Templates and tools can help you work smarter and save you time and help your efforts go further. Buffer’s Kevan Lee shared his best tools, tips and tricks for his blogging and social media strategy at our weekly Twitter chat, #Bufferchat.

Check out the curated Storify recap here!

time saving templates social media

What tools or apps do you use on a daily basis?

From Kevan:

  • Buffer to create and schedule social media posts. WordPress and Canva to create blogposts.
  • I’m always keen to try new things! SpruceApp has been a fun new one, and JustUnfollow has had some neat Twitter insights!
  • I’m a big fan of the Distraction-Free Editor inside WordPress, too!

Other great tools:

What formulas or templates save you the most time with blogging?

From Kevan:

            • Love @neilpatel‘s advice: Write your intro and conclusion first, then outline and write the middle!






        Other great insights:

            • “My templates in Canva help with images for each post. And keeps branding consistent.” @ravendelana



        • “We like approaching each post as a blank slate. We enjoy crowdsourcing topic ideas from our community.” @ChiDPI



        • “My formula is simple, make sure I have plenty of blog topics at all times. I use @evernote to keep track so I’m always ready” @mcartertweets





        • “An eye-grabbing content image/graphic + 500 written first, then edited words that interest followers = #blogsuccess@_katiewestbrook



What formulas or templates do you use in social media?

From Kevan:



        • I’ve tried Title Case headlines followed by URL, headline then URL then commentary, and even multi-line posts!




        Other great insights:

            • “For #socialmedia clients I sometimes create a Quote template in Canva and reuse it for other quotes – #Branding” @CathyWebSavvyPR



        • “I use images, [NEW], [new post] or [blog post] to tell people what they’re clicking on. I ask questions for engagement.” @EmilyaCarlton



        • “For every blog post: 1 headline tweet, 1 question tweet, 1 quote tweet, in a massive spreadsheet.” @bberg1010







What is a good balance of template use vs. not?

From Kevan:

            • I like to start with a template, learn what works, and iterate from there. The non-templates end up informing the templates!



        • For beginners and pros, lots of cool stuff to start with there, then grow and develop what works best for you!




        Other great insights:

            • “That is 100% up to you. Some posts lend themselves to templates. But the free flow of some is more powerful. Be Flexible.” @domgarrett



        • “Template depends on content. Can you use a template for all situations? No, posting should be fluid, evolving with you!” @instanttragedy



        • “I think it’s all about balance. Templates for efficiency but not at the cost of authenticity and being present.” @JayVig



        • “Templates can be great for starting out and consistency.” @KylaK



What’s the greatest productivity advice you’ve ever received?

From Kevan:

            • Focus on what helps you achieve your goals. Cut out the rest.



        • The 2-Minute Rule: If something can be done in 2 mins or less, do it now. 🙂


        Other great insights:

            • “Turn off notifications on your phone. All of them. Seriously :)” @cmrberry



        • “Best productivity advice: Something is better than nothing. Do something.” @YouTooCanBeGuru





        • “It’s not a work/life balance its called living… so focus on making everything you do the best it can possibly be!” @iSocialFanz



        • “it’s all about building momentum. So even small tasks at first help you build it.” @deathtostock



What social media/blogging pros do you follow for good tips and inspiration?

From Kevan:




        Other great insights:



        • “My fav bloggers are: @kevanlee @garyvee @nickcicero @IanCleary @memktgservices @danielnewmanUV @adhutchinson @briansolis” @isocialfanz



        • “@garyvee, @buffer, @copyblogger, @ThisIsSethsBlog to name a few” @BarbaraDiGangi










        Thank you to everyone who participated! Join Bufferchat each Wednesday on Twitter!    Image sources: Unsplash, Blurgrounds, The Noun Project

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Written by Nicole Miller

Community Champion at Buffer 🙂 When I’m not connecting with amazing community members, you can find me writing, reading or blogging about my urban homesteading adventures with 15 chickens, four ducks, two dogs and a horse.

  • Great recap, Nicole. I have new blogs and Twitter folks to follow + some new tools to try in 2015!

  • Thanks for the recap! I really need to check out IFTTT and I love the productivity advice.

  • Louisa

    London PR is a media relations agency working with a wide range of consumer and B2B clients from across the UK and beyond. We manage public relations and social media. See our website for more info!


  • Brocks

    A lot of new stuff to check, thank you!

  • Jitendra

    Hi Nicole,

    Really great advice of SMO you share with us.


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  • When you ask which social media/blogging pros do I follow for information and inspiration, it is an easy question to answer. Kevan Lee at Buffer is one of my all time favorites, but everyone at Buffer is top drawer!

  • Mary Jo

    Thank you for recommendations, they’re great help. Can’t wait foe more

  • Some tools I use, some new to me, great piece of info !

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  • Seray

    Thanks a lot Nicole! I’ve added most of them to my list.

    Since I am not quite good at Photoshop, I prefer free tools to create my own blog & social media images. They are real time savers for me!


  • such a great content and really informative