Facebook – This is for you (whether you like it or not, it works). Setup a page for your business, post something, and invite all your friends.
Twitter – Yes, you should use this too. Utilize the automation tools below to make this super-easy. Be sure to tweet links to your blog and facebook page, and don’t forget to use #hashtags!
Google+ – You probably already have an account! If you have a google login, which includes YouTube or a Google My Business account (and you want that too), login to any of these and go to Google+ to setup your page and add some content to it. A post that says “checkout my facebook page” or twitter profile, etc. is totally acceptable as long as you’ve posted something there.
YouTube – When would NOW be a great time to create a short video about something to do with your niche? Upload it to YouTube, include a description and links to your blog and other accounts above, and watch the traffic roll in! Remember, when you post to YouTube, you’re automatically posting to Google+.
LinkedIn – This is the modern resume. If you are a professional, or a business selling to other businesses, you need to have a LinkedIn profile. You can have a business page just like any other social platform, and you should use it. If you do not need to network with professionals and don’t sell to other businesses (usually far from where you are), then don’t worry about this one. This is not the place to peddle your goods.
Instagram – If you’ve got photos or videos, this is the place for you! You can get funny on this one, just keep your audience in mind. Facebook owns Instagram, so be sure to share your content to your Facebook page.
Pinterest – If you’re into food, fashion, or DIY, this is the place for you! START HERE, then share your pins to all of your accounts above. Traffic will bounce between them and create a frenzy of Pins and Interest. Get it? Pinterest…
Oh yes, now how shall we manage all this craziness without wasting away our precious lives???
SocialOomph – This is the best automation tool I know of for Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. It allows you to pre-schedule and randomize various posts/tweets at either precise times, or via randomized drip campaigns. The free version is great, or upgrade to Pro for a reasonable fee.
HootSuite – Great tool for managing Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instragram, Google+, and more, all from one dashboard! The pro version allows for bulk-scheduled posts, analytics, and more.
TweetDeck – Free and easy to manage from your laptop or tablet. This is my favorite Twitter-specific tool. Yes, the others do similar things, but this one is one is great to work with if you want to easily engage Twitter.
SproutSocial – This is a higher-end tool that major brands are using to monitor keywords, #hashtags, and to watch the conversation being had about their brand. You can do the same on an individual scale, or have your entire team use it to collaborate on managing your online presence. They offer a 30-day free trial if you want to play with it for a while…
Zapier – Unimaginably, this was forgotten in the presentation! I suppose this is a more advanced tool for an intro class, but some of you are ready for it now. Since you are looking for a way to tie ALL of your social media accounts together and only have to use one action to post to them all, this is your golden ticket. Zapier is a free (up to a certain number of “zaps” per month) tool that uses custom apps to get different platforms talking to each other. Check it out, and automate everyone (way beyond social media).
Jetpack – If you have a WordPress.org site, install this plugin package and try out the “Publicize” plugin and others to automatically send your blog posts to all of your social accounts at once. It handles a lot of stuff! If it still doesn’t do everything you need, check out the WordPress Plugins Directory and type in your favorite social media platform to see what gadgetry already exists for your free (usually) use.
TwitterFeed – A super-simple free tool to connect your blog (or anyone’s blog or a newsfeed) to your social media accounts. This is how I stream news feeds to my Twitter account around the clock. It can feed to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn (personal profile or company page), and more.
Bit.ly – Free link shortening service and tracking/analytics tool. It tells you how well every one of your social media account and even specific posts are performing. Pretty handy stuff.
Shopify – For those of you who sell things online, you need a storefront! Then you want to use all of this magic social media juju to send loads of people to your store to buy things. Shopify is the fast and easiest (and inexpensive) way to set up a really nice online store in very little time, for very little money (there is a free trial), and start making sales right away. They event include a merchant account in the deal so you can start taking credit cards from day one. For those of you Pinners, this is a phenomenal integration. You can even put your store inventory in a tab on your Facebook page with a free app and people can shop right on Facebook.
TweetAdder – This is one of my secret weapons for building a HUGE following on Twitter! Use it for following and unfollowing lots of people on Twitter or when you need to do some bulk/fast account management. You can process hundreds of follows and unfollows in a few minutes, and sort your Twitter account to see who has unfollowed you, who is not following back, who you should follow based on who they are, where they are, what they are talking about, etc. This is a powerful tool to build a community on Twitter that cares about your message. I highly recommend it! And yes, there is a free trial.
+PostAds – This is Google’s supercharger for Google+. It converts your Google+ posts into ads that are spread through the Google+ network and you pay for it only when people directly engage your brand.
Fiverr – This is the site where you can get anything done for $5. I share this because you should know about it. Both, because it might be competing with you, and because you might find it useful to get quality work done for a low price. If you are offering services online, you might consider joining the party to expand awareness of your product or service.
RoboForm – How on earth are you going to manage all the passwords for these social media accounts, online tools, and everything else? This is how! I use this tool to manage over a hundred highly secure (difficult and hack-proof) logins to various sites, and they are all stored under one single password on my computer (or a thumb drive, tablet, cloud, etc.). This is a huge time-saver because you can just click on the site you want and the software will log you in automatically. No more typing your login info! It also fills forms for you and more if you want it to…
Klout – New and Improved! The new Klout not only helps you track the progress of your online influence, but if you don’t know what to say just yet, it will give you relevant content based on your niche and allow you to easily schedule posts across most your networks. Lots of them! Klout now covers Twitter, Facebook, Instragram, Google+, LinkedIn, FourSquare, YouTube, Tumblr, Blogger, Flickr, and more. And, it’s free!
HubSpot – This is one of the post powerful online tools in the world for online marketing. This service will scan and critique your websites, online marketing, social media, and help you optimize and improve all of it. This is for serious marketers and isn’t “cheap”, but the 30-day free trial and ongoing free tips are gold! Everyone should use the free trial to at least get an initial assessment of your online presence and feedback on how to improve it.
AdSense – This is more about monetizing your online presence and not so much about social media. It’s a google product though, so linking up AdSense with your YouTube account, blog, Google+ page, and more, will start paying you for the content you create, both in writing and on video. A little paycheck from Google every now and then sure is handy when you want to offset the cost of any premium services listed above. See the ads at the top and bottom of this page? That’s AdSense! We’ll talk more about this in upcoming Hive workshops about making money online.
Phew! Yes, there are more tools, but that should keep you plenty busy for a while. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t be. Just pick somewhere to start and take the first step. There is no rush.
Ask questions and make comments below. If you know something we don’t, add it here so we can share it with everyone! We’ll keep this dialogue going and plan more workshops, support forums, etc., based on your requests and feedback.