The investment required to participate in a meaningful way in social media is significant. Every day we read blogs, follow people and brands we trust on Twitter, Linkedin, Google Plus, and Facebook, and conduct a number of research tasks. We then decide what we want to share and what we don’t.

For some, the next step involves writing hundreds or thousands of words around an idea that was sparked while processing all that content for personal or corporate blog sites. Finally, another person takes all that content and turns it into content papers, eBooks, trade books, slide decks, etc.

That sounds like a lot of work, and it is. If you put this in the context of the Enterprise, you’re talking about the time and energy of a team of people, too.

That’s why you should stop wasting your social content.

You’ve spent too much time, too much energy, and too much creativity on Twitter, Facebook, blogs, etc. not to harness the potential of all of that raw material. The ability to create a completely searchable database filled with content you’ve already curated, collected, created commentary around is more than a pipe dream; it's reality.

One of the things I think, stress, and worry about is how to extend the life of all the content I am responsible for producing and managing. On average, I am responsible for about 10,000 words per week of content development. That’s a lot of content shared across a variety of channels. If I don’t do anything but use it once, it is an incredible waste of perfectly good material.

The more uses I can get out of the same content, the lower my “cost” is to develop that content. That’s why it makes sense to me to auto-archive the content I’m creating in a way that can be quickly logged for future use. If I do this consistently, I will create a powerful, relevant, and specific database that I can use as often as needed for a presentations, reports, blog posts, books, etc.

The truth is archiving your social content is easier than you might think. And it can happen automatically.

It’s all begins with a service called IFTTT (www.ifttt.com). This is a FREE service that allows anyone to automate so many repetitive tasks that I can’t image how I would get through my day without it.

IFTTT stands for “If This, Then That.” No need to be intimidated by this service even if you are a novice when it comes to technology. If you’re really nervous, just follow the icons that are familiar to you.

Let me walk you through the set up of one recipe. I promise that if you’ll hang in there, you’ll fall in love with this service, too.

Example Recipe Set Up: Auto-archive Twitter content to Google Drive 

Step One: You first have to identify the “If” part of the equation. You do that by activating and choosing the Twitter channel.

You’ll have a few options. I chose the option to archive any new tweet.

Step Two: Your next step is to decide where you’ll house your archived content. That's the "Then" part of the equation.

Again, you’ll have a few options presented to you. I decided to use Google Drive catalog each new tweet in a new row of a single spreadsheet. It’s just as easily searched as a document. Once the number of rows exceeds the maximum allowed by Google, it will simply create a new spreadsheet.

Step Three: Click OK and turn the recipe on.

That’s it! I told you it was easy.

You can repeat these steps for all your social channels and even blogs. Just imagine how much content you’ll amass in a very short period of time. Think about how much you’ll capture over the next six, nine, and 12 months!

Are you letting your social content go to waste, or are you using it to your advantage to build a database of content for future reference?

Image Credit: Shutterstock

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