That may be simplifying things a little, but it’s not too far fetched.
As for me, I fall somewhere in between the extremes – and I’m betting I’m not alone. Sometimes we need some tools to help us manage all our social networks. I understand that using some tools is considered obnoxious behavior by some people. But it’s a free Internet. You make your choices and live with them.
So if you think you can do this responsibly, here are seven social media management software tools to automate your updating and following:
This website offers many free and premium services to help you manage your Twitter account. And by manage, I mean you can schedule tweets, send automatic messages to those who follow you and follow all your followers automatically (Which I’m sure can cause a rip in the space-time continuum) for free. The full list of features will take a couple minutes to read.
Sending canned direct messages to welcome new followers is a bit controversial. To many, it’s Spam. Plain and simple. Others don’t mind and appreciate the contact. Those who do employ it swear by it. They say it helps them achieve high numbers of followers. The same goes for automatically following those who follow you.
My favorite though is the e-mail that rounds up all the tweets that manage any of my Twitter handles. Yes, it’s an exercise in ego gratification. I don’t care. I like it.
Like SocialOomph, Hootsuite will automate your tweets. But it’s most useful feature is how it juggles multiple social media accounts. Not only can you create a dashboard that gives lets you monitor your Twitter accounts, but you can add your Facebook (this includes Facebook pages), LinkedIn, Ping.fm, WordPress blog, MySpace and FourSquare accounts. This is so integrated that you can write one update that goes to any and all of those social media timelines/pages.
I don’t want to do that, but I do use it to monitor and update accounts one at a time. It saves me time to round up all my social media activity onto one page.
One of the best ways to get people to read your blog is to send updates to your social networks when you write a new entry. But some people are lucky to get the blog post written. Then they have to write a tweet? Never fear. TwitterFeed comes to the rescue by monitoring your RSS feed and updating your Twitter and Facebook accounts when you update your blog. It’s not pretty but it gets the job done.
I do use this to update @CarlNataleRSS with all the feeds from various blogs I update. Basically, I made this account for my mother who doesn’t know about RSS but wants to keep track of what I write. So it doesn’t hurt my feelings that the account only has three followers.
This is the granddaddy of updating every social media account in the world. One stop for all your accounts. And it will accept your SMS texts and e-mails for updating.
To be honest, I’m not that interesting that I would need this.
TweetBeep rather modestly only sends you an e-mail when you – or keywords of your choosing – are mentioned on Twitter. So it’s like Google alerts. It’s great for reputation monitoring, keeping track of what people say about your competition and following specific interests.
Social networks are like potato chips. You can’t have just one. So if you want to keep track of what your friends and contacts are doing on their multiple networks (assuming they don’t have Ping.fm accounts), Gist will let you know about their latest tweet, post or like.
I consider it a light-weight contact resource manager. Since it also connects to my e-mail accounts, it keeps track of when I communicate with them. I know there are more powerful options out there, but this may be just enough for me.
OK, this isn’t a specific tool but a technology. One of Twitter’s nicer tendencies is to create RSS feeds for updates. If your RSS reader is how you keep track of the Internet, then add Twitter feeds. Not only can you monitor what any specific tweep posts, but you can have a feed of search results. Again, you can track any keyword.
This works very well for me in Google Reader. I can organize different feeds into categories. This all adds up to a very powerful dashboard. The big drawback is that the updates are delayed. The RSS feeds seem to update on a schedule so it doesn’t give real-time monitoring. Which is fine for me. Your mileage may vary.
For what it’s worth, I don’t see the value of using any of these tools to duplicate messages. Why would someone follow me on Twitter and Facebook if they get the same messages twice? I try to use the networks for specific purposes. But most of the value I get from these tools is in monitoring. There are some very powerful ways to sift through all of those streams.
How do you automate your social media management?
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I do not automate my social media management.
Though, I sometimes use TweetDeck to manage my tweets better.
I’ve been a HootSuite user for a long time, but I’m becoming a fan of http://mediafunnel.com – it’s got some very cool features, such as keyword/brand monitoring alerts sent to you via email or SMS, and a guest posting widget to let others contribute to your stream (great for events!).
Another tool to add to the list – Sendible.com. It lets you engage with people across multiple channels at any time. Offers things like scheduling, social media analytics and brand monitoring.
Another site for automation is http://twithawk.com
Lets you do automated marketing on twitter, that or it can just find the best matches for you to look over and confirm / reject before sending a reply.
I’ve seen this website that coming soon…it looks fab.
It’s called http://www.mibubbles.com
I’ve pre registered looking forward to checking out all of the features.
This http://www.Mububblesm.com looks amazing…the discussion above points toward the wanting for a site where you or I can manage all our social media profiles in central place. Well this site mibubbles does exactly that. It seems we can also manage our email accounts too.
I think this is the solution. Let’s see
Hootsuite for me is the best, not only does it let you track, analyze, post updates, schedule updates, manager all networks, auto RSS posts. Best of all its free, unlike pretty much all of these mentioned above in the comments section.
Great collection thanks for sharing this i just bookmarked and share it on twitter you can follow me on http://twitter.com/#!/MAUSEO_seo
I agree, great collection, thank you for sharing.
Another social media automation platform that’s worth including in your list is http://sendible.com.
I’ve been using Hootsuite as a photographer to plan my twitts and facebook status, and as a social media manager for 3 companies. Wow!It’s so useful and simple to use!
i will like to know how to use this tool well and also to have more followers
I have to thank you for the efforts you’ve put in writing this website. I really hope to see the same high-grade content by you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my very own blog now 😉
We’re glad you find the resources useful! 🙂
Excellent post, i love all these social sites.
it makes my life easier.
I really want to find something free like Ping.fm. But thanks for this post nonetheless.
automated tools are pretty much boring these days and tend to de-pride urself. smh
Thanks for the list, I completely agree a balance of both manual and automated is best. Theres nothing wrong with using automated services to send good content to a wider audience. I’ve been using ping FM (now seesmic) and hootsuite for a while, but now I’m spreading to new social sites I’ll see if the others cover more. Thanks again
Thanks for the list, ping. fm is not working its redirecting on another site which is not good as ping. fm. I need an automated tool through which I can spread my message to all popular social media sites.
We are currently introducing Falcon Social, an agency centric SMMS platform. We are one of only 10 platforms which have received 3 out of 4 badges from Facebook PMD program. Have a look here: http://youtu.be/y9NrzTSd6ZU Beats the socks of off HootSuite and Wildfire any day! 🙂
I like Hootsuite and i use it to monitor my social world at one place as well.. It really saves my time and energy!
Good review. I like BufferApp for scheduled tweeting, and in1.com for single click sharing to multiple networks. Both of these offer just the right amount of automation without social spamming.
I’m surprised nobody has mentions my favorite way of automating social networks! I really love Gremln! Its was simple and even in the Free version it has a lot of features. I wrote about even more services on my blog. I really liked the set up of this article! There was a lot of great information that was easy to get to. Thanks for writing it!
Ive done a little reading on this and Im liking your article the best so far. Ive been using Hootsuite for about a week and cant figure out Foursquare. Any help on that one?
Great selected tools
Thanks for posting
Hootsuite does a great job posting to social network sites, we have it setup to use an RSS feed of our wordpress blog. When we post on the blog it automatically goes out to facebook, twitter, google plus and linkedin. Hootsuite also lets you define how often it should check RSS feeds (i.e. by the hour) and you can configure shortened URL’s back to the original post.
IFTTT.com is also highly recommended for posting content on other social sites like Tumbler, Delicious, Blogger and Instagram.
These two tools combined are very powerful!
Hootsuite is the one best option that I have ever preferred among many other platforms for scheduling the posts. Quite easier to move with the options embedded in it. Great share!
Hootsuite is the best tool I’ve ever use for social media. Thanks for recommending other tools, spoilt for choice.
Yes. Very good list, but you forgot to add Oveemo. http://oveemo.com. This social sync tool can update Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin with status updates, photos and videos and it can manage Facebook pages and groups. Also it’s a personal websystem on it’s own.