A few weeks ago, I highlighted some helpful technology available today to help you strategize, analyze relationships, add to your productivity and visualize the affects of social communications. I mentioned that it was important to be a Technology Tester, to take the time to research and test technology to have the right tools in your social media toolkit. The four resources in the post included: the Vocus Social Media Strategy App, Post Planner for Facebook, Asterisq Mention Map and Cloud.li.
I caught up with Julie Cros, founder of Post Planner, and was interested to learn how she married marketing and technology. With so many of us learning, testing and embracing technology, I asked Julie to share her story on how and why she decided to launch the Post Planner Facebook application.
Here’s my interview with Julie Cros:
Q1: How did you come up with the idea to create Post Planner?
Post Planner was born out of a personal need that evolved into a business one. I was going away for the weekend and wanted to share some useful information with my community while I was away. I knew I could use one of the social media dashboards to schedule my post, but thought it was a bit of a pain to download a dashboard to my desktop or log in to another website. I started looking for a Facebook app for planning posts, but couldn’t find anything easy to use.
So the app idea stayed in my mind for the next couple days before I thought of it as a business idea. Then I realized the potential and added value a comprehensive Facebook-located scheduling tool could have for brands and companies.
Q2: How does Post Planner help PR and marketing professionals? How is it different than other apps?
Post Planner is strictly Facebook focused, and has quickly become the must-have business app of many PR and marketing experts. It just makes their daily operations easier.
With Post Planner, PR Marketers can plan and strategize future wall posts in a matter of minutes. The app (which, again, is built directly into Facebook) lets them schedule posts easily, but also helps them raise brand awareness via our new White Label application. With the White Label app, businesses can replace the “via Post Planner” footer with “via Your Brand” and link the footer to any website they choose.
Post Planner also helps marketers and PR experts increase their page’s exposure by giving them access to our huge Status Ideas database, which offers over 3,000 prewritten statuses, each designed to help increase EdgeRank.
On Facebook, creating the most engaging and consistent content is key, and Post Planner helps you achieve that.
Post Planner is unique among apps in many ways! It’s directly integrated to Facebook making it easy and simple to use. It’s a smart and complete product design offering a full service package: schedule your posts, repeat them, find powerful status ideas, maximize your branding.
Q3: What are some best practices when it comes to the planning and development of content?
Easy: make sure you use Post Planner. 🙂
Customers want to feel important. They want to know you’re listening to them. They want you to provide valuable information. And they want exclusive incentives. But they don’t want to be bombarded with promotional offers or advertisements. TV does that already.
So I have two content tips:
1) Provide useful content: create a need that will get your community impatient to read your latest news, give them sexiness, and do not promote marketing messages over 20% of the time.
2) Be consistent: it doesn’t have to be everyday (in fact what works well with one community may not work with another one, and vice-versa) but it should at least be steady.
Q4: You mentioned you have a marketing background. What made you decide to marry marketing and technology to develop your social media tool?
With technology invading any marketer’s daily activities (think websites rather than brochures, smartphones instead of faxes, emailings vs print mailings, e-shops complementing stores, QR codes replacing a business’s ID, etc.), I started a love affair with Facebook and leveraged its incredible power in its early years. As marketers, we see and have many tools available, but that doesn’t mean they’re all requirements for doing business. My vision was to provide a simple way to anticipate conversations and make the lives of Facebook users easier, and the combo marketing-technology came as a natural evolution.
Q5: What advice can you give to other marketing and PR professionals who are interested in building a tool and launching it in the market?
Create a product that solves people’s problems!
Don’t go for the fanciest tool in the world. And don’t just create a copycat tool. Make sure you’re creating a product that cures the pain of customers and make their lives easier.
It doesn’t have to be designed for everyone, and in fact “a product that is designed for everyone barely reaches much of anyone” (Seth Godin). But it needs to be clever and it has to offer smart features.
When it comes to launching it in the market, make sure you define the relevant channels first, and then listen for feedback to make your tool even smarter and better adapted to your user’s needs. Listen, care and respond, so your customers feel important and can sense that you’re making their lives easier.
About Julie Cros … Co-Founder at Post Planner: www.postplanner.com Digital junkie, Social Media Big time, Life, Laughs, Love. Pro twitter: @PostPlanner – Personal: @LiveJulie.