Since I’m on this extended social media rant, its only proper that I go in a little deeper and talk about the tricks of the trade that I use to get my social media on.
My introduction to social media started about five years ago, participating in online forums and beta testing groups for different applications.
Back in the day (five years ago was so last year) forums were the original online social networks.
Today, there are countless social media networks of varying popularity, size and utility.
As more and more brands start realizing the value of social networks to their overall brand presence, managing these various networks is a growing issue.
I belong to a Social Media Marketing group on Linkedin, which discusses social media issues regularly.
One of the longest running discussions is about which social media management tool group members use.
The responses run the gamut, as do the rationales justifying the use of this tool over that.
Many of the responses talk about Radian 6, and recently Sendible has crept into these discussions as well.
In fact, there is an abundance of social media management and monitoring tools to chose from (of varying degrees of utility, quality and price), but one has stolen my heart.
For those of you in the know, Hootsuite was one of the earliest free (well used-to-be-free, but I’ll get to that later) social media management platforms available.
That’s how they got me – first in the space AND free.
Hootsuite promised me the world: unlimited social media profiles, analytics, simple and easy to use interface, desktop dashboard.
And I used it all.
I used to boast (to anyone who would listen) that I managed 20 social media profiles effortlessly – and it was all because of Hootsuite.
For those of you who are asking, “WTF is Hootstuite?” shame on you.
But if you, like me, are in the know, you know WTF Hootsuite is: only the best-es social media management/monitoring tool in the free world (although, as I said earlier, it’s no longer free).
With Hootsuite, you can manage multiple Twitter accounts, Facebook profiles, Facebook pages, Linkedin, Ping.fm, WordPress, MySpace and Foursquare accounts.
From the Hootsuite dashboard, you can simultaneously manage and monitor multiple streams.
In addition to managing and monitoring multiple streams and profiles, you also have the capacity to generate comprehensive statistics using Google Analytics, Twitter and Facebook Insights.
Mind you, I’ve only really been freaking Hootsuite in the past few weeks because they’re about to start charging me, and I need to know that I’m going to get the right bang for my buck.
They’ve got a free 30 day trial, to take it for a test drive and see if its really the tool for you.
So if you’re interested in using a fairly inexpensive social media management and monitoring tool that won’t break the bank (it’s only $5/month for unlimited profiles and $15 for additional team members), then Hootsuite may just be the right tool for you.
Note: Hootsuite does not pay me to endorse their product (although I wish they would!)