With so many social networking websites available today, it leaves little to wonder how people get in over their head when it comes to managing 10, 20, or more social media profiles. To manage your social network, across profiles at Facebook, Linkedin, Digg, Reddit, Flickr, MySpace and YouTube is virtually a full-time job! In order to keep up with your ever-growing Twitter following and growth of friends and business associates across all of your other Social networking sites, you must utilize some of the vast online social networking tools available at your disposal. Most social networking tools that are designed to streamline the organization and to manage your social network can be inexpensive or free to use, so it’s one of the best values available to social networking addicts and social media professionals alike. Here are 15 of the most innovative and popular social networking tools available today to help get you started in your quest for social media engagement domination (if that’s even possible)…
Streamlining Social Media Activity
I’ve used Ping.fm for quite awhile now and am very happy with this little app’s performance. Ping.fm is a free service that allows you to ping a message to any of your social media profiles across the web, such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Plurk and many more – Over 40 social networking sites are currently supported. This saves you a ton of time trying to post similar content to several social networking sites individually. Another useful feature of Ping.fm is that it automatically shortens urls for easier posting to Twitter.
FriendFeed is one of the most popular social networking aggregators on the Internet. It’s a lightweight, easy to use application that allows you to share content with your friends from various social networking sites, including Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and more – Currently over 50 sites are supported. FriendFeed will also easily integrate with blogs or websites, and there are both private and public settings available.
As the so-called “perfect companion for FriendFeed”, MySocial 24×7 is a lightweight sidebar extension for Firefox that works perfectly with FriendFeed. This extension keeps you updated about what’s going on with your friends or “everyone” at Twitter, MySpace, YouTube and more. All of your passwords are stored in the Firefox Password Manager, so replying to messages or posting your own is extremely fast and efficient. The advantage of this app is that it’s relatively non-intrusive, so you can continue to browse the Internet while the MySocial 24×7 sidebar continues to update you in real-time.
Atomkeep is a small tech company that provides an easy solution to manage your social network across multiple accounts, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Yelp and more. It’s also a great service if you’re looking to manage multiple career search websites, such as Jobster, Monster, Job.com. You get a ton of functionality in one easy to use interface, which is sure to save you time and resources on managing each social site individually. One thing worth noting is that Atomkeep is currently not accepting new members, although their website says that they’ll be accepting new registrations as capacity allows. Possible social enterprise software for the future of social media management?
Shareaholic is another lightweight Firefox add-on that allows you to easily share content on any of over 60 social networking sites quickly and easily. It also offers other advanced features, such as real-time trending, and it’s totally customizable. One of its greatest features – other than speeding up your social networking – is that it helps to declutter your web browser by eliminating the need for social media buttons. Shareaholic won the Mozilla Foundation Grand Prize Award based on user experiences, innovation, technical correctness, and use of open standards – sounds like a winner to me.
Event Box allows Mac users the ability to run multiple social services at once. Currently in its beta phase, EventBox only offers support for eight social networking sites, including Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Digg, Reddit and more – More networks are sure to follow as EventBox progresses. The advantage of using EventBox for social networking is its beautiful and easy to use interface based on Leopard’s CoreAnimation technology, which is a flexible and intuitive design. EventBox also allows you to communicate via messaging services without having to disrupt your browser window.
Minggl is a very cool and interesting application that integrates with IE, Firefox, and Firefox for Mac to streamline social networking across six popular services (Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Flickr, Linkedin, and Digg) – Minggl claims support for more services in the near future. This lightweight application provides a surprisingly powerful punch when it comes to speeding up your social networking. It stores all of your login info for each social site and allows you to send status updates or tweets directly from Minggl’s interface within seconds without having to visit the social site directly, making it suer easy to manage your social network. You can also update as many social sites as you’d like at one time. I expect this tool to become increasingly popular in the next year or two because of its incredibly simple interface and useful functionality.
8Hands is a free desktop application similar to Minggl in many ways, but it offers support for 10 social sites with more to come very soon. It also offers mobile support for staying on top of your favorite social websites while you’re on-the-go. Some of the most notable features of this innovative social networking tool include instant real-time notifications of new messages/friend requests/videos/feeds/comments/and more, drag and drop functionality, statistics, and easy access to all of the supported social networks from one interface.
Social Networking Profile Organization
Retaggr will benefit anyone with more than a couple online social profiles with its seamless integration with many of the most popular social networking sites today. This service is a bit different than other social network management tools, because Retaggr allows you to create a digital profile card – sort of like a business card – which displays all of your social networking, blogging, and other personal information for others to get in touch with you or follow you on any number of social networking sites. Your profile card gets its own personalized web address to make it easier to keep all of your social networking information in one place. This is one of the best tools available for bringing together all of your online profiles into one easy to manage page. See a sample profile card here.
DandyID is very similar to Retaggr in that it offers a set of tools to manage your social network online profiles more efficiently. It supports over 300 services, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube and more. There’s also a WordPress plugin available called DandyID Services, which makes integrating DandyID functionality into your WordPress blog easier than ever. DandyID launched in April, 2008 and it seems to be growing in popularity very quickly, so expect to hear a lot more about this service in the coming months.
GizaPage is yet another tool for organizing all of your social networking profiles into one personalized url (yourname.gizapage.com). This service works by setting up an individual tab for each social site at your unique url, such as having one tab for Twitter, one for Facebook, and so on. GizaPage also offers a robust statistics package and a digital profile card similar to Retaggr’s.
TwitterFeed is a great tool for blog owners looking to market their latest blog posts on Twitter. Instead of having to manually post to Twitter each time you update your blog, TwitterFeed automatically posts an update to your Twitter account with a link to your new blog post. TwitterFeed is one of the easiest Twitter apps to use, because once you’re signed up and have your automatic Twitter message configured, it’s a completely hands-off service. It also keeps track of real-time stats for added functionality.
TweetDeck (currently in Beta) works seamlessly with Twitter, and provides you with advanced statistics, local trends, Facebook integration, easy messaging, url shortening and more. Plus you can easily manage multiple Twitter accounts using TweetDeck – for example – If you have a personal account and a separate Twitter account for your website.
Social Media Web Browsers
Flock is a social web browser powered by Mozilla, and it works by integrating a powerful set of tools for easy cross-social networking without having to visit each individual social media website. It allows the user to drag and drop text/images for posting at any social networking site, have real-time Facebook or Twitter chats with friends via a sidebar within the browser, post directly to your blog, manage RSS feeds, easily integrate web mail and much more. Flock also features a healthy bag of add-ons available, much like Firefox, for full customization of the look and functionality of your browser. This is one of the most powerful free social networking tools out there right now.
Billed as the world’s first mobile social media browser, Kinoma Play connects you with all of the most popular social networking sites – such as YouTube, Facebook, Flickr, Picassa, Twitter and more – while you’re on-the-go. It allows you to submit content to multiple social networking sites quickly and easily via any Windows Mobile phone.
I hope these tools help you manage your social network more effectively. Got any other social networking tools that you use? Tell us about your gotta-have social media tools in the comments section below – We’d love to hear about other useful tools for streamlining social networking.