Tuesday, August 9, 2011

15 Services to Manage Your Social Media Activity

15 Services to Manage Your Social Media Activity


Matt Ferner provides a great list in Practical eCommerce:
15 Services to Manage Your Social Media Activity | Practical eCommerce



Social media can help ecommerce businesses. And although social media sites — Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube — are cost-free, they are not time-free. In fact, managing just a single social network business page can be a full-time job, not to mention managing three or four on multiple incompatible platforms — which is what many businesses try to do. Enter social-media-management software, applications that help your business manage multiple social network accounts simultaneously in one spot. They (a) provide a secure place to house your multiple passwords and usernames, (b) allow simultaneous posting across platforms, and (c) schedule and even automatically post to the platforms, if needed."

This list in not all inclusive, but it gives a great starting point. I have tried many tools but some are too "noisy" and some too "nosey".


Matt deserves applause for his noisy/nosey bottom line. 



In different work areas I have screens ranging from 10 to 23 inches including a dual-17" display setup. Some of the interfaces, like Tweetdeck, deserve as much display space as you can afford. But, I still found myself hiding columns and trying to clean up the clutter. 


You will need to test drive several to find one that works with your style. 


Simplification



LastPass is a great tool to manage passwords for all of my applications - not just social media apps. LastPass can run on mobile devices ($12 annual subscription), which reduces the headaches of memorizing, jotting, and potentially losing passwords. It is simply a better tool for that specific job. 


Twitter is for short-lived, volatile information, email works for direct content, and Blogger for long format writing and more "durable" content.  I work directly in their interfaces, and have a small collection of supporting tools: Windows Live Writer, the "Blog This!" Google Chrome extension, the Microsoft Snipping Tool, and a few others. 


I have roughed out this scale showing which tool is best for a particular message size. Notice that "sites" like Facebook and LinkedIn are not on the scale. I see sites as focal points, aggregation points and outlets. As a Blog curates a collection of articles on a single topic, a page will be created as a navigational aid (menu) which will look create a website style architecture. 


Does the size model work?



If you are building a social media strategy you have to have your own process model. Methods, tools, frequency, content, tie-in strategy, traffic drivers, destinations, and over-arching goals all deserve consideration. This type of planning, and the cost (mostly in the form of time demands and priorities) to execute a good plan tends to be a high-hurdle for small business owners. 


Are you willing to share?



Xolo