Top 5 Social Media Tools Companies Use

We all know the three most popular social media apps in our toolkit are: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. But what else are companies using to have an edge and be more efficient and productive in their social media efforts? How are they actually Tweeting? How are they monitoring? Here are five tools that were found to be popular and widely used among brands and businesses!

A. Cotweet

What’s awesome: Web-based social media engagement, management and reporting solution that helps companies of all sizes engage, track and analyze conversations about their brands across the most popular and influential social communities today, Twitter and Facebook.

Not so awesome: There can be issues with lag time in Tweets being posted and there is a lack of autofill of Twitter names for tagging in tweets and hashtags.

Companies that use it: Whole foods

Price: Standard for $600 or $1500/month for the Enterprise Edition (unlimited users, unlimited accounts). This is what I’ve read through other sources. The website does not tell exact prices unless you consult a sales agent.

B. Radian6

What’s awesome: A social media engagement tool that also lets you to find out who the top influencers are for your product/service category along with tracking conversations and engagement impact on your brand.
Not so awesome: The CRM capability would be great to have and thanks to their new integration with Salesforce, it is possible now via the integration.
Companies that use it: Dominos
Price: Radian6 dashboard pricing starts at $600 per month. They also offer a 50% discount for registered and qualified charitable organizations. Contact Sales for more info.

C. Tweetdeck

What’s awesome: Ability to listen, monitor, respond, and engage efficiently and effectively on your social platforms from one dashboard or on the go.
Not so awesome: Lacking Google Analytics integration and the ability to save draft tweets to schedule for later (why many have switched to hootsuite).
Companies that use it: NBC
Price: Free

D. Seesmic

What’s awesome: You can monitor mentions with ease by utilizing one dashboard for all your social platforms. Cool perk? Integration with Evernote and other nifty apps!
Not so awesome: Lacking theme support and push notification features for smartphone app.
Companies that use it: Samsung
Price: Free

E. Klout

What’s awesome: Determine your “influence” and compare/contrast with others in order to see how far your brand reaches and how your social networks like Twitter and Facebook impact that influence or target larger influencers in your target market to spread the word. Cool integration with Google Reader for blog influence too!
Not so awesome: Measuring of ROI regarding perk program for influencers appears difficult
Companies that use it: Audi
Price: Free
This post was originally written for Socialnomics

5 Ways to Save Time on Twitter

How much time do you spend on Twitter? I know I sometimes spend more time than I intend to, looking for the latest news, latest updates from friends, and the coolest stuff going on in my city and cool stats and info to link to and blog about. Fortunately, for me…and you – there are plenty of ways to save time on Twitter and not waste time we could be spending on other things like work!

The following are my suggestions on how to save time…

 (1) – A tool that helps cut through the clutter of finding andkeeping up with social media news that you view awesome and important.  It collects any links that you share on Twitter (and other social networks) in order for you to go back and be able to search them when you have time. It bookmarks them in a way that is easily searchable for you. Why waste time trying to find that link, has it all stored away for you, ready and waiting.

(2) Tweetdeck -  Too many followers, too little time? I have friends who have over 50,00 followers and I wonder how they do it. Yikes! Platforms likeTweetdeck are super helpful! You can organize your followers in lists in order to differentiate from people you know in real life, those who are folks from certain industries, news sites, local folks, and more. This is especially helpful for community managers who are trying to keep track of their competition, customers, and potential customers. A time saver and possible lead gen tool if used to our advantage!

(3) SocialOomph – Want to Tweet but you won’t be around to do it? On vacation? Away for the weekend? Schedule them to go out while you’re away with SocialOomph. This is great for blog posts you want to get out, but don’t have time to be at your computer to Tweet them.

(4) Tweetbeep – No time to sit and look at Twitter or your platform of choice for Tweeting? Tweetbeep is a great app that allows you to get hourly (or whatever time allotment you choose) summary of searches, mentions, terms, hashtags, etc. For example, are you working on a product campaign, promotional event or just monitoring your brand? Tweetbeep will let you know what’s being said when it’s said, or in a convenient time for you. Great way to keep up and respond accordingly, especially if it’s someone asking a question, and/or commenting on your brand or product. In addition, you can keep up with what’s being said on the competition or just an event you wish you could have attended but missed. Useful and simple to set up.

 (5)  Listorious – Starting out and not sure who to follow? Find an index of lists with Listorious and follow the lists that are interesting and relevant to your personal brand and/or business brand. That way you can see what people in your industry are talking about. Great way to get started and/or increase followers by showing interest and  following them.

Bonus Tip:

Curation! Are you starting out with your content and strategy for it? Or are you struggling with time this week on creating it? Curating content is a great way to share content without taking the time to create it yourself. For example, have a list created of people you follow for relevant news in your industry. Then you can ReTweet a Tweet they shared with a comment. Additionally you can find a blog post they did and comment on it in your Tweet. Great way to show it is not all about you and still share relevant content to you and your industry.

As you can see Twitter is a useful and awesome tool, but it can take time to use effectively. Fortunately for us, the tools above are a great way to cut down on some of that time and still Tweet in a matter that is beneficial and awesome.

Note: this post was originally written for oneforty, which was acquired by Hubspot. 

Case Study: How Boloco Uses Social Media for Success

boloco: one word… yum! Not only do they have scrumptious burritos, but they also are a great example on how to utilize socialmedia such as Twitter for success. I had the pleasure of interviewing Sara Steele-Rogers, the social media maven for boloco to get some insight on their strategy, tactics, and steps to success through social media.

ME: Sara, tell us “your story”…what brought you to boloco?

SARA: I’ve been a fan of boloco since The Wrap days. While in graduate school at Emerson College, I interned with Yelp. Yelp is extremely active at community events, and so is boloco. After bumping into the boloco team three or four times at events around the city, we became great friends. Once I graduated in May 2010 (and even before then), I expressed a great deal of interest to John Pepper, boloco‘s CEO, about joining the team. One thing led to another, and here I am today!

ME: Awesome. So let’s talk about Twitter and how boloco utilizes the different handles they have. What was your original social media strategy for utilizing Twitter and how has it changed over time?

SARA: Originally, John as in charge of the @boloco Twitter handle became recognized for his quick, honest approach to responding to every guest. Once I joined the team, I became the main driver of the @boloco handle, with John chiming in occasionally. He now runs his ownTwitter handle, @bolocoCEO, and many of our stores have their own Twitter handles. The involvement of the individual stores varies, but we do our best to have at least one person oversee the specific handles and publicize information relevent to their community. It’s important we don’t overwhelm our Twitter stream with hyper-local content.

ME: What specific tactics does boloco use and how does that separate them from their competition? In addition, what are you monitoring on Twitter? What tools do you use to monitor?
SARA: Ever since the inception of @boloco three years ago, the primary use of Twitter has been to listen to and respond to our guests. It’s not just guests who complain – it’s guests who praise us, have suggestions, valuable feedback, customer complaints, and even FourSquarecheck-ins. Our tone is also different. Boloco is human. We’re 100% honest. We’re not afraid to re-tweet our mistakes or comparisons to our competition. We also like to surprise guests – load a free menu item on their boloco card if they get something not-so-good from a competitor. Load an additional freebie on their boloco card so they can enjoy their free birthday burrito with a friend (for free).

In regards to tools and monitoring, we’re pretty basic at boloco. I use Tweetdeck,Kurrently, Twitter for iPhone. We’re looked into larger-scale monitoring tools likeRadian6 and Scout Labs, but aren’t ready to make the investment just yet. Admittedly, the scape is ever-evolving and it’s tough to keep up!

ME: Why should we follow @boloco?
SARA: We hope people follow us so we can add to their overall boloco experience. We want our guests to be assured that we’re always listening, and feel comfortable voicing their opinions… good or bad. We’ve made great changes to our company because of Twitterfeedback. If you’re bored, we’ll talk to you If you’re looking for some humor or something unexpected, we might provide that, too. And less often, we’ll promote our in-store promotions, free burrito days, Snoloco days, and other offers we hope will encourage you to come visit us.


ME: If you were stuck on an island, what three tools could you never give up as a community manager?

SARA: Sense of humor, Tweetdeck, and TwitPic.

ME: Any tips for CEOs on Twitter?

SARA: Be honest and admit your mistakes!

A great interview and a great community manager and social media marketing girl to keep your eyes on. Sara is rocking it for boloco and boloco is definitely a company to use as a role model when it comes to customer service and consumer engagement via social media such as Twitter.

Note: this post was originally written for oneforty, which was acquired by Hubspot. 

How to: Find a Job Using Social Media

Tired of using search engines and massive jobs sites to find a job? Wishing you could find great job opportunities a little easier? Join the club! I have been utilizing social media tools for job searching quite often lately because they help bring possible jobs right to your fingertips rather than searching for hours.

A. Google Reader and Google Alerts: Not only is this tool great for subscribing to blogs, but it can help job seekers subscribe to job listing by keyword and position. This way you aren’t doing a Google search everyday for the same type of position, but the search findings are delivered to your Reader or your inbox. Convenient, easy and free.

B. Five ways that Twitter can help:

(1) Utilize the Twitter reader Tweetdeck to keep tabs on job postings via job related search terms.

(2) TwitJobSearch: A search engine that aggregates job listings and posts on Twitter.

(3) There are specific people who post about jobs frequently. Find those in your neck of the woods that do so, follow them, create a conversation so you can build a relationship and seek help from them when needed.

(4) Follow the brands and places of business that you hope to work for. Engage with them, so you have a basis to show your deep interest before, during, after you have applied to work there.

(5) Twitter Advanced Search: A great way to search on the platform you already utilize and dig deeper into the job postings that are on Twitter in the past few days. You can do so easily by using hashtags (keywords that people add to their Tweets), search terms, etc. Also helpful to make sure you click “contains links” when deciding on your search, because job postings are more helpful when they click a link to the website posting. Want to know more…check out the quick 3 min video below by Mashable.


Note: Please remember to not spam when looking for a job on Twitter. It’s clutter and people won’t “listen” to you.

C. Three ways to optimize your LinkedIn Profile and Search:

(1) Use the 120 character headline to your disposal. Say something unique and catchy for when prospective employers check out your background. Nowadays your LinkedInprofile is virtual resume and pertinent to be updated frequently.

(2) Use the 3 “hot links” to your benefit. If you have a blog, link to it! Have a great profile on another platform? Link to it! Show your personal brand off!

(3) Use the job search and when you find a job that interests you, find someone in yourLinkedIn network that could recommend you. Network, network, network — the people you know are your biggest asset.

D. Facebook App – BranchOut: Like the appeal of people you know being able to recommend you? BranchOut is awesome for this. Although I am not a fan of usingFacebook apps often, this one is pretty handy.When you search for a job and click on a position you may be interested in — BranchOut shows who you know that can recommend you to the job. How much easier can it get? Dig it!

Two other items to consider…

E. Email Signature: Use WiseStamp to add your links from other social platforms in order for people to find you more easily. Emailing with a HR person at your possible future job? Now they can see how to link to your blog, website, LinkedIn (and more) at the click of a button via your email. Very convenient!

F. Blogging: Are you looking into a specific niche/industry? It could be helpful to start a blog on the topics of interest. Therefore, when the hiring manager takes a look at your background and Googles you (which they will do), and sees your blog, he/she will realize you are not just knowledgeable about this industry, but passionate about it too. It is important to manage your online presence and having a blog is a great way to demonstrate your expertise on the content. You can become an individual not only worth hiring, but a must hire.

As always, if you have other tools that you utilize to make job searching easier, please feel free to share. I, as well as my fellow readers would love to learn more tips and tools. And in the meantime, check out my Toolkit for your convenience.

Note: this post was originally written for oneforty, which was acquired by Hubspot. 



Lead Generation Made Simpler

Creating lead generation is essential to all B2B and B2C companies and can be very time consuming! However, there are some simple and easy-to-use tools for doing so that can hopefully cut down some of that time. Want to know the best part? You’re probably already using some of these tools! But now lets discuss how to use them effectively for lead generation.

Twitter: First and foremost, Twitter itself is a great asset for lead generation. Consumers and companies are both on Twitter for many purposes – whether it be to build their brand, create contacts and followers, increase engagement and promotion, and/or all of the above. First make sure your Twitter account is set up, you are utilizing it regularly, and your blog or web address is in the bio (whichever you use more for lead generation). What is needed to best utilize Twitter effectively: time and effort. It is a free social media platform, and it kicks butt at being in touch with the target market you are hoping to reach.

Need help on finding your target market on Twitter? Look at the next 5 tools below!

Twitter Search: the first place to start out is normally Twitter Search which is a part of your Twitter Account. I recommend going beyond the basic search options and utilizing the advanced search option in order to get more precise and relevant results to your specific company. Using advanced you can focus on people, places, dates, attitudes, etc. The places option may be key for companies looking for leads in a particular area, and people option may also be helpful when looking for people an “influencer” has mentioned.

Follower Wonk: A simple free tool that allows you search keywords in Twitter Bios in order to filter out individuals/companies you may or may not want to follow for lead generation purposes. You can search for individuals based on a specific keyword or you may use locations/names and/or filter out those who have a certain amount of followers (ability to find the influencers). In addition, this tool allows you to compare up to 3 Twitter folks and compare their stats, who follows them, their activity, and their unique versus shared followers. Interesting capability of this tool in order to see how a certain individual or company can be useful for lead generation or not.

Creating lead generation is essential to all B2B and B2C companies and can be very time consuming! However, there are some simple and easy-to-use tools for doing so that can hopefully cut down some of that time. Want to know the best part? You’re probably already using some of these tools! But now lets discuss how to use them effectively for lead generation.

Tweep Search: A tool that allows you to search through bios of all the “tweeps” on Twitter with specific key words. In addition, when you find someone or a company that you find to be relevant – you can then limit the search to their followers and search through there specifically. Narrowing a search is always helpful as there are so many people on Twitter.

Twithawk: If you couldn’t tell by the name — this app is like a “hawk” — looking out for you and your target marketing on Twitter. Unlike the aforementioned tools, this one is a paid service, which allows the Twithawk team to find the best target market matches for you from your specified search terms. Example: “TwitHawkperiodically (at the frequency determined by you) find tweets that mentioned “I need coffee” by users that are actually, currently, located within 5 miles of Queens such as‘@cracksh0t I need a coffee or anything with caffeine NOW’ or ‘@loxly This is so boring, I need a coffee… my one true love’ Then, TwitHawk will grab the tweets, and pop them in a list for you to check over, and you’ll be notified that you’ve got new matches to check over.” In addition, the TwitHawk team and app can help you keep track of tweets sent, noise, link tracking, and Google Analytics.

Tweetdeck: This client can be used on your desktop or on the-go and allows you to organize your followers and filter Tweets in order to assist in lead generation. Set up a column for saved search terms and question phrases (whether related to a product item, your company, a competitor, etc). Then, you can monitor and interact with people who are talking about your industry in a more organized and simpler fashion.

Three other tools you won’t want to miss:

LinkedIn: This is not just a platform for networking – it is an awesome lead generation asset! How to utilize this to your benefit? A few simple things: (1) customize your page; (2) Connect to Twitter (3) Create answer feeds (4) create an industry group (5) follow your target market (possibly those you already found via Twitter?) and (6) Share curated and created content! As corny as it sounds – Get Linked!

Your Blog: This is the content you create and then distribute through your channels such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. It is a great asset to have in order to create lead generation, especially when people subscribe and give their email address to do so!

Facebook: Considering Facebook has more users than the population of some countries, it is definitely a tool you want to utilize to make connections, and hopefully convert those connections into leads. As with your Twitter page, LinkedInpage, and Blog – customize your Facebook to increase the amount of “likes” you may receive and engage those individuals to sign up for a newsletter or the blog you have (aka lead generation). In addition, when someone “likes” a page, others will see it, and may be prompted to do the same!

Recall that it takes time to build connections and more time to convert these connections and followers into leads. However, these tools can help decrease that time and make the time you spend on finding these connections (who will hopefully become leads) more effective.

You’ll never know how truly effective each tool is for your company until you experiment and play around with each of them. Enjoy!


How to Connect with your Current Customer on Social Media

NOTE : I started freelance blogging recently for oneforty and this was originally a post I did for their blog. This was my first for oneforty so please check it out here or on their blog and please feel free to share comments! :)

Whether you are a B2B or a B2C, connecting with your current customer is crucial. Those current customers are needed for consistent business and through word of mouth may lead to future customers as well. One loyal consumer who boasts about a company’s customer service reputation, can lead to their friends — whether on Facebook, Twitter, or in person — becoming aware of your company and possibly converting to customers as well (for more details on converting people to customers see: The Zen of Social Media Marketing by Shama Kabani).

So how do you connect with these current customers on the social platforms on which they reside, play, comment, tweet, and post? I created this Toolkit to guide your efforts.

Here’s the run-down:

Rapleaf: Want to know the most relevant criteria about your consumer? Rapleaf does this by providing your business with the Who (demographics, location), What (interests, lifestyles, brands they love), Where (online platforms), With Whom (friends), and Weight (their online influence). A tool to help your business improve its customer outreach accurately, easily and in real-time! As quoted by Stephanie Olsen from CNET: “Rapleaf is among a new generation of people search engines that take advantage of the troves of public data on the Net–much of which consumers happily post for public perusal on social-networking sites and personal blogs. The search engines trace a person’s digital tracks across these social networks, blogs, photo collections, news and e-commerce sites, to create a composite profile. Unlike Google, which might link to the same material over pages of search results or after trying different combinations of keywords, these sites attempt to “normalize” personal data so that it’s easily digested by the searcher on one page.”

Flowtown: Although under-going renovations, currently, Flowtown has received much praise for its “goldmine” of consumer information they are able to provide to business owners. Have emails of your current customers? Flowtown takes those emails and helps your business engage with each consumer. As in real life, engagement online is about the personal touch, and building each relationship as you would in real life, is key. Kelly Robertson from 6S Marketing raves on how Flowtown gave her the personal insight needed to reach out to specific users: “By targeting specific users with relevant content to one of the social networks we knew our readers were on, we obtained our highest ever open rate (67.1%) and click rate (31.5%). Both of which, were well over the industry averages (17.9% and 4.1% respectively).” Awesome!

NetProspex: Claim to be the key tool for B2Bs that want to communicate on a more personal level with their customers. This tool gives companies the ability to find the social profiles of their consumers and then leverage that information for their sales team to find the influencers among those customers. In addition, NetProspex lets companies buy or trade contacts to earn credits to find what the company needs from a vast user-contributed directory. According to, “Netpropex would appear to have come up with a dynamic and workable model that should ensure that its database continues to grow and improve over time.”

Klout: This app has 750 partners utilizing the data it is able to retrieve. Want to know the “reach” a customer has in their twitter network?  Klout is the go-to app to determine how valuable each customer is and how they can impact your brand with what they say, tweet, etc. Note: an initial score is given when you go to the site, but an actual score is emailed later after you sign up and further calculations have been done. Thus, this is a great tool that helps companies identify their most influential customers in the social space in order to engage effectively.

Zuberance: A “word of mouth marketing platform” that allows you to find the perfect brand advocates for your company. Then you are able to utilize those advocates as brand ambassadors and hopefully to the benefit of your company and brand. Although there have been some reviewers who do not believe in Zuberance, others seem more objective and give consumers/brands the chance to judge for themselves.

Tweetdeck: Want a tool to stay in great touch with your consumers? Tweetdeck allows you to connect with consumers on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other platforms via one simple application. Tweetdeck also lets you organize your consumers in a simplistic way in order to reach out to people in a consistent, relevant, and easy-to-use format. Worried about missing a chance to be connected? You can access this on your desktop, browser, smartphone, and iPad! Engage away!

Hootsuite: A great social media dashboard for multiple accounts, which allows you to engage, monitor, and track the effectiveness of messages. In addition it has WordPress integration, ability to schedule tweets, and manage followers with ease. Shoutmeloud calls it the “ultimate twitter web client.” A great tool, which allows companies to reach their customers from anywhere such as via smartphone or iPad, which is important for a small business owner who is constantly on “the-go” as well as those who travel often.

How do you know which app is best to utilize? Watch a demo. Try it out. Experience it for yourself and tell us what you think. Like it? Love it? Hate it? Share!