Between services, meetings, sermon writing, and the countless other things that fill up your week, social media can feel like an extra time-consuming task that you just don’t quite have time for.
But, with more than half of the world’s population active on social media, we are in a digital age, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to deny the importance of churches having an online presence.
Rather than manually publishing social media posts or stories when you want them to go live, scheduling will save you time and enable you to be more consistent with posting on social media. Perhaps you could dedicate an hour per week to scheduling your church’s social media content for the week.
But where do you start? In this blog we’re going to have an in-depth look at Meta Business Suite, paying particular attention to its key features and how to get started with using the tool.
Meta Business Suite: The lowdown
Meta Business Suite is a completely free scheduling tool that allows you to schedule and manage your content on Facebook and Instagram. This content can include posts, stories and ads. The tool is available on both desktop and as an app.
Key features of Meta Business Suite:
- Completely free with no ‘bonus’ features which come at an extra cost – all you need is a Facebook page to get started
- Publish feed posts and stories on both Facebook and Instagram (without needing to switch between the two accounts)
- View when your audience is most engaged, and schedule your posts and stories for that time
- Save posts and stories as drafts
- Upload assets (e.g. graphics) to the media library
- Manage your inbox: read and reply to messages and comments from across Facebook, Messenger and Instagram
- Create automated responses for messages
- Track analytics: monitor how your posts are performing and learn more about your audiences
- Review all activity across Facebook and Instagram
- Calendar view to see clearly what’s coming up
How to get started:
The first things you need to do are create a Facebook page for your church and open up Meta Business Suite.
- Make sure that you have a Facebook page set up. If you don’t have a Facebook page yet, come along to our next Facebook pages webinar, or watch an on-demand recording.
- Click here to open Meta Business Suite in your browser, or download the app on your mobile phone (Android app, Apple app)
Once you’ve done that, check out the video below for an orientation of Meta Business Suite.
How to create and schedule posts:
Ready to schedule a post? Follow these simple steps.
1. From the Home screen on Meta Business Suite, click on the Content tab
2. Click Create post in the top right corner
You will then see these options:
3. Indicate whether you want the post to appear on Facebook, Instagram or both
4. Under Media, select a photo or video for the post
5. Under Post details, write a caption in the Text box
6. Preview your post on the right-hand side of your screen and make any adjustments
7. Next to Scheduling options, select one of the three options:
Publish now, then select publish to post immediately
Schedule, to select the date and time you would like your post to publish
Save as draft, to save and set to publish later
Once you get started, your Meta Business Suite Planner will populate with the posts and stories you schedule, giving you an overview of everything that you’ve got set to go out over Facebook and Instagram.
Social media scheduling top tips:
- Post frequently and consistently: this will help you to engage your community and increase your visibility. Perhaps you could start by posting once a week and gradually increase this to three times a week when you’re ready.
- Create content in batches: this will save you time in the long run! Perhaps you could create and schedule a week’s content in a dedicated hour or two at the start of the week
- Where appropriate, crosspost on your social media platforms, e.g. Instagram and Facebook
- Use the calendar view to organise your posts and see clearly what’s coming up
- Naomi Ensor, Digital Labs Officer