The world of social media is scary and every service seems like it’s out to get you or trick you, basically a virtual version of Australia (for our Australian readers pretend I just said New Zealand or whatever country scares you most). 

If you don’t have the newest or best technology for the job you’ll quickly fall behind, or worse your Millennial coworkers will make fun of you for being an outdated Grampa. The only problem is how do you keep up to date when every single day new apps, extensions and services crawl out of the woodwork like Social Media Cockroaches (which is also a good job description for what I do). Well, here is a list of 5 pieces of tech that no one should be caught dead without.

Tweet This: What social media apps and extensions should you be using? Find out:

1. Boomerang

The Australia metaphor from before is starting to make a little more sense, huh? Boomerang is Instagram’s latest toy that allows people to up their Instagram game by creating gifs, or rather gif like videos. Instagram has been supporting video files for quite some time and this might make Boomerang seem a bit redundant but the point of difference comes from how limiting Boomerang is.

What it is: Boomerang gives you a meaty 1 or 2 seconds of video that you can record, it then loops that forever, after you shoot the second long video you can publish it on your Instagram just like you would any picture.

Why you need it: Some of you are already thinking “Why would I want a more limiting app” well the answer is because creating a video that plays then reverses itself is really hard and Boomerang does that for you without any effort on your part. Also, 99% of you out there are not funny and if you tried to produce a funny 6-second long Instagram video you would fail, 1 to 2 seconds of someone doing a wacky thing is much easier for the comedically impaired. Instagram laid out all the little differences in a less insulting manner on their site.

What it costs: The app is free and if your company has an Instagram presence there is no reason not to grab it and start experimenting if your company doesn’t have an Instagram presence then get with the times from 4 years ago and make one. Cripes!

2. RiteTag

Hashtags can turn a good tweet into a great one. They keep us informed about what people are talking about in the moment, and they can do so much more than letting everyone know what thing from the past you are thinking about on any particular Thursday or letting you find food porn easily on Instagram.

What it does: While how many hashtags to use where and when varies wildly, needing guides and articles all its own, the browser extension RiteTag makes sure you always know what Hashtags are the most popular at any given moment.

Why you need it: Essentially what RiteTag does is compares millions of hashtags on a few key factors, unique tweets per hour, reach per hour, longevity, etc and color coats them in your browser in real time. Their site also lets you research hashtags using the same criteria in advance, so your social team always knows what hashtags are best.

What it costs: The only bummer is that eventually you have to pay if you want the browser extension to still work, personally I just keep the site open and research hashtags in real time, ain’t no browser extension gonna keep me down!

Tweet This: How can you stay up to date with the most relevant hashtags in your industry? Start using THIS tool!

3. SnapChat

So if you have a teenage or early twenties child or ARE a teenage or early twenties child you’ve no doubt heard of SnapChat or seen their spooky ghost icon, but it hasn’t really taken off in the B2B space just yet, and maybe for good reason.

What it does: SnapChat lets you take videos or pictures that people can see for 10 seconds before they disappear forever. You can put videos or pictures on your “story” basically a personal log of photos and videos for your profile or send them out to people you are friends with on SnapChat. On the outside it sounds like an incredibly limiting, and in a way it is vidoes and pictures are short and there is no ability to link to your website in a snap, yet there is more to this than meets the eye.

Why you need it: SnapChat has been growing in popularity among US Millennials since it’s inception and last year became more popular than Twitter with that demo putting it behind only Facebook and Instagram, that means that if utilized properly your SnapChat presence can do more to reach potential Millennial employees than Twitter, a social media outlet you’d never question using, so why not use SnapChat to reach out? SnapChat is also incredibly effective at marketing to specific geographical locations. If you still doubt SnapChat’s uses in recruiting and Marketing just ask Uber’s higher ups what they think of the fast growing app.

What it costs: Free, except for the time it takes you to have your little sister show you how to add words and stuff and explain why NO, you don’t need to show everyone your life. BUT HOW WILL THEY KNOW MY LIFE???

4. Twiangulate

If you are a small business then chances are you are trying to use bigger businesses in your field as a model for your social media strategy. There is nothing wrong with that, as long as they don’t suck at social media, I mean they are big for a reason, right? One of the most important things when it comes to Twitter is who you follow and who follows you. If you follow the right people you’ll never want for people to engage with, and if the right people follow you then your visibility will skyrocket. So naturally you want to follow the same people that your competition does but going through their follower list and comparing it to yours is a lengthy process that not even the newest of interns should be saddled with.

What it does: Well that is where Twiangulate comes in, the website compares any two twitter accounts and gives you information on the most influential followers of both and tells you which ones both accounts follow.

Why you need it: Instead of sifting through 10K plus followers just plug both and watch as the most important followers of each appear before your eyes. It also compares the reach of two accounts and lets you search for keywords among the followers of an account, useful for poaching their clients and engagement. Their site has a bunch of other tools too but none as impressive as Twiangulate, only downside is that it can take a bit long to compare when the accounts in question have a bunch of followers.

What it costs: Freezle! And it could actually SAVE you time.

5. Periscope

We’ve talked about Periscope a LOT here at RBM, and for good reason, it’s only the biggest engagement app of the year and is only getting bigger.

What it does: Basically, Periscope allows you to livestream your life. If your life is boring then that stinks but since it integrated with Twitter and there are lots of applications for its use, Persicope is exploding at conferences, live events and even employer branding settings.

Why you need it: Its ability to let you interact with your audience is pretty unprecedented, as cool as Facebook’s ever-expanding video functions and Instagram’s video hosting are they aren’t live and in real time. That key point is what makes Periscope so exciting, If you are periscoping out some killer social media marketing advice someone can ask you a question right then and there and you can respond to it, the epitome of online social interaction. You can show off products, give advice, build company culture and branding. The possibilities are truly endless, and best of all Periscope tells your Twitter followers when you are live so you don’t have to rebuild a whole new audience. For people that prefer Meerkat to Periscope just reread this paragraph and replace Periscope with Meerkat and omit the thing about telling your twitter followers (see why Periscope is better now?)

What it costs: The loss of your privacy, dignity, et al.

In the wilds of Australia you’ll need an elephant gun, canteen and a silly hat to survive, and even then you’ll probably die some horrible poison related death, luckily to survive in the social media jungle you just need these tools above. Well actually you need these tools and about 20 other ones, but these ones are some of the most important! Now that you are prepared go out and have a social media adventure!

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