Facebook rolled out some new changes the other day, including stronger initiatives for advertising through promoted posts, new admin “roles” for Pages, and post scheduling.
In the past, we’ve always discouraged people against scheduling their Facebook content ahead of time. Facebook did not have a native option to schedule posts, so people used third-party syndicator programs like HootSuite or TweetDeck to accomplish such tasks. The problem was that Facebook penalizes posts that come through third-party apps. Meaning, if you were to post through a program like HootSuite, your content would have less visibility than it would if you were to directly post from Facebook.
So now that Facebook has embraced scheduling posts, many are rejoicing. However, I’m still wary. Why?
Your Facebook page (or any other social media account) is not a self-sustaining entity. Scheduling posts means that you probably aren’t going to check up on your Facebook page later, which could be dangerous because you could be missing out on some very important conversation. Your fans could comment or “like” your post, or someone might ask you a question, but you are nowhere to be found. How bad would that look on your behalf? Another reason why I still feel apprehensive about scheduling posts is because you never know what kind of content is relevant each day; Crafting content that is relevant to what’s going on with the rest of the world shows that you are in the mix, that you have strategy, which sets you apart from other people who just post random articles or links.
Scheduling certain posts ahead of time—like announcements or time-sensitive news about you or your company—can be very useful. But in the meantime, I’ll be cautious about scheduling my posts. That, and we all know that new Facebook features are notoriously buggy.