I love all of this free goings-on on the Internet these days. You can try most any software for free, for a limited time – and there are a lot that stay free, providing you accept limited access to the features.

Over the next few posts, I’m going to share with you some of the free services I use regularly for business.

Today – Hootsuite and Buffer App, two Twitter apps that will make me cry if they ever go away.



Hootsuite, The Hard-Ass

 

 

 

Personally, I think someone screwed up.

There’s no way that the people at Hoosuite WANTED to give away all that functionality FOR FREE.

Nope. Someone fucked-up, someone got fired.

It’s the only thing that makes any sense, because Hootsuite is AMAZING. And it’s FREE.

Here’s all the awesome free stuff that Hootsuite does:

  • Add pretty much unlimited social networks… (I don’t actually know if it’s unlimited – but it’s A LOT). Such as….
  • multiple Twitter profiles
  • Facebook profiles AND pages
  • LinkedIn
  • Tumblr… others that I don’t use. AND you can post and interact with all of them from Hootsuite. Wow.
  • Add “streams” to organize lists and groups and stuff you’re searching.

You can create a:

  • home feed
  • sent
  • mentions
  • direct messages
  • inbox and
  • outbox “streams” to view all the tweets coming down the pipe separately.
  • You can import all the lists you’ve created on Twitter and view your follows that way.
  • You can create search term streams, or key word streams to keep track of it all.
  • Hootsuite allows 7 streams across, but you can add as many tabbed pages of streams as you want. It’s really limitless.

 

Here’s a screenshot of my set up:

Hootsuite can also:

  • Schedule tweets in their publisher section.

I’d waffled between Hootsuite and Tweetdeck for awhile… but Tweetdeck didn’t have the schedule tweets functionality that I really wanted. (they may have it now – I stopped caring what Tweetdeck was doing when I decided on Hootsuite)

I create all my standard posts 2 months in advance; blog posts, videos, podcasts, images… most all of the ‘foundation’ stuff is organized, planned and created 2 months in advance.

I wanted to be able to schedule all that to publish on a timely basis and Hootsuite has that.

This is my publisher page and everything that’s all cued up and ready to go:

You can schedule the day, time, links and images and determine what social networks Hootsuite will publish to. It’ll also give you free ow.ly click stats. It’s pretty ballsy.
That’s why Hootsuite is the Hard Ass. 



Buffer App, The Hippie

 

 

Buffer’s been around for over a year, but I noticed it on Twitter a few weeks ago and checked it out.

Essentially, the idea is that Buffer is a tweet scheduler – you determine when and to what networks you want your tweets to publish and Buffer will shoot them out at those times until the ‘buffer’ is empty. (Get it… huh? Huh? Buffer… get it?). Right.

The free service only allows 2 networks to be added, and a buffer of 20 tweets (10 per network). The paid service seemed a bit pricey to me ($10) for 50 tweets and unlimited social networks… so once again, free rules.

Here’s my schedule all ready to go with both my Twitter and my Facebook hooked-up:

 

And here’s the scheduler page so you can see how it’s all set up:

 

There’s a wee applet to put on your bookmarks bar that’ll you can click to add links to your Buffer as you wing your way about teh interwebz.

I use it a bit differently… (though I’m sure it’s nothing ground-breaking).



I Have a Conversation… (derp)

I use Buffer very simply… and to good effect. I talk about a subject that I’m thinking about at any particular time (mostly art or art related). I schedule small tips or observations or encouragements about art and let them tweet out over a couple days.

They’ve been some of the most commented upon and retweeted of anything I’ve ever published. It’s fun for me to sit and reflect for awhile on a topic and then throw out my ideas for others to share (or ignore, you know, whatever). I enjoy a dialogue, so I don’t hesitate to post polarizing ideas.

The method of broadcasting is one that I really enjoy… it’s soft and a bit hippie and it’s really simple to set up the schedule times, plug-in my thoughts and let it go.

 

What social platforms do you like to use? Why do you think they resonate with you?  




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