quick tips to minimize your time and maximize your exposure

what the heart wants...
Creative Commons License photo credit: filtran

I was having a conversation with a friend via Facebook and he jokingly remarked that I was beginning to appear everywhere on his account: his friend feed, his side advertisements, everywhere! He ended by asking if he should expect to see my face in popups next.

The conversation with my friend was lighthearted but it got it me thinking: How could I continue to leverage the viral nature of Facebook and other social media sites, without getting swamped with the numerous time-consuming tasks often related to them? Below are a couple of tips that help me do just that.

1.  Work smarter, not harder (aggregate and propagate)

Social networking can take up a lot of your time. For every website you join, you’re essentially adding another inbox to your already-bloated list of email accounts. Just trying to keep up with all of the different conversations can be a challenge in itself.

The key to not getting bogged down is working smarter, not harder. How do we go about doing this in social media (without hiring a VA)? By using services that aggregate (pull in) and propagate (push out) information.


Aggregators are services that basically pull in actions and info from multiple sources and organizes it in one central location. Whether your friend adds a favorite photo on Flickr, changes their status on Facebook, or retweets a great post on Twitter, you’ll know about it — without having to check each site individually.

Popular social aggregators include:

FriendFeed - http://www.friendfeed.com

SocialThing - http://www.socialthing.com

And I should note that Facebook’s News Feed serves a similar purpose. If you’re a heavy Facebook user, you should definitely take advantage of it. You can even filter the feed according to your friend groups (e.g. to keep up with your clients)


Propagators are simply websites that “push” out information instead of pull it in. Many of these services allow you to update your social network statuses and micro-blogs without having to login to each one individually. Talk about a time-saver! Below are a few of the more popular propagators available now:

Ping.fm - http://ping.fm

hellotxt - http://hellotxt.com

2. Keep your finger on the pulse and your ear to the streets

It’s important to know what’s being said about you, your niche, and your brand. But you don’t want to go searching for these relevant conversations one by one. That’s time consuming and a poor use of resources. Regardless, it’s still critically important to monitor these things because information spreads fast in today’s interconnected online world. Reputation Management 101 should include a serious effort on your part to keep an eye on your public image and your brand.

That said, there are a few services you should be using to keep track of these events so you can mitigate the situation by responding immediately and with a remedy. Not to mention, it also fulfills one of the original goals stated earlier in this post: to appear “everywhere” without doing the back breaking work that would ordinarily be required to monitor these discussions.

Use these services below to aid in your customer service and reputation management efforts:

Google Alerts - http://www.google.com/alerts

Get Satisfaction - http://getsatisfaction.com

Setup Google Alerts to notify you whenever an article, blog post, et cetera is made that mentions something relevant like your name or company. If you find something positive, leave a nice comment in response. If you find something negative, quickly act to correct the situation

The other site, Get Satisfaction, is a service that allows business owners, help desk staff, service reps, and so on, to interact with people who have posted complaints online.

Their Overheard service “eavesdrops” across the Net and updates with relevant conversations about your product/service. Here’s Comcast’s Overheard section showing a list of Twitter updates about the company: http://getsatisfaction.com/comcast/overheard.

Here’s a quote that I recently came across from someone who had an issue with the feed sharing service, Toluu:

I got my invite and went to log in. Whenever I can, I use my OpenID because I’m tired of entering passwords in Passpack. However, OpenID failed. I have a low threshold for fails of that variety, so I Tweeted that it was a bad first impression. Within about two seconds, I had a response from @calebelston asking me what issue I had, could I describe it, etc. Best part is that I sent him the info, as well as the issues I was having importing my complete OPML file to Toluu, and then forgot about it. You know how it gets when you are trying 85 apps at a time. Then I get an email from him: Hey, we’ve been working on this issue. Would you be willing to try it again and see if it works? I was floored that he remembered to come back and contact me.

As you can see, incorporating these tools and tips we just discussed into your marketing efforts and customer service strategy could pay huge dividends. Are there any other websites and/or services that you highly recommend too?

Leave a comment below and let us know how you’re using them.


UPDATE: Special thanks to Shinil for pointing out Tweetbeep as another tool that you can use to track what’s being said about you and/or your brand on Twitter. Think of it as Google Alerts for Twitter. Thanks again to Shinil for pointing this out. Check him out at .

UPDATE: Thanks to Dali Burgado for mentioning Tweetlater (). This is a valuable resource for Twitter users. Its two prominent features are its ability to send automatic follow-up messages to new followers (which is great for making connections and building your community) and scheduled tweets that go out at a time you designate. Thanks again, Dali. Visit Dali’s Success Factor blog at http://daliburgado.com when you get a chance (”now” is a good time ;-) )

UPDATE: Iceman Baldy commented about using MyBlogLog and its great, low-maintenance, community building features (I’m all about low-maintenance!). Thanks for the comment, Iceman Baldy. Check him out at his blog: http://www.icemanbaldy.com.

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#1 Life Coach Karen on 10.01.08 at 5:05 am

Very useful and simple presentation! I’m kinda’ new to social networking so this is invaluable info for me. Thanks for keeping us up-to-date … and working smarter.

#2 Shinil on 10.01.08 at 7:27 am

Thanks again Deontee for the awesome blogpost. Really insightful. One site I would like to recommend is / which is like Google alerts for Twitter. And yes, you have got a thumbs up on StumbleUpon!

Best Wishes,
@shinils on Twitter -

#3 deontée on 10.01.08 at 10:40 am

@Life Coach Karen

Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment. And writing these posts are my pleasure. Feel free to contact me if there’s anything I can do to help you with social networking. It’d be my pleasure.


As always, my friend, thanks for the comment and stumble. And another thanks for mentioning Tweetbeep!

#4 Dali Burgado on 10.01.08 at 11:23 am

Hey Deontee,
Great stuff.

How are you enjoying Social Thing vs. Friend Feed? I’m not on there yet.

I just got on to - the thing I love best about it - besides you being able to schedule tweets - is that it allows you to create a custom “welcome” message to your new Twitter followers.

Anything to leverage time you know I’m all about it!

Thanks for the great tips.

Dali Burgado

Last blog post from Dali Burgado:

#5 Dee Stewart on 10.01.08 at 2:24 pm

Great info, Deon.

I use socialthing and ping.fm also. I use Google alerts not just for me but to track my clients online presence, since I’m in PR. Didn’t know why Tweetlater was important. I will definitely try that out.

Last blog post from Dee Stewart:

#6 Iceman Baldy on 10.01.08 at 7:31 pm

Great post–I completely agree that if you want to make the most of your relationships online, you need to use tools like those you’ve suggested to multiply your efforts. MyBlogLog is also a great social aggregator and you benefit from its low-maintenance community features which also help to build traffic.
Iceman Baldy

Last blog post from Iceman Baldy:

#7 deontée on 10.01.08 at 8:11 pm


I’m enjoying them both, but I’d have to give my nod to FriendFeed. SocialThing is a great tool but they have a long hill to climb since FF has been synonymous with social aggregators for so long. But, I’d definitely sign up at both. You never know who’s gonna find you online and how.


Thanks for letting us know how you use Google Alerts. I’m sure working in the PR arena has allowed you to use that service in ways most of us have never even thought of.

@Iceman Baldy

Thanks for the comment, man! I appreciate the MyBlogLog tip. Community building is definitely where it’s at!

#8 David B Katague on 10.14.08 at 4:58 pm

Excellent info for new bloggers like me. Have a good day!

#9 deontée on 10.18.08 at 4:01 pm

@David B Katague

Thanks from the bottom for taking the time to stop by and comment. Hope to see you around more.


#10 snipe on 10.23.08 at 10:59 am

Also, LoudTwitter (www.loudtwitter.com) is a handy tool for posting a daily digest of tweets to your LiveJournal or other blog.

Last blog post from snipe:

#11 Jack Bendit on 01.08.09 at 3:43 pm

Hey man, I really appreciate this info. Good stuff, for sure. Things have a tendency to get complicated, and it’s always nice to find ways of simplifying.

Take care, Jack

#12 Catherine on 01.30.09 at 12:16 am

Great info for blogging newbie. Keep up the work. I will check back for sure………

Last blog post from Catherine:

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