Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hootsuite Compared to Buffer - What I Found

Ok, so I chose to name Hootsuite first in my title when comparing to Buffer because I started off a few months ago using Hootsuite and thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread...not that i've even been eating much bread lately on this low carb lifestyle, but that's an entirely different conversation.

A month ago I started to use Buffer because some of my new client accounts were already set up to use this social media tool so i had to switch gears and learn this tool in a hurry in order to co-manage numerous social media platforms on their behalf. The first few days were hectic, learning the pre-existing schedules of these new accounts on top of learning to use Buffer and I must admit i was a little biased. Remember Hootsuite and sliced bread and all:)

My work method to learn anything new has always been to jump in with both feet to get a feel for what is available to me and then google video's and/or articles to learn more about specific features when i'm ready to ask questions: How do I do this?  What does this do?' Why do i want to do that? And most importantly, Can I do this?

By day 3 of using Buffer I was feeling much calmer and decided to purchase the most equivalent plan to that of my Hootsuite account and within hours I must say i was loving Buffer.  I remember saying, "I'm using Buffer and I'm feeling my groove."

I set up the social platforms for my more active clients on my new Buffer account and decided I would use Buffer instead of Hootsuite and this is where the true comparison of features came into play.

Please note my use of Buffer and Hootsuite to date is on a computer, not on a mobile device.

Also, the features i mention are those which i use consistently in my workday and are not the extent to which either of these social media tools offer.

Lastly, for any examples and opinions i express in this article that may be arguable, I invite you to share your comments for others to learn and try so we can all benefit as much as possible by this wonderful technology that is available to us:)

Here's the list of varied features that I've come across while using Hootsuite and Buffer:

1. Twitter Retweets - Hootsuite allows you to actually schedule your RT's so they don't have to go out all at the same time and bombard your followers.  Buffer doesn't allow you to view your Twitter feed at all so there is no option from this social tool to RT anything.

2. Twitter multiple images in posts - Hootsuite allows you to attach multiple images in a single tweet, which is of benefit for some clients. Buffer only allows you to attach a single image. (Upcoming article - Grouping Images - When it is beneficial & not)

3. Facebook multiple images in posts - Hootsuite allows you to attach multiple images in a single post for Facebook but the flaw is that it posts each image as a single post to Facebook with the same text for each. (not ideal for what I'm doing). Buffer only allows you to attach a single image.

4. Twitter image size - I rarely get a message from Hootsuite to say my image is too large when uploading photo's i have snapped with my Cannon.  As most of my images are 3+ MB's Buffer does not allow me to upload these, giving me an error message that 3 MB is the max size. (Upcoming article - How i reduce my JPeg images)

5. Reviewing all scheduled posts - Hootsuite allows you to select as many platforms for as many client accounts as you want to view what has been scheduled to post.  (This feature is handy when I'm scheduling posts to several social platforms on behalf of a client.  For example a client has a personal LinkedIn account, a LinkedIn Company page, a personal Facebook account & Facebook page and a Twitter account.  I can schedule posts on all of these platforms for a week or a month and if i want to review what i've scheduled on each i can view all at once on one page.)  Buffer only allows you to view scheduled posts on a single platform at one time.

6.  Content Curation feeds - Hootsuite allows you to delete/remove any content suggestions from your feed(s) that you do not want to use because you don't feel they are relevant.  Buffer doesn't, so this means you have to keep scrolling through all of the undesirable content suggestions to get to new ones.

7. Using extensions for sharing posts - Hootsuite and Buffer both offer extensions which means you can click on the icon at the top right of your computer screen (once you opt into this & I recommend you do. Don't be afraid!) when you want to share anything on the internet. From what i see both Hootsuite & Buffer extension features offer the same but I have a personal preference for Buffer because it appears to have a cleaner look. (Upcoming article - How I use Buffer extensions for my own clients social posts)

8. Repeating posts - Buffer allows you to 're-buffer' a post that has already gone live so you don't have to re-type the post if you choose to share it more than once.  This is also handy because you can see what was said in your previous post and can change wording where needed.  Hootsuite does not have this feature so if you want to re-post a post, you have to copy and paste it each time.  (Hootsuite requires you to re-upload an image for a Twitter post each time you re-post in order for the image to be viewed)

9. Page loading - I find that Buffer takes much longer to load the pages, especially for the Analytics feature to view the posts that have been sent, which can take 5 minutes or more and frequently goes to an error page asking you to 're-load' the page.  Hootsuite is instant almost always when going from page to page.

10. Social Media Platforms - To date I find both Buffer and Hootsuite offer the option to post to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Google+.  Buffer also offers the option to post to Pinterest.  Hootsuite offers the option to 'view only' Instagram.  I've used all successfully.

11. Customer Service Support - At this point I have used the Customer Service Support for both social media tools a few times and to date find the response time to be a little quicker from Hootsuite, and the knowledge or perhaps the communication to be very slightly better from Hootsuite.

12. Training - One the things i love from any program, tool, software, etc. is the FREE TRAINING:) Hootsuite offered a 30 minute free telephone training session where we were both able to access my account and go through features together.  My 30 minutes went well beyond and I was not rushed or told my time was up.  Also, the person I spoke with during my training is 'my contact' for any ongoing questions, which I have used a few times.  When I asked Buffer if they offer any training, the answer was 'no'.

13.  Google articles and helpful tips from each company - Both Hootsuite & Buffer offer clear tips through their help pages for any questions you may have and both social media tools seem to have numerous articles available on the internet written by excellent users.  (Too many to mention, but all you have to do is type in what you're looking for and be ready to read and try for yourself).

Overall, I'm finding that i'm using Buffer for most of my clients now with the exception of the RT feature, which i'm continuing to use for every client.  Having said that, clients that i have where I'm sharing multiple images in a single post are still being scheduled to post from Hootsuite for Twitter posts only.

For those clients where I'm sharing multiple images for Facebook, I'm back to using the Facebook scheduling feature.
Oh, to have one source that will do it all for me! :)

I hope my findings are helpful and please remember that I welcome all comments so that i too can learn, grow and make new connections:)

Have a wonderful day!


Saturday, June 20, 2015

Happy Father's Day from Kawartha Lakes Ontario!

It’s only when you grow up and step back from him–or leave him for your own home–it’s only then that you can measure his greatness and fully appreciate it. Margaret Truman



Happy Father's Day


HM Coordinator is a Social Media Services & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
serving clients throughout Ontario

media@hmcoordinator.com

705-879-2689


Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter, LinkedIn

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Don't Waste Precious Time On Social Sites That Aren't Bringing You Rewards

Do you know which social media sites are driving traffic to your website, and more importantly, to your business?

We've met so many people who are spending valuable time posting to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and many more social sites, who are not monitoring whether or not their activity is making a difference.

It's important to watch for growth on your sites, know which posts are making the most impact, as well as the days and times of day that are most beneficial when posting.

Time is money! And, if you're not watching for these things; checking the analytics of your activity, you may as well throw your money into the wind.

We've all heard the term analytics but many social media users either aren't sure exactly what to use them for or how to use them and we want to help.

For starters, there are free tools out there that can gather analytics from single or multiple online sites (social sites) that you are using, such as SumAll, Cyfe & Google Analytics just to name a few.

Check out the above tools for yourself and if you need some help:

HM Coordinator can help set you up to observe the effort you are putting into posting on social media and teach you how. Or, like many businesses, you may want us to do it for you and that's ok too.

It's much cheaper for you to have us point out what's working for you and what isn't when it comes to social media than it is to continue to spend priceless time into a non-rewarding action.

Email us to see how we can help media@hmcoordinator.com

HM Coordinator is a Social Media Services & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
serving clients throughout Ontario


media@hmcoordinator.com

705-879-2689


Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter





Friday, February 13, 2015

Even A Crappy Business Can Benefit From Social Media!

Yes It's true!  Social Media is for everyone: Businesses Good & Bad.

Why?  Because with statistics showing repeatedly that our general population puts more value into what the online community is saying about anything and anyone, there's no better place to be and to be found!




Data from a recent BDC report shows:

  • 47% of Canadian consumers conduct a broad online search prior to purchase
  • 42% consult customer review sites before buying search online to find the best place to buy
  • 45% of those that searched for product info online still purchased via traditional retail.

And, According to a study performed by OTX Research 
  • about 2/3 of customers use the information they find through social media to influence their buying decisions
  • 67% of customers are likely to pass this information on to others
  • over 60% trust information they find through social media more than traditional advertisements

With these numbers, I say even a crappy business can benefit from social media because this is your chance. Your avenue to speak. And I don't mean to speak just with words, other than to say "Thanks for bringing this to our attention! We are listening and learning from your valuable input.  Please stay tuned." 

First of all, if you haven't heard, let me share with you that if you are a crappy business, even one that is not on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or any other social site, it is highly likely that people are talking about you and your business on these sites. And yes, this is probably hurting your reputation dramatically, which translates into your bottom line...SALES!

Being able to identify what others are saying about you and your business online is the perfect opportunity to respond. And not just by responding to a direct comment with a direct comment. I mean this is your chance to speak by listening, learning and improving!

Listen to why people are making comments:
  1. Is it the products you sell? Are they of poor quality, prices too high, not enough variety or sizes, etc.?
  2. Is it your staff?  Are they rude? Does their personality fit with that of your customers? Are they knowledgeable about your products, service & business? Are they inattentive or too pushy? Are they unprofessional, have poor hygiene or wear inappropriate attire?
  3. Is your place of business too crowded, uncleanly, or inaccessible to those with mobility issues?
  4. Have you handled customer complaints poorly? Have you provided proper training to your staff on dealing with customer complaints or product issues?
  5. Are your current or ex-employees saying things about you and your business online?
It is wonderful that wonderful AND non-wonderful comments are being made about any or all of these things about you and/or your business online!!  Why? Because new goals and paths have just been handed to you for improvement. And if you have read this far than it is my assumption that you are a business who wants to remain in business:)

Learn what you can do to remedy any issues.  (We love brainstorming with a group of close and not-so-close individuals by bringing them into the environment to explore for a bit, then we ask specific questions to get a good discussion going)  We include customers, suppliers, friends or people off the street).

Improve by implementing your changes and then splash it all over social media and if possible, directly to the person or people that helped you get to the point of improvement...the complainers.

But don't stop there!  With our world becoming much smaller due to online technology, use social media as a consistent monitor for your business to remain in existence and for growth and success for many years to come

We've all heard that there is no such thing as bad feedback because it helps us to further develop. And in this case, now that social media has come along, we are very fortunate that we don't have to spend tons of time digging to find out how we can improve in order to stay in business. It's all at our fingertips with online tools available for us to find out what people are saying about us all, so let's use them together:)  Together we stand:)

HM Coordinator is a Social Media Services & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
serving clients throughout Ontario



705-879-2689


Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter


Monday, January 19, 2015

Why Realtors Need To Be Using Social Media

According to a December 29th Publication by Metro News "More people are living alone today than at any other point in history, and the single-person household is now the fastest-growing category in Canada’s real estate market."

“We’re seeing more single women entering into the housing market, as income levels, changing demographics and lifestyle patterns shift purchasing habits,” Marcia Moffat, head of home equity financing at RBC, said in a release.

“A lot of my customers are women because, and I don’t mean to generalize, they tend to have stronger applications because they are showing less debt, better savings,” said Toronto-based broker Jake Abramowicz

But if you're in the Real Estate biz you already knew that so we're here to share these statistics with you:
  • 2 out of 3 Canadians use social media in one form or another (85% are 18 or older)

  • More than 10 million Canadians use Twitter; Men: 49% VS Women: 51% AND remember woman are more socially engaged which means they tend to share more often than men
  • More than 19 million Canadians use Facebook (over half of the Canadian population); Men 46% VS Women 54% AND Women are 18% more likely than men to follow a brand on Facebook
  • More than 3.8 million Canadians use Pinterest; 2.5 million of them are women
  • More than 5 million Canadians use Instagram and although the age is teen through 20's, this is one of the fastest growing platforms for popularity AND is one of the largest platforms for people sharing content.

  • YouTube reaches more adults aged 18-34 than any cable network; almost 50/50 when it comes to Women and Men.  WATCH THIS! Canada Online Video Trends

So, you can see why, if you are a real estate agent, broker or brokerage it makes sense to be using Social Media.  You owe it to your sellers!

HM Coordinator can help you determine which social media platforms you should be on as well as what and when to post to be sure your audience connects with you time after time.  We can set you up, manage it for you or provide the training you need to offer a compelling social media presence.

Remember:  The cost is low and the learning curve is manageable, but it does take more than marketing knowledge to utilize these channels effectively  You’ll need someone who also has a creative flair, writing talent, adaptability, and the social skills to professionally interact with your audience online.

(We can also offer exclusivity packages within certain geographical regions...just ask)

References: canadian'sinternet.com; wendymcclelland.com; strategicobjectives.com

HM Coordinator is a Social Media Services & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
serving clients throughout Ontario


media@hmcoordinator.com

705-879-2689


Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter

Monday, January 5, 2015

January 2015; Winter Sweetness

 


January is the month of fresh air, fresh ideas and a time of 're's'.

  • Renew your energy: Shrug your shoulders while outdoors on a brisk day whether sunshine or cloud, smile, take a breath and move on.
  • Revive old articles, posts & newsletters: Re-read and allow them to fertilize new ideas.
  • Reclaim your creative confidence: Step out of your comfort zone & do something that makes you uncomfortable; Stop what you're doing, look at the clouds & draw what you see. Don't take the time to colour inside the lines for once.
  • Re-establish relationships with those you've let slip away: Call, face-time, or skype instead of texting or emailing; actually listen and respond after you've asked how they are.
  • Remember, innovation isn't always about a plan, it's about having ideas and flying by the seat of your pants once in awhile.




HM Coordinator is a Social Media Services & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
serving clients throughout Ontario

We are currently accepting new clients; if you would like to meet with us to discuss how we can help your brand or small businesses grow substantially through the power of social media, contact us at

media@hmcoordinator.com

705-879-2689


Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter

Friday, December 19, 2014

Wishing Everyone a Safe & Happy Holiday!



HM Coordinator is a Social Media Management & Training business
in the City of Kawartha Lakes
servicing clients throughout Ontario

We are currently accepting new social media clients, so if you would like to procure our services, contact us at

media@hmcoordinator.com


705-879-2689



Also find us on FacebookPinterestTwitter