It’s not just for Twitter anymore
I‘d like to make a confession. I’ve been using HootSuite 2.0 for about 2 months now and I’m completely addicted to it. We all have certain online tools we use that are essential to each day we work online. So you might imagine my frustration Monday night when I tried to login to HootSuite and received the dreaded “…is currently unavailable due to scheduled maintenance”.
I then attempted what most of us would do in this situation. I tried refreshing the page over and over hoping they would get tired of my persistence and just let me in. As you might expect, that didn’t work. Much to my chagrin, the site was unavailable at least until I went to bed.
Being unable to access my daily fix of Twitter stats, preset tag searches, scheduled tweets, etc was short lived. I woke up on Tuesday morning to discover that HootSuite wasn’t just making some unnoticeable, lame update to their service. There were significant changes and in this case, change was good.
Not surprisingly, the first change HootSuite made was the addition of Twitter list management (see screenshot #1). While this feature is in Beta, the integration was a logical step. Part of what makes HootSuite so effective is that they make it unnecessary to log in to Twitter directly while providing a much more robust interface. By including Twitter lists, they are keeping consistent with that mission.
Perhaps more importantly, the other change HootSuite implemented was the ability to add your Facebook and LinkedIn accounts to the system. I know what you’re probably thinking. What about the Facebook newsfeed? They’ve got that covered too.
This latest addition now means you can update and manage your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Ping.fm accounts right from the HootSuite interface. If you are a power user of these services, this can save you a tremendous amount of time. It’s important to note that HootSuite is not the only application offering this type of functionality, but in my opinion their interface is cleaner and easier to use than the alternatives.
I’ve been preaching for a long time that most businesses (small and large) need to develop a social media strategy and engage their customers. As more useful social media services emerge, there is a growing need for good 3rd party applications that can manage your accounts on multiple networks. These latest changes to HootSuite confirm that they are one of several leaders in this space.