Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Social Media Update—Why I've Switched from Tweetdeck to Hootsuite

For the past couple of years I’ve been singing the praises of Tweetdeck, an ancillary program to help you organize your Twitter stream. Well no more, I’ve spent the past few weeks switching to Hootsuite and I’m MUCH happier.

Why? Well, unfortunately, nothing stays the same in the changing climate of Social Networking! I know that’s the single most frustrating aspect of Social Media, but it’s one we all have to expect and learn to work around.

Last year Tweetdeck was bought by Twitter. Initially I thought that might be a good thing. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Most of the things I liked about Tweetdeck have been eliminated and we’ve been left with a clunky program that’s mostly ineffective.

Luckily, Hootsuite is more than taking up the slack. Now, before you ask, Hootsuite does have a FREE option. That’s actually the account I’m using right now, although I do think I’ll be moving up to the lowest paid option before too long. But here’s what I get in the free account: 
  • 5 social profiles.
  • Basic analytics.
  • 2 RSS feeds.

Best of all, Hootsuite does most of the things Tweetdeck used to do. Here’s a short list of what I like about it. 
  • It’s easy to schedule Tweets and Facebook posts
  • You can copy and paste tweets into the update window with ease.
  • It has two options for URL shortening.
  • It keeps track of your @contacts to make tagging easier.
  • It has a GREAT get-acquainted video to help even the rawest beginner get started. 

Every morning I spend about thirty minutes scheduling my main Tweets and Facebook posts for the day. I usually line up at least 15-20 updates for the day. I try to schedule them evenly throughout the day so I can reach people in different time zones. Here are some of the things I try to include every day.
  • I search my inbox for interesting articles from my favorite social media sites.
  • I post updates from my regular writing related blogs, including My Book Therapy, the Blue Ridge Conference site, Novel Rocket and Chip MacGregor’s blog. There are many others, but these are some of my favorites.
  • I look to see which of my friends’ blogs have sent me an email update and I try to highlight those.
  • Most days I include something about my blog or books, but lately I haven’t Tweeted as much about myself. I haven’t really needed to. A lot of the people I interact with on Twitter are as diligent about posting info about others as I am.

During the day, while I’m working I check Hootsuite periodically to see who’s retweeted or mentioned me.
I do try to do an @reply to anyone who highlights something I’ve done. This accomplishes two things—it gives them a mention and it’s a public way to say thank you.

A lot of people ask me if my schedule has been beneficial? You better believe it! I’ve reached the magic 1000 follower mark on Twitter and I’ve been adding between 15 and 20 followers a day. And, I don’t spend much more than the 30 minutes every morning to schedule my Tweets and Facebook posts.

So I’m curious, how is Twitter working out for you? What are your frustrations and successes. Let’s learn from each other.

Don’t forget to join the conversation!


  1. Very interesting Edie! I'll have to check it out. Does Hootsuite have a mobile app as well? I've been trying to post 4-5 times a day. My Twitter count is continuing to grow (Not at 15-20 a day!) even though I'm not as consistent as you are :-). And since I took your advice and created lists, I'm not as frustrated when I try to look through my feeds. Thanks for staying on top of things for us!!

  2. I just looked into Hootsuite after reading Cindy King's article on Social Media Examiner yesterday. Glad to know you like it!

  3. Thanks for explaining all of this, Edie. I had it in mind to set up an account today, so that I can streamline my facebook and Twitter posts again. This is very helpful information, and I'll get right on that!

  4. Edie, I am not a social media techie but I plan to be! Presently I am taking baby steps. Thanks for the post. EB

  5. Thank you for this! At this point, I use twitter pretty minimally, only tweeting 1-2 times per day...and some of those are just RTs. I do hope to get on something like this someday, but since I work full time, it's pretty difficult to get on for 30 minutes in the morning. It definitely seems worth it, though...so many I'll look into it!

  6. Edie, as you know, I wasn't happy with my feeble attempt at Tweetdeck. Maybe this will leave a better taste in my mouth. I'm glad I have you to test the waters of all this stuff first! Thanks!

  7. Edie, my problem with FB/Twitter has been figuring out how to get my Twitter posts to go to my FB fan page instead of my personal page. Are you able to do this? Thanks!

  8. Thanks for the post. I haven't used either sites, but know that I should. I'll check out Hootsuite.

  9. Edie, Like you I was frustrated with the "new" Tweetdeck. I was able to solve this using my Mac's Time Machine app, going back and rescuing the "old" version of Tweetdeck. Still using it and loving it.
    Tried Hootsuite, but it was more complicated than I wanted. Guess I'm like the farmer who wouldn't subscribe to the Farmer's Almanac because he "wasn't farming as good as he knew how to now."
    Thanks for sharing.

  10. very good post, have been fan of hootsuite since i started using it this summer, love the scheduling feature.... i have found TweetAdder to be VERY VERY helpful in growing a targeted following/follower base, i would highly recommend spending the $50 for this product, @AndyHolloman

  11. Social Media moves to fast for my brain, I'm afraid.

    I've joined Hootsuite but not had the time to figure it all out. I loved your article it clarified a few things for me. Now it does not feel so overwhelming and scary.

    I am on my way to visit that tutorial video! Thanks.

  12. Great post, Edie. I started using Hootsuite about a week ago and it's fantastic.

    Next, I recommend you change you upgrade your comment section to Disqus. Like you, I use blogspot for my daily stories, however, the comments section pales compared to what more than half a billion people are using to connect.

    Here's the link: disqus.com/

  13. HootSuite does have a mobile platform and it's awesome! Clean, smooth and easy. I don't use HootSuite as much as I should on my laptop, but it's the only thing I use on my phone. So much easier to navigate than Facebook for Android!

    I was using TweetDeck doing stuff for Tiff Colter and it got to the point where it wasn't posting half the stuff I scheduled, so I switched her to HootSuite too.

  14. Saw this on FB and am glad I did. I've been undecided about which way to go, Tweetdeck or Hootsuite and now that's decided for me. I'd like to see the tutorial so how do I find it and how do I download Hootsuite? Can anyone tell me? I'll also ask my peeps. Thanks, Clarbojahn.

  15. Lynn, Susan and Alycia, thanks for commenting and I'm glad i was able to help!
    EB and Vonda, thanks for chiming in!
    Lindsay, with Hootsuite you can schedule several days worth of posts ahead. If I were you, I'd play around and find out what fits your life and schedule!
    Rachelle, thank you for stopping by! I had the issue of where my tweets were posting on Facebook until Hootsuite (honestly it sounds like I work for them - I promise I don't!) I can post updates to my personal profile or my author page. It really helps to be able to focus the information on where my audience is. The free version only allows 5 social media profiles, but with your twitter account and 2 facebook pages that's only 3 profiles. You should be good.
    History Writer - I'm so glad you dropped by and left a comment
    Blessings All - E

  16. Richard, I'm so glad you dropped by. It's so funny, my husband just finished another one of your books and was talking about how much he liked them last night! I had reservations about moving to hootsuite, but the video was very helpful and it took me less than a day to get used to to it.
    Andy, thanks for stopping by! I've wondered about Tweetadder, but hadn't gotten a personal recommendation until now. Thanks for the suggestion!
    Blessings All - E

  17. Hmmm, good thoughts, Edie. I'll have to play... Do you have any posts about hashtags and figuring out which are the best to use? I'm not sure how to know what the most popular ones are. Just curious. Thanks! :)

  18. Diane, trust me - social media moves too fast for all of us! Once you accept the fact that you're always going to feel behind the curve it's easier. Just stick with those things that work for you. Don't try to do it all!
    Michael, thanks for the heads up about disqus! I visited their homepage and can't wait to get up and running with it. I appreciate you stopping by!
    Rachel, thanks for stopping by! I'm still working with the mobile app and haven't used it much - I appreciate your recommendation.
    Clarbojahn, thanks for stopping by! I just discovered your blog today because I follow Stacy Jensen and she's your guest blogger today. I just love social media and all the connections! You download hootsuite at www.hootsuite.com and when you sign up it gives you lots of options. The free tutorial video is the first video under their hootsuite university tab. Be sure to stop by again if you have any question!
    Blessings All - E

  19. Lindsay, stay tuned for next Tuesday. You just provided the topic for that post! I'll cover how to find the best hashtags for your topic.
    Blessings - E

  20. Ok Edie, I'll add Hootsuite to the "to do" list. *sigh* Thanks for the directions on how to get it. I'm sure I'll be back with questions.

  21. Edie, you give such "easy-to-understand" steps/helps! I haven't braved the twitter yet,....sigh...I know I need to. I'll come back for all your hints.