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  • Quick and Dirty Social Media for Writers: Social Media Dashboards

    Posted on February 6th, 2012 jean No comments

    Welcome to Social Media Monday.

    Today’s quick and dirty peek at social media tools is about efficiency. Because let’s face it… this social media thing can be a real time sink. You want to use it to your advantage, but you don’t want to spend all day on it. You’ve got writing to do! So, what is an easy way to manage your accounts and update your statuses on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn (note: generally you can manage other social media accounts as well)? How do you quickly share a link to that funny writer video, great blog post, or toot your own horn? You use a handy-dandy social media dashboard.

    TweetDeck Desktop

    What is a Social Media Dashboard?

    Basically, a social media dashboard is a place where you can post to your social media accounts from one place. In good dashboards you can see your follower’s updates, post your own updates, schedule status updates for later, create lists, feeds, and more. Your dashboard is linked to all your social media accounts saving you time. You can see all you need to see from Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites all from one place.

    Your dashboard can be online, be a handy app, or something you can download onto your desktop, or all three.

    Seesmic Mobile App

    What Are Some Social Media Dashboards?

    There are quite a few dashboards out there and they are all different. Many of them have the basics listed above (give or take a few features).

    Personally, I have tried TweetDeck, SocialOomph, Ping.fm/Seesmic, and HootSuite. Currently, my favourite of the three is probably HootSuite and Seesmic due to the interface (quick to figure out) and the amount of work I can get done from one place. As with everything, all have their flowers, all have their poop.

    SocialOomph Online Screenshot

    TweetDeck, HootSuite and Seesmic allow you to see what your follow folks in Twitter are tweeting which is lovely. You can also schedule updates to be sent out at various times throughout the day or month (SocialOomph is great for this as well).

    SocialOomph has it’s own pluses such as great business features–so if you want more and don’t mind paying, this may be your ticket. Plus, it is a lightweight site which means speed. None of this bogging down like some of the other sites. However, you can’t view what your follow folks are tweeting and reply to them using the free version.

    I haven’t quite figured out the whole Ping.fm thing. It seems like you can only post updates–however, you can send your updates to more social media sites than I’ve ever even heard of! That’s got some pluses to it. It also seems like it is connected to the Seesmic dashboard (same company?) which has the whole gorgeous dashboard thing going on. It is what Ping.fm isn’t.

    In the end, I am flipping between several as I figure out which one will meet my needs the best. So far it is looking like it will either be Hootsuite or Seesmic.

    How Do You Get a Social Media Dashboard?

    Many are free for what you may need as a writer. However, they usually have business plans  that cost a bit per month but have more features. Depending on how you use social media, you may require one of these plans. Or you may not.

    Linkies to the folks I’ve mentioned:

    SocialOomph.com    Seesmic.com   Ping.fm   TweetDeck    HootSuite

     

    Do you use a social media dashboard? I’d love to hear what you think about it. Pluses? Drawbacks? Or as I say, the flowers and the poop.

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