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4 tools for easier social media management

4 tools for easier social media management Adam Boyden

Social media is the hottest trend in marketing today, and it's dramatically changing how companies market themselves. As the popularity of social media has grown, however, so have the number of networks to update and tools that can help. What is right for you?  How can you better manage all your content and networks? Well, here is a tip to the hundreds of thousands of businesses that have made the move toward incorporating social media into their business: streamline, streamline, streamline. (Did you get that?)

Below are a few effective and easy-to-use tools that I recommend to save you time and a lot of frustration in the long run. By using tools that aggregate information you will more easily be able to manage all of your social media networks and tools from one central location, ultimately cutting down the amount of work that marketers must do to reach their various communities.

Do you Ping?
Ping.fm is a simple and free tool that was developed to address the frustration and time it takes to manage multiple social networks. With Ping.fm, you can easily update all of your profiles, messages, and status information with ease and from one central location of your choice (SMS, MMS, IM, email, or third-party and developer apps).

Now you can even "ping" from a community toolbar within your browser. So say you wanted to let all of your various fans and followers know about a promotion or new offering. With Ping.fm, one notice is sent to each of your social networks, simultaneously. And it is free. 

Use the browser
The value of the operating system for moving information and applications is declining fast; the browser is where work is getting done. You can't simply build websites and write blogs and hope people will stop by; you need to syndicate, share, and socialize.

Organizations such as Twitter Moms are doing it right. The group centralizes all of its best content in one location in the browser so that fans can find information fast. This social networking site aimed at influential moms realized it could accomplish a great deal if it used a conduit for its information, allowing information to flow through the browser.

Are you a Chatterbox?
Social media is distributed across different networks and, as a result, includes a vast amount of unrelated content. Consequently, tracking everything and determining its value poses a challenge for most individuals and organizations. To address these challenges, ChatterBox created a collaboration platform for monitoring and managing social media conversations across multiple social networks.

Users are able to streamline workflow, as well as prioritize, tag, and assign follow-up activities to team members, ensuring that all online conversations are acknowledged in a timely manner. As a result, teams and individuals are more organized and able to engage in more meaningful conversations. For instance, a widget maker might have one person following product complaints, another focused on corporate issues, and still another on competitive movements. And a marketing manager can delegate tasks, assignments, and responses to individual team members on a particular issue.

Social Radar
Your eyes and ears cannot be everywhere at once. But, you have to protect that brand you worked so hard to establish. Social Radar is a rapidly growing content collection, with millions of sources and access to articles, posts, and messages. Social Radar lets you know what others are saying, without you having to do the work manually.

Say you want to know what is being said about your brand, your product, and your customer service. Well, Social Radar can give you that information without a marketer having to dedicate an internal or external resource to the gathering and calculating of data.

Social media is exciting, and it is here to stay. But its promise is only as valuable as how well marketers can integrate it into their lives. Make the burden too cumbersome and even the most interesting technology will fall to the wayside. Make it manageable and social media will continue to be a valuable addition to your business.

Adam Boyden is president of Conduit.

On Twitter? Follow iMedia at @iMediaTweet.

Adam is responsible for marketing, business development and U.S. operations. Previously, Adam was the Vice President of Business Development and Marketing, and then General Manager of Xfire a provider of communications and tools to more than 11.5...

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