The TweetDeck app is dead—at least it will be soon.

The service, which Twitter bought in 2011, announced on its blog on Monday that it will discontinue its mobile and desktop versions, including the apps TweetDeck AIR, TweetDeck for Android, and TweetDeck for iPhone.

According to the TweetDeck blog, the apps will be removed from their respective stores in early May and will stop working shortly after that. The company also said it will discontinue support for its Facebook integration.

“To continue to offer a great product that addresses your unique needs, we’re going to focus our development efforts on our modern, Web-based versions of TweetDeck,” the company said on its blog.

TweetDeck emerged as one of the more popular and useful tools for monitoring and tracking conversations on Twitter. It was free, and it was useful. Recently, however, it’s become less popular with social media managers. TweetDeck was stuck in a middle ground—the average Twitter user doesn’t need a management tool, and brand managers tend to gravitate toward the more sophisticated tools.

However, if TweetDeck’s demise leaves you scrambling for a new social media management tool, here are a few of the top alternatives—they’re not free, but they do offer a host of services that go beyond most free monitoring tools:

Better for social media publishing: 

HootSuite. One of the most popular Twitter management tools, HootSuite enables you to manage multiple accounts across multiple social platforms. Last September, HootSuite acquired another top TweetDeck alternative, Seesmic.

Sprout Social. Here’s another popular management tool in which you can schedule posts and get snapshot metrics. It’s not free, nor as cheap as HootSuite, but it’s customizable in ways that HootSuite isn’t.

SpredFast. This tool markets itself to large brands and caters to them, while Sprout and HootSuite could be just as effective if you were using it for personal account management.

Better for social listening/monitoring: 

Radian6 (now called Salesforce Marketing Cloud). Clients are often comfortable when their agencies use Radian6. It’s relatively easy to use, and empowers companies to clearly understand their place in social.

Crimson Hexagon. Looking for in-depth sentiment metrics to help you determine your overall social strategy? This is absolutely your tool. The depth of information you can mine from Crimson Hexagon is truly awesome.

Sysomos. Although Sysomos is less sophisticated than Radian6 or Crimson Hexagon, it is easy to use for quick monitoring around your brand. It’s better as an everyday tool than the others

Source: PR Daily

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Social media is a great tool for your job search and career – after all, relationships are often the key to a new job opportunity. But with all of the advice about making these connections, you might be wondering, ‘How exactly do I approach potential employers on social media sites like Twitter and LinkedIn?’

Here’s what  several experts have to say about forging professional relationships online:

1. Pick The Right Target On Social Media: For any organization, there may be several active voices on social media. Focus your energy on building a single relationship with a single person. Look for a voice who is active and engaged with their audience. These are blog authors or tweeters who reply to comments. With this person, share regular feedback and relevant resources (without stalking them). Be patient. Real relationships take time. – Alan Carniol, Interview Success Formula

2. First, Be a Good Follower: Before approaching a potential employer on social media, follow them for a while to understand their approach and what they like to write about. Retweet their posts or mention them over a sustained period of time, weeks or months. Then, when you want to reach out, they’ll be more receptive to hearing from someone who has already expended capital promoting them.  – Dorie Clark, Author of Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future

3. Find Commonalities So You Can Say, ‘Oh You Went There Too?’: It’s all about the connections, finding the one thing you have in common with someone. Using LinkedIn as an example, find someone that works at the company you’re interested in that you have a connection with, could be someone you worked with, fellow alumni, or member of professional association. Use this connection to reach out and ask for help reaching the right person to talk with about opportunities.  – Paul Kostek, Air Direct Solutions

4. Strike Up a Conversation First: Don’t approach employers online by first saying, “Hey, can you get me a job at XYZ place?” Establish a rapport first, whether that means tweeting back and forth a conversation together or Instagramming a photo of one of their products and a clever way that you used it. – Heather Taylor, social media manager, MyCorporation.com

5. Job Seekers Should Use Social Media to Show Their Value: Social media is a great tool for job seekers to use when connecting with employers. The best way for job seekers to approach employers is to use social channels to show off their knowledge and value. Share an interesting article, start a thought-provoking discussion, or take part in an industry chat. Once initial contact has been made, job seekers can share their video resume or work portfolio to show employers what they can do. – Josh Tolan, Spark Hire

*Post Culled from CareerBliss.Com

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The war for talent” is a term coined by Steven Hankin of McKinsey & Company in 1997, following by a book written by Ed Michaels and Beth Axelrod in 2001. The term has since been adopted as a critical term in human resources.

By the war for talent, it refers to an increasingly competitive landscape for recruiting and retaining talented employees; it emphasises the importance of talent to the success of an organisation. Talent is the secret weapon in a knowledge-based economy, where strategic success depends upon creativity and innovation. In today’s increasingly competitive global marketplace, recruiting and retaining top talent is a strategic imperative. To stay competitive, leading employers are investing in new techniques to recruit and retain their top qualified professionals.

Attracting and retaining the right employees can make a significant impact on your organisation’s financial performance. Optimised organisations hire and develop talented employees – a process that starts at the beginning of the recruitment process. Employers are fighting a war for talent that continually challenges them to rethink recruitment tactics. Hence, in a bid to stay competitive in the talent market, organisations must device newer methods to make them win in the war for talent!

Traditional methods of attracting talents are already fading off with the emergence of ‘new methods’ – web 2.0, social media. The Internet age has brought with it online recruitment and now the social media age has birthed – social recruiting.

This is the age where employers are not limited to a local pool of talent but they can reach a global pool of talent in an effective and efficient way simply by the adoption of social media in their talent attraction strategy. These would help build in no small way a talent pipeline for deployment at the shortest time.

If your organisation is committed and hopes to win in the war for talent, a good place to start is the adoption social recruiting. In simple terms, social recruiting is the effective use of social media or networks by employers to attract, source, engage with and hire candidates. At best, social recruiting is to support the recruitment efforts of organisations and not completely replace it. As a result, it is important to understand how to best leverage social networking sites.

In order to make social recruiting effective and a strategic initiative to find and hire new employees, an organisation needs to adhere to the following best practices:

Read the remaining part of the post here…

Till next time, we are all work in progress 

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It’s actually simple, but it took some good and bad experiences to come to this conclusion. I want to assume that these steps are applicable globally, but they have only been tested in Africa, thus the article title. If you do apply outside Africa, and it works, do feel free to buzz me via email – nubikayode@otekbits.com or just tweet at @NubiKay.

I often hear people come to me saying, how do I get more Likes on my Facebook Page, or more people on my Facebook group, or even more friends and subscribers on my Facebook profile?

  1. Change your orientation: Go for Fans not Likes. Ones orientation is quite important when making an attempt to build an audience, or better yet, a community. You are dealing with people that translate to numbers and not the other way around. Remember it’s a ‘community’ of people who ‘like’ what you are offering – whether it is a product or service. So if you want to have a campaign to build a Facebook audience you want to sample it after any of these two:
    1. Join the Silicon Africa community on Facebook by liking our page
    2. Fan us on Facebook to get updates on all things Tech and African
  2. You will see that the first calls for the prospective fan to join a community of people with similar interest. It also shows how to do just that. The second also reaches out to a person that holds the identity of a fan, and states what a fan stands to gain. Also note that it’s preferable to use ‘short links’, i.e. on.fb.me/xyZ or the common bit.ly/siliconafricafb as it makes it easier to share, remember, and track for analytics.
    So, once again, think Fans and not Likes.
  3. Facebook Page And/Or Facebook Group: I try very hard to avoid the debate of either going with a Facebook Page or a Facebook Group, but when I am faced with the question of which to go with, I simply try to explain the features of both options and what Facebook recommends as regards these two products; and that’s what I am doing here too.Facebook Page: Pages are for businesses, organizations and brands to share their stories and connect with people via posting updates on a timeline which are pushed to news feeds of people who like your page. You can create and manage a Facebook Page from your personal account, and note that only the official representative of an organization, business, celebrity or band is permitted to create a Page.
    Source: www.bestwaywithwords.com
    Facebook Groups
    are the place for small group communication and for people to share their common interests and express their opinion. Groups allow people to come together around a common cause, issue or activity to organize, express objectives, discuss issues, post photos and share related content.
    Recommendation from Facebook:
    Know which to product best fits your purpose? Good. If not open both with the understanding you will need to manage both and not neglect one for the other.
    Best practices for both platforms include adding description, and making updates of mixed media including: photos, videos, text, quotes, polls, questions, etc. Also try to put up Facebook apps that apply to you. Last but not least is to get a Vanity URL (also known as Facebook Username) if you going with a Facebook page. You do need to have 25 Likes, and all you need to do is go to facebook.com/username and you can set your Vanity URL for your profile and any page you administrate – so instead of having something like facebook.com/pages/SiliconAfrica-01898892992, you have facebook.com/siliconafrica which is easier to share and remember.See this Facebook blog post for more.
    See you next week.
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Now the recent decision of NCC on the Mobile Number Portability is becoming very interesting as Airtel Nigeria releases their own advert in an attempt to reply MTN’s Saka, I don port o ad. See for yourself and drop your thoughts 

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Beautiful, just beautiful, this socialmeep.com x lookbookoutlet store amazing soft fabric dress is smooth stretch jersey and is floor length with an extreme thigh slit from mid-upper thigh to the floor. The Lattice lace top, overs a plunge v-neckline giving this dress the most beautiful and enchanting look ever. The lattice lace up dress is a bodycon fit, almost snug to the skin, combined with its long sleeves make this a sure crowd pleaser. Great for clubbing, dinner out and high end parties. This dress is designed for ultimate wear; it’s the new go to dress if you want to make people envious! The best part of this dress is it can be tossed in the machine after you wear it! The material Viscose and Elastane make this a unique fitting dress, showing all the right angles of your body. Glide along as you walk, combined with heels, light jewelry and a clutch to match you will knock everyone out!

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It’d be great if there were hard and fast rules for every business about the exact right style and content for Twitter. Now, of course, there are certainly some valuable general guidelines. But the needs of your audience and what they like to click-through or re-tweet can vary tremendously.

What if you created a personalized Twitter ‘style guide’ unique to your business? This can be an especially valuable resource if you have multiple people with access and permission to tweet for your company. But even if just one person holds the tweeting rights for your company, devising a style guide can be a valuable exercise for creating the right Twitter persona for your business.

If you are putting together a ‘style guide’ what topics should be covered? Here are some suggestions for broad areas to cover.

How often should you tweet?

Here is an example, picked at random. If you are, say, a roofing company should you tweet as much as a marketing consultant? Generally speaking, it can be assumed that followers demand for roofing related tweets will be less than tweets on how to be a better marketer. This doesn’t mean that every tweet from a roofing company has to be a tip about roofing or the latest special offer (see ‘content’ section below).

The overall point is to create a target number of tweets that makes sense for your business and then be accountable to it.

Content – Should you tell everyone how much butter you just put on your toast?

The answer to that is ‘no’ (unless you’re a big-time celebrity – they seem to get away with tweeting anything, no matter how trivial). But there are serious considerations here. Where should your business draw the line between some fun and personalizing engagement versus pointless irrelevance? A written out guide that defines what types of posts are truly interesting and what crosses the line into boring is important. Use concrete examples to reinforce the distinction.

And speaking of crossing the line…

Every Twitter style guide needs to have a “sensitivity” section – also known as the “look before you Tweet” rules. This could be a list of questions to ask before sending out a Tweet for all the world to see. Some examples:

  • If it is a humorous tweet, who is the ‘joke’ on?
  • Is a comment on politics always off limits (for many, but not all, businesses the answer is ‘yes’)?
  • Is the subject of the Tweet a subject that might hold deep emotional connections for some followers? If so, how will they interpret it?

Have an industry-specific section

Here’s hoping you already follow others in your industry to see what they are doing. Now take that a step further and add examples to your style guide of what draws the heaviest replies and re-tweets of businesses similar to yours. Without resorting to flat-out copying, use these tweets (and your own best tweets) as examples of the best styles. Certain patterns and templates will emerge and you can further refine this section.

What’s missing here? What else should businesses consider when creating a personalized Twitter style guide? Leave a comment and tell us.

Source: Social Media Today

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Remember those spam emails that used to annoy us? The ones that gave us the heads up that Facebook was going to ask us to pay and the only way to avoid it was to post some nonsensical message on our Wall? Yep, that’s the one Facebook felt obliged to debunk saying that it was free and would always be so. Well, they really are so last year.

Facebook, the world’s ‘favorite’ social network, these days seems intent on doing a couple of things exceedingly well: reneging on its promises and annoying the hell out of its membership.

Now on the face of it Facebook is not really doing anything that any other online business should not or would not do: it’s trying to use its substantial global membership to create several commercial income streams. But that’s as far as my understanding nature is prepared to go. The reason I’m not cutting the social network much slack is because when you get to that size and believe you have that much clout you need to also be able to understand that the only way to translate it into cold, hard cash is by remaining relevant.

Relevancy is turning out to be an online quantity that resides at the very heart of online monetization and the reason for that lies in the simple fact that by being relevant you also become able to best use that other incredibly important digital marketing quality: context.

Consider this simple example for a moment: You’re walking down the street looking for a hardware store in a new neighborhood. Suddenly, in front of you, you see a guy handing out leaflets touting hardware tools. Unable to believe the serendipity of this you grab one. Not only do you find that the store is near you but it also has a special offer on, limited to the very same day! You’re in luck. It would take an immediate act of God akin to the Earth opening up and swallowing you whole to stop you from traipsing down to that hardware store and giving them your cold, hard cash.

By appearing the moment it did, as if by magic, that particular ad not only made the hardware store relevant to what you were doing at that particular moment in time but its context was also spot on. You were actively looking to spend on hardware tools and it suddenly became imperative you did so, in order to take advantage of the offer.

Relevancy and context are frequently mistaken for targeting and personalization but they are not the same thing at all.

To prove it consider this example: You’re lounging down the pub shooting the wind with your besties. You’re right in the middle of some story about a party when in comes a guy with a bunch of leaflets. It’s the same hardware store with the very same tools and the very same offer as before. I am giving away no prizes for anyone guessing just how effective that kind of marketing really is.

Yet, that is the kind of marketing Facebook is betting its future on, at present.

The danger of that approach is that Facebook, that began life as the place to hangout on, is beginning to piss off its membership base sufficiently for them to look for alternatives. And the moment the membership base begins to dissipate, businesses and their advertising dollars will not be far behind.

Right now this is not yet happening in sufficient numbers to worry anyone. Given the built-in latency in online trends however the chances are that by the time it becomes apparent and Facebook responds, it’ll be too late. The world’s favorite social network will have truly become irrelevant.

by David Amerland for Social Media Today.

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Social recruiting has come of age in recruiting and it is changing the traditional ways of recruiting. Is your organization embracing social recruiting? Or as a job seeker do you plan to use social media to secure your next job?

Glassdoor recently polled users to learn more about the role of social media in the recruiting and retention process. The survey also looks at why employees leave a job and what perks are most attractive to candidates.

The findings reveal that employees’ perceive their company’s social media presence to be low – in fact 73% of employees say they are unaware or their employer does not promote their employment brand on social media. Shown below is an infographic that highlights additional survey findings.

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I am always asked the question, ‘How do you convert social media hypes to sales? How do you get a ROI on the funds, energy and time invested on social media? Is all this activity worth it for my business or products? By the amount of activities, companies and products available online now, it is clear that there are individuals and businesses that are already catching on this trend.

1.      START THE RELATIONSHIP

Before you start to ask your followers, fans or friends to patronize your services or products, ensure that you have a platform that already explains the exact nature of your business, product or service. You use this portal to explain the social attraction that your brand offers. You explain in simple language and with a series of broken down statements what you stand for in a manner that is relatable and attractive to your target audience. For instance, if you are a bank that is ready to start making relationships with an audience on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus you should be ready to tone down your corporate speak and interact with your

audience in the manner of one about to establish an interactive friendship. Ensure that you start this relationship. Be ready to start regular discussions and allow people to respond or react to them.

Remember: Social networking is a give and take relationship; also the giving comes before the taking.

2.      TEASE IT! THEN LINK IT

Often the easiest tactic to influencing behavior on any social media portal is perfecting your tease act. To be effective in converting hypes to sales, you have to understand how to bait your audience and hook them in with a narrative style that is irresistible. Take some time to study the most popular Twitter personalities in your area or around the world. Just like bloggers, they have perfected the art of the tease by understanding what their audience responds to and timing their posts, tweets and/or updates effectively. This ensures that their audience is hooked from the beginning to the end.

Remember: add links at the end that send the user directly to a portal where purchase or contact for purchase can be made.

3.      START A COUNT DOWN

One of the biggest mistakes one can make when launching a service or product on social media is to simply drop it without creating any anticipation. Everyone loves a countdown and this is especially true on social networking portals. Some of the most successful social media campaigns involve the use of an exciting countdown to the unveiling of a product, competition or service. A countdown best starts with information at least 2 weeks to the set date that notifies your audience or following that something is about to happen. From 12 hours to the set time, step up posts and updates and involve your followers directly to take part in the countdown which peaks upon the launch and maintains a steady peak after the launch. This creates anticipation in the audience and the perception of a major.

4.      COMPETITION

Competition is exciting and popular on social media portals. Take advantage of this. Launch one of your own that would have winners taking some of your products or services as prize. This also increases the popularity of your products or services from a psychological angle for the simple reason that people are competing for it. The secret to converting this to sales is to keep giving away information on how to buy or patronize your services intermittently.

5.      USE SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENCERS

You know them, you might not understand why they are popular but there are thousands, hundreds of thousands of people that take their word as law. Identify these individuals first, identify the audience they have and their interaction with them. This will help you understand first if they would fit the kind of product you have. After this study, contact is the next step. These individuals make money from social media hypes and it can be relatively affordable, and endorsement from them can make the difference in your campaign.

6.      CONTACT DETAILS

Ensure that you provide all the necessary information for anyone to follow. Use emails that would be specifically for social media traffic and phone numbers and other relevant contact detail so you can measure in numbers how much traffic exactly came in from social networks.

It is not possible to focus solely on social media as a place to sell your product or service; however it is a great way to get your name out there to all of your followers and potential new customers.

What do you think? Try some of these tactics yourself and share the results with us. If you also have methods that have worked for you, feel free to share!

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