected accounts with week-over-week comparisons. (Buffer user? See yours here.)
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The Key Ingredient of Buffer’s Most Shared Content, According to Research

pandaWe analyzed over 10 million posts sent via Buffer, looking for a common theme among the most shared content. Our findings surprised us as much as they might surprise you. The clear winner: pandas.

Panda content—photos, GIFs, and stories—made up nearly 18 percent of the top 500 posts sent through Buffer. These posts received an average of three times more clicks and 10 times more retweets than content without pandas, and the gap between panda content and the next-highest viral ingredient, monkeys wearing people clothes, was substantial. Pandas won, hands down.

  • Pandas – 18 percent of the top 500 posts
  • Monkeys wearing people clothes – 3 percent
  • Cats – 2.5 percent
  • Corgis – 2 percent
  • Honey Boo Boo – 1 percent

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How I Cut My Writing Time From 2 Days to 4 Hours

writingAs I was brainstorming ideas for my last post on the Buffer blog, I started reflecting on what I’ve personally learned during my time at Buffer.

My writing process is considerably different today than it was when I joined Buffer nine months ago, so hopefully you can find some nuggets in the mistakes I’ve made and the lessons I’ve learned that might help you as well.

Slow beginnings

When I first joined Buffer, Leo had been running the Buffer blog pretty much on his own: he wrote or sourced the content, published it and promoted it all. Leo and I approached blogging from almost exact opposite ends of the spectrum; Leo is great at getting something up quickly and tweaking it to fit, whereas I was prone to spend a long time on my “first draft,” which was more like a fourth draft by the time I eventually sent it over for Leo to look at. Continue reading…

The Ideal Length of Everything Online, Backed by Research

ruler and threadEvery so often when I’m tweeting or emailing, I’ll think: Should I really be writing so much?

I tend to get carried away. And for the times that I do, it sure would be nice to know if all this extra typing is hurting or helping my cause. I want to stand out on social media, but I want to do it in the right way.

Curious, I dug around and found some answers for the ideal lengths of tweets and titles and everything in between. Many of these could have been answered with “it depends,” but where’s the fun in that? Solid research exists to show the value of writing, tweeting, and posting at certain lengths. We can learn a lot from scientific social media guidelines like these. Here’s the best of what I found.

The ideal length of a tweet is 100 characters

Whom should you trust when it comes to advice on the ideal length of a tweet? How about Twitter itself?
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Marketing Personas: The Complete Beginner’s Guide

bucketsI am writing this post to Dan, Mary, Steven, and Rachel—one of whom is likely you.

You see, Dan, Mary, Steven, and Rachel are personas, created with a combination of raw data and educated guesses, representing slices of this blog’s readership. Dan could be you, and Mary could be your coworker. What these sketches provide is a touchstone for creating content: When I can put a name and a background to the people reading what I write, I can hopefully meet their needs even better.

The same holds for marketing and sales. Building personas for your core audience can help improve the way you solve problems for your customers. The process of creating personas is well worth the time. Here is a blueprint and beginner’s guide to getting started.

The basic marketing persona template

I love this description of a marketing persona from the team at Krux:

With personas, businesses can be more strategic in catering to each audience, internalize the customer that they are trying to attract, and relate to them as human beings.

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The Social Media Automation Strategy Every Marketer Needs

ConversationWhen I was in elementary school, my wardrobe was fully automated. I had a certain pair of sweatpants for Mondays, jeans for Tuesdays, Zubaz for Wednesdays, and so on. It was quite the system for a fourth-grader!

Automation has been a big part of my life ever since. I love to find helpful ways to work smarter—anything to shave an extra few minutes off my day. Automation, when done right, scratches this itch perfectly.

The same holds for automation of one’s social media marketing. There are huge efficiencies to unlock here, but at the same time, there remains one big question: “How do you automate your social media presence and stay in the conversation with your audience?”

Curious for myself, I researched and delved into this question of automation and came up with some intriguing answers. Based on that, here’s a strategy to achieve social media automation done right—both efficient and engaged. Continue reading…