I’m a great fan of Buffer. It is a simple and free* tool that lets you schedule tweets and Facebook updates for pages. It also covers several other social networks, such as LinkedIn.
Most importantly, it automatically times your postings for slots when they are likely to get the most response. That is really handy when you want a message to be seen or acted on, but it isn’t too time sensitive.
You can manually schedule messages with many other tools. But, Buffer takes the extra step of letting you set up a series of prime time slots. It then automatically puts each message you schedule into the next one of those slots which is free.
(A little tip – make sure you don’t have a slot near 11am, as that’s the time when minutes silence are held in the UK. Avoiding that time means you won’t risk being caught out at some point by a scheduled message appearing inappropriately around the time of a moment of reflection and silence.)
All in all, this tool is very nifty, especially as it means that – for example – you can trawl through handy Twitter lists or some of your favourite Twitter accounts for various messages to retweet and then use Buffer to spread out your retweets over an effective time range. That’s much more effective than appearing all at once in a concentrated deluge as you hit the normal retweet option on each in turn.
I’ve found the service very reliable. There have been occasional interruptions when lining up a message. But it has never failed to send one. Nor has Buffer ever made a mess of sending one more than once. They have also been very responsive to questions I have sent their way.
* There’s also a paid-for version but the scope for the free version is pretty generous.