You may have read the many recent articles that social media management tools like Hoootsuite and Buffer are dead. The claim that scheduled posts aren’t getting the reach that they used too and that readers know that its scheduled and aren’t interested. This is the second round of management tools death talk. The first round was around 2012-2013.

I talked about this with my colleagues. For me a red flag went up. Not that it isn’t possible but how would the average Facebook reader know. They look at the pictures and maybe the first line. They don’t care that it says #navigatoraimee aimee mcwhorter compton or even know what that means.

I did some investigation on the pages I manage to see if engagement and visibility is actually down when posts come from Hootsuite. I compared it with Facebook scheduling, realtime posting and included automatic posting from Mailchimp and WordPress.

What mattered most? Time of day and not where it came from. The sweet spots for most of my clients this past week was between 8-10 am and 7-9 pm.

There was one exception – a nonprofit garden page. This is the perfect example of why it’s critical to know your audience. Looking at the Insights for this page, I can see the average fan is between the ages of 55 – 64. The sweet spot to post for this page is between 2-5 pm.

The only posts with a reach in the single digits-
*made 2 posts without a picture. One with hashtags one without.
*made 2 posts, same time of day from the same site but different blogs. They both had the same picture (government funded site) the second post was in the single digits.

I also compared posting multiple times a day to multiple times a month. The more posts the higher the reach over all. Now that doesn’t mean go crazy and post 20 times a day on Facebook. Every post isn’t a winner but overall higher with the exception again of the nonprofit garden page. It’s because their fans are actually visiting the page. I do manage one page that’s an anomaly but that’s a story for another day.

For me at this time I’m not seeing lower visibility from Hootsuite posts so I asked a friend that uses Buffer what he’s noticed. He hasn’t noticed a change yet either. He recommended this blog from Buffer on the subject.

We decided it’s something we’ll continue to watch, not that we wouldn’t. We’ll also continue to use all of our resources and not rely on Hootsuite or Buffer for everything. Please share your experiences in the comments.

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