Social media is a double edged sword in the world today. On one hand you pretty much need it if you are going to be doing any form of customer outreach, promotion or branding, even for yourself.
But on the other it is a time suck, and it is hard not to get lost in hours of surfing Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and the multitude of other online stopping points that have so much to entice you away from productive work.
That’s why you need some tools in your corner to get you past the hump. You can still use social media, you just need to do it more productively. Here are nine tools to help you do it, covering every facet of social media use.
I was a long time user of Passpack to save all of my passwords in the past, because I occasionally had to share them with clients. I still use it, but in a much less dedicated manner. Now it has become a database for sharing.
Everything else goes into 1Password, a tool a friend of mine converted me to a couple of months ago. It not only stores all of your valuable information, including credit card or financial institution details, but it signs you into all of your accounts securely, with a click. This is such a relief given how many social accounts I manage on behalf of brands that I can’t stop singing its praises.
I am a huge Cyfe fangirl. It is the most thorough business platform on the web, and unlike others it actually delivers on the all-in-one claim. You set up widgets on your dashboard, and customize them to do pretty much anything you want.
Sales, customer service, help desk, technical support, marketing, social media, CRM, analytics… the list goes on and on. All for $19 per month for their premium service, which is an insanely low amount given what they offer. If you want to get all of your ducks in a row, Cyfe is a must.
Standing for If This, Then That, IFTTT is an awesome, easy to use tool that combines different apps into a single service. For example, you can combine Wikipedia with Feedly to get something new to learn about every day.
Or sync Buffer and Google Calendar. These are called recipes, and you can make any number of them to turn your Internet use into something much more streamlined and clean. They have a number for social media sites, so you can limit the time you spend on any of them without sacrificing what you want, or need, to do.
You are sitting on the web, working on a piece of content you need to finish that night to publish by the morning. In spite of the latening hour, you keep finding yourself browsing AskReddit threads about creepy ghost stories. It has nothing to do with your task, keeps distracting you, and is setting you back on your deadline.
Welcome to the attention span given to us all by the unending goodies of the Internet. Cold Turkey can stop those distractions and keep you on task, including by stopping you from checking social media profiles.
Are people talking about you brand? Probably, but most dashboards are cumbersome and pick up unrelated conversation that has nothing to do with what you are watching for.
So you have to go through manually, finding the mentions that actually are relevant and picking them out of the lineup. Mention is a better way of monitoring your reputation, offering you cool email alerts.
Have multiple accounts on a wide range of platforms? You can use Agorapulse. It is a social media dashboard with a focus on scheduling content.
Monitor all messages from one place, watch for activity involving your brand, answer tweets and page comments, and more. All from one place for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google Plus, and LinkedIn. That’s right, they have Google Plus compatibility! That already sets them apart from a lot of dashboards that either haven’t gained access to their API, or don’t see the need to. This is a great one for local pages in particular.
LinkedIn is one of the worst designed social media sites on the web, I am just going to come out and say it. No one likes searching through it, navigating their profiles, or dealing with the ugly profile pages and the haphazard information. But there is no doubt it is a useful social media platform.
To avoid spending ages navigating their site, you can get the relevant details right in your Gmail account with Rapportive. I love this tool, it has saved me so much time. Not to mention it has made my networking a million times more efficient.
Here are some rapportive alternatives too!
If you have a team to run, keeping track of every task can be incredibly hard. When you add social media into the mix it can feel impossible, and you end up playing backtrack and catch up as much as you do going through your original tasks.
Asana is a pretty great team management tool that lets you track everything your team is doing, in real time. I really like using it to keep my content, social and sales people in the loop, and watch what they are doing.
How much time have you wasted sifting through images to try and find copyright free ones that actually match your posts on social media? The answer is probably too much.
While we all have our special sites, this one is a must add for anyone doing social publication. Pixabay actually has a database of free images, not “free” pages that have horrible pics then lead to paid stock advertised underneath. There are more than 750,000 to choose from.
Bonus! 5 Best Social Media Productivity Browser Plugins
- Broken links checker: Don’t waste your time clicking broken links on social media feeds. This page explains http status code very well for you to understand
- Twitter URL expander: See the actual linked domains right within Twitter feed. Skip those you know you don’t want to click.
- Social Fixer for Facebook: Filter your Facebook feeds to never hear about politics and keep sanity
- Dayboard: Keep a simple to-do daily to-do list and check things as done before closing the browser
- Save to Pocket: Don’t waste your time reading everything you see on social media right away. Save URLs for later reading using this sweet extension.
Do you have any tools you think should be added to the list? Let us know in the comments!