Stuck on Repeat: Why Automatic Reposting Is a Bad Idea

An often requested feature from Sked Social customers is the ability to automatically repetitively repost content. There’s one simple reason Sked won’t add this feature: it’s not good practice.

What some marketers would love to do is to load up a batch of posts into their scheduler of choice and have the system repost content according to a pre-defined schedule or frequency. The same thing(s), over and over and over again.

Certainly, there are some social media scheduling tools out there that will allow you to keep posting and reposting the exact same content ad infinitum. Keep adding posts to the bucket and, when it runs out, the system automatically churns through the same posts again. And again. And again.

Sounds like a dream for any marketer tired of writing and scheduling individual posts. Sounds like a nightmare for their poor followers.

If anything, it encourages bad habits that run counter to what social media marketing is supposed to be all about.

I’ve already written about the perils of relying too heavily on automation but this is a slightly different problem. When you know your bucket of posts will never, ever run out, you might quickly feel that turning up to post “live” is a lower priority.

The urgency to post for real, to avoid the account falling silent or to hit that ideal daily posting frequency, is just no longer there. Even if you have the best intentions of checking in on social more often, when work is busy it’s easy to think “later” when the machine has got your back.

Continuous reposting like this really can be set and forget – in the worst possible way. Sked is definitely all about making your life more efficient – but that doesn’t mean turning you into some kind of spambot.

Don’t get me wrong: there are benefits to scheduling your posts and reposting the same content more than once – in some cases.

For example, a Twitter feed can move so fast that sharing your latest article at different times over the course of a few days or weeks makes sense, particularly if you have an audience spread across different time zones. LinkedIn’s feed moves slower and is often far less busy, which is why my personal rule of thumb is to share the same link twice, at least a week apart.

Meanwhile, Facebook’s algorithm operates in such a way that users will often see posts they’ve missed without you necessarily reposting it multiple times, reducing the need to repost.

In fact, posting the same content with the same or similar wording and hashtags on Facebook can work against you. But, with the right approach, you can still benefit from posting more than once, as long as you craft your posts separately and don’t overdo it so that your shares begin to look … well, spammy.

As for Instagram, posting the same images over and over would quickly begin to look very odd indeed. It’s just not that kind of place.

Where reposting is appropriate, simply replicating the original post is not only lazy but also a massive missed opportunity. And when I see posts shared over and over that consist of the bare minimum – title, hashtag, URL, image – the impression I get is, “We couldn’t be bothered to add any value but we’re going to keep spamming you until you click.”

Instead, each time you reshare the same link or content, treat it as an excuse to appeal to different people.

Experiment with different hashtags to reach other communities. Highlight other key points or quotes from the article, such as a headline stat. If the content contains multiple images, switch them for each post. Or even spark off new discussions by asking a different question inspired by the content.

Stuck on Repeat: Why Automatic Reposting Is a Bad IdeaExample of content being reposted by Jonathan on Twitter

You may be resharing the same content (within reason), but the posts each add value or present the content in different ways.

That way, those who do happen to see you promote the same content twice won’t view it as reheated leftovers.

There is a time, place and reason for reposting content but not as a continuous spew of the same cookie cutter piece. Proceed with caution and with thoughtful posts as to not come off as “spammy.”

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