Category Archives: Social Media Tools Reviews

Social Media Tools Review

Hootsuite and Engagor

Each Friday will be dedicated to a review of some of the social media tools available. The review will include an overview of each tool, pros and cons, and Visibly Media’s official recommendation.

This week’s article focuses on two social media scheduling tools: Hootsuite and Engagor.

HootsuiteHootsuite is a web-based scheduling application for scheduling posts to your social media platforms. With a free account you can manage up to five (5) profiles. By the word “manage”, you can:

  • Schedule posts/status updates by date and time,
  • Monitor up to 10 streams of Twitter information, including:
    • Direct Messages (DMs)
    • Mentions (@yourname)
    • Lists
    • Hashtags.
  • Respond directly from Hootsuite,
  • URL shortener (ow.ly),
  • Post and respond through a mobile app,
  • Follow up to 2 RSS feeds,
  • Access up to 3 free analytics reports.

There are two pay versions called Pro and Enterprise. The Pro version offers plenty for most business owners. Inside the Pro version you can manage up to 100 social media profiles – perfect for social media managers. Along with the basics of the Free account, you also can follow an unlimited number of RSS feeds, include up to 9 team members on your account, and access up to 10 analytics reports. The Enterprise version upscales more for large companies, governments or organizations. I recommend starting with a free trial before registering for an account. For more information click this link.

EngagorEngagor is another web-based management application used to manage your social media profiles and engagement in real time. This program:

  • Monitors conversations on the web,
  • Offers real-time customer engagement using their own CRM,
  • Provides analytics and reporting on campaigns, profile, and online reputation.

At this writing I have not received my free 14-day trial yet so I can fully test this program. I will give an update as soon as I have access, as well as an overview of pricing and the goodies included.

The takeaway:

Take advantage of scheduling and monitoring software. Those businesses that use tools like these are more successful in their customer engagements because they are more aware of customers’ needs, complaints/compliments (a.k.a. sentiment), and questions. The scheduling portion allows more time to be spent in front of your customers while giving your brand the consistent, timely visibility to your followers.

Remember:

people are becoming more social online and will use their preferred social media channel to not just follow, but to connect with you — usually when they’re dissatisfied or upset. Approximately 67% of customers will expect a response within their social media channel within 24 hours, while 42% will expect it within 1 hour.

Ready to learn a new social media platform? Connect with me by phone, social media or click this link and let’s get you up to speed!

Be strategic. Be visible. Be found.



Social Media Tools Review

Basecamp vs. Workflowy

Each Friday will be dedicated to a review of some of the social media tools available. The review will include an overview of each tool, pros and cons, and Visibly Media’s official recommendation.

This week’s article is about two project management tools, Basecamp and Workflowy.

Basecamp by 37 Signals, project management applicationBasecamp is a web-based application developed the company 37 Signals to solve their own internal challenges of managing design projects. Debuting in 2004, this tool manages everything a project has (or doesn’t have) between a company and their client:

  • Communications between clients and/or employees/contractors.
  • File uploads and downloads.
  • Collaboration.
  • Multiple projects.
  • Calendar planning and management.
  • To-do lists.
  • Email.
  • Tracking updates, changes and revisions.
  • Mobile app.

There are monthly payment structures for any budget as well as a 60-day trial to test-drive the application.

Workflowy, project management applicationWorkflowy is another web-based application used to manage projects and personal to-do lists. The functionality is very linear in its approach; to use, you must think of your work as a type of hierarchial workflow chart (no pun intended!). Debuting in 2010, here is what this tool can do:

  • Personal to-do lists
  • Project lists
  • Drill down to sub-lists using indents
  • Sharing lists by email via secret link
  • Improve collaboration with team
  • Create templates
  • Use hashtag keywordss and @ symbol to track collaborators, assignments, and importance of lists

Workflowy is originally a free application; however, there is a pro version with monthly and yearly payment structures for both individual and team use with more customization options.

Professional recommendation: Basecamp gets our official nod. Both applications are well-rated, so ultimately it comes down to how you use them and which program best suits your company’s needs. Basecamp, however, has one benefit lacking currently in Workflowy: the ability for clients and contractors to log-in to your project for communication/updates and uploads/downloads, which gives you, the project manager, the ability to view recent log-ins by either client or contractor. The chief benefit: easier project management to allow you more time in front of your clients.

Be strategic. Be visible. Be found.



Social Media Tools Review

Pinstamatic: A Great Partner With Pinterest

Each Friday will be dedicated to a review of some of the social media tools available. The review will include an overview of each tool, pros and cons, and Visibly Media’s official recommendation.

This week’s article is about a new tool for Pinterest I stumbled upon, Pinstamatic, which is currently in beta-test.

Pinstamatic home pagePinstamatic is very simple to use with Pinterest. It creates images from options on the home page; these images can then be pinned to a board under your Pinterest profile. From the home page the 8 options are:

  1. Website
  2. Quote
  3. Sticky (think post-it-notes)
  4. Spotify
  5. Twitter
  6. Calendar
  7. Place/Location
  8. Photo with Caption

The Sticky (#3) is rather interesting — it really does remind me of a post-it-note! You have a limited choice of colors for your Sticky and can put anything on it. The font is a type of legible handwriting. It appears there may be a word limit of around 25, so strive to keep your Sticky for short notes. After you create your Sticky, you will be prompted as to which Pinterest board your Sticky should be posted.

The Website (#1) allows you to copy and paste a web page URL/address into the left “search” window. When you click “Preview”, the right window pane refreshes to show the entire web page. Click “Pin” to upload this information to one of your relevant Pinterest boards.

By clicking on the Quote (#2) application, you can add quotations as an image to one of your Pinterest boards. The typeface is a bold sans-serif (i.e., Arial, Helvetica, etc.) and will adjust its length to your post. There is a space to credit the author’s name, if his/her name is known.

Using the Spotify (#4) application lets users pin a favorite album or a single song to one of their Pinterest boards. When the pin appears on your board, viewers can click the link and hear the song. Sharing your tunes has never been easier!

The Calendar/Date (#6) application allows a calendar date to be pinned to one of your boards. I’m not sure what the best use of this application should be, although if I am pinning a date I would want some type of hint or reminder as to what happens on that date. More to come as I see how this application is used, but for now I would use the Sticky option and create a board for special dates.

The Twitter (#5) feature is interesting. You can pin your profile and your last Tweet to a board. Viewers can then click the link and go straight to your Twitter page. I would use sparingly and make sure the last Tweet sent is the one you want displayed.

You can now pin a map to your favorite restaurant, coffeeshop, or any other location directly to a Pinterest board by using the Location/Place (#7) application. Just be careful using this one too much, as this could also allow someone to track a pattern to your movements.

The last application is the Photo with Caption (#8). Upload a photo or image file directly from your computer or camera, add a caption, and click the Pin button. I see this as a great tool for photographers, graphic designers and marketers!

Professional recommendation: I see this as a great accompaniment to Pinterest. But, don’t take my word for it — give it a test drive for yourself. Reply to this post and let me know what you recommend: use it or lose it?

Be strategic. Be visible. Be found.



Social Media Tools Review

Using Twubs & tchat to view Twitter hashtags

Each Friday will be dedicated to a review of some of the social media tools available. The review will include an overview of each tool, pros and cons, and Visibly Media’s official recommendation.

Twubs logotchat logo

This week’s article is about two internet Twitter tools, Twubs and tChat. Both platforms support Twitter users by allowing users to follow a particular hashtag. This is particularly helpful when it comes to following Twitter chats. Let me explain a bit about these chats, so the cart doesn’t come before the horse.

Twitter chats are online discussions that occur in near-real-time on a specific day and time. A hashtag is created by the chat organizer for the users to follow the conversations. Examples of such hashtags are #linkedinchat , #mediachat and #blogchat . Platforms have been created to help users follow a particular conversation in a single browser window.

Twubs search barTwubs is one such online platform. It’s very easy to use and you don’t need to create an account first: go to the home page, type in a hashtag word or phrase (no spaces) in the search bar, and hit the Enter key. The browser window will display the conversations surrounding this particular hashtag. From inside this window, you can post, reply, re-Tweet, and favorite a Tweet. The upside is being able to view all tweets around a certain hashtag. The drawbacks I encountered were two-fold: 1) the refresh rate wasn’t as fast as I would prefer, and at some points it was stalled (I was using Google Chrome at the time); 2) to speed up the refresh rate I had to log in with my Twitter ID (not a big deal), but I wasn’t fond of allowing the application to post Tweets for me or update my profile.

tchat search bartChat is another online platform that allows users to follow Twitter hashtags. Go to the home page, enter a hashtag, and click the “Start Chatting” button. The functionality is the same as Twubs with 3 differences: 1) you can sign up via Twitter and it will not ask to post on your behalf; 2) the refresh rate is much faster; and 3) the icons for reply, re-Tweet, quote, or favorite are larger and darker, much easier to see.

Professional recommendation: tChat is the winner for simplicity and ease of use. I may try using Twubs in other browser platforms (or on a Macintosh, I use PC/Windows at VM) and see how it responds, but so far this test didn’t leave a good impression.

Be strategic. Be visible. Be found.