Social Media Tools to Bolster Your Professional Social Media Presence

As a professional project manager, it is very helpful to have a social presence, whether you have a business or not. In fact, in today's work force, each professional is a sort of business, sometimes referred to as Me, Inc.

The problem and opportunity with social media is that it opens up a vast network of relationships, information , and possibilities - which can be very time and energy consuming! But there are tools than can help - if you can find the time to explore them! This post explores a few select tools to make social marketing easier for you as a professional.

Posting More Easily to Social Media Sites
Hootsuite (hootsuite.com) and Buffer (bufferapp.com) are among the more popular third party posting tools. They will post to Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites.

Hootsuite is a very robust package and is clearly targeted to large organizations. It has a very basic free personal use entry point, albeit with clearly limited capabilities. For example, you can only store up to three profiles, so you might be limited to, say, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. If that works for you, then no problem, but you may want to add more! There are three other potential deal stoppers on the free Hootsuite Personal Use plan: 1. You are limited to two RSS feeds, which could be significant if you want multiple feeds to bring info to you; 2. You can only schedule one message at a time; and 3. Hootsuite University, Hootsuite's social media educational materials, would only be accessible for a charge.

The Hootsuite Pro level option is targeted at businesses and starts at less than $10 per month. for that you get a great upgrade on several of the limited features from the Persualnl use plan. You would get a minimum of 50 social profiles, get unlimited RSS feeds, and can schedule up to 350 messages. In addition you can enable posting by up to 9 team members, but only one is included without an additional charge. Hootsuite University is also optional, as are a number of other services, so you may have additional up charges.

Buffer provides a free basic level which includes three accounts. It also includes an "Awesome" account, for Power Users. It looks like it is very worthwhile and transparent to sign up for the basic plan, then upgrade to Awesome if you like later for $10 per month. The cost of a business account is $50 per month, and I doubt if an individual professional would need that.

For posting, you have to remember that you are a professional - and not social media professional! You will probably prefer Buffer as its strength is its simplicity, and if you need to upgrade it is not too expensive. The Hootsuite plan could potentially add up with the options offered. Most of the features you would want come with the basic plan.

To learn more, there is a good article in the Charlotte Observer. See

Building your business: Social media tools you may not know about by Jennie Wong.