Every day we hear about another social media tool, whether it’s Filtrbox, Dopplr, Brightkite or Plurk. Makes your head spin, especially if you’re new to social media and trying to decide how to get involved. But in reality, what are thought leaders in social media really using – consistently and on a daily basis – when it comes to social media? In our quest at Sawmill Marketing Public Relations to share the practical, we offer the following:
During the “Social Media 101: Getting Started” conference sponsored by the Greater Baltimore Technology Council (GBTC) in Baltimore last week, members of one panel were asked that question. “During a typical day, what social media tools do you really use? What’s your favorite?” The simplicity might surprise you.
Geoff Livingston, keynote presenter and author of the social media primer Now is Gone, said he pays attention to Facebook (“because people communicate with me there”), uses Twitter consistently (says it’s the #4 referral source to his blog, The Buzz Bin) and checks out Spin Thicket, a compendium of “news for a spin-eat-spin world.” The self-described “DC-based flack” called LinkedIn “a waste of time, but good for recruiting,” and said he doesn’t bother with MySpace or MyRagan, the PR/communicators’ social network.
Panelist Yair Flicker, president and co-founder of SmartLogic Solutions, also mentioned Twitter and Facebook (“to scope out new employees”) and talked about LinkedIn as well, noting he uses it for business development and recruiting.
Finally, Sean Oakley of Congruent Media said he uses LinkedIn consistently, sometimes to pose a question and get a feel for what people are thinking in a particular category. He also sets up RSS feeds on certain terms and questions from LinkedIn so he doesn’t miss anything of interest. Oakley also said he’d be lost without social bookmarks manager del.icio.us, where he sends clients to check his bookmarks, and he also enjoys StumbleUpon, but more for personal use.
So there you have it, dozens and dozens of tools out there, but at least in the eyes of the panelists at a social media conference, when it comes to what they use day in and day out, it pretty much boils down to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.