Every morning, bakery owner Maria Baugh wakes up, checks her e-mail inbox and, without fail, spots one from a familiar sender.
Click. The daily e-mail from Postling.com shows the comments and conversations about her New York City bakery that have appeared on all of her company’s social-media accounts.
Postling, which this week launched its new “streams” feature, allows Baugh and time-strapped small business owners to manage their social-media accounts – Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, LinkedIn and Tumblr, among others – all in one place.
“It benefits my business because it saves me time and helps organize our use of (social media). And I can easily decide which posts I want to respond to,” said Baugh, who co-owns the bakery, called Butter Lane, and supervises the company’s social media efforts.
Social media -management tools often market themselves to a broad audience. Postling taps into a much smaller demographic.
“Every feature we create is with the small business in mind, rather than large corporations,” Postling’s vice president of customers, Alexis Lamster, told BusinessNewsDaily. “The Postling team is driven by the belief that empowering small businesses will help local communities thrive in a world of big brands.”
Unlike other online-management tools such as TweetDeck and HootSuite that aggregate Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and some blog accounts,
Postling does that but also lets users connect with more blogs, picture-sharing tool Flickr, URL condenser Bit.ly, RSS feeds and review sites Yelp and CitySearch.
Businesses can respond to all of their comments, share photos, create new updates and blog entries and schedule posts in advance.
“In our time speaking with small business owners, they seem completely exasperated with the whole concept of social media,” Lamster said. “Most don't understand it, some get it but don't know how or what to do with it and others simply don't have the time for it.
“We help make social media easy and fast so people can get back to either running their business or living their lives.”
Optometrist Justin Bazan is one of those busy bees. Bazan operates Park Slope Eye office in Brooklyn, N.Y., uses Postling to schedule updates in advance rather than all at once. Postling “allows me to use the saved time for other important things.”
This week, Postling rolled out its “streams” feature. Businesses now can see updates from their customers, followers and friends. In the past, business would see only updates in which they were mentioned.
Users also can “cross-point” posts they see, which means if someone posts something on Twitter they can re-post it on Facebook or Tumblr, and vice versa, she added.
Businesses can try a two-week free trial. After the trial ends, users can upgrade to premium service for $24.99 a month or continue with the free features.
Free features include posting, responding and scheduling. The premium service includes the tracking, reviews and RSS features.
“The fact of the matter is that people are talking about your business online, all the time, and will continue to do so whether or not you join in the conversation,” Lamster said. “However, if you do join the conversation and begin to recognize what your community of customers are saying, you have the power to guide the discussion.”
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Reach BusinessNewsDaily staff writer Brian Anthony Hernandez at Bhernandez@TechMediaNetwork.com. Follow him on Twitter (http://twitter.com/BAHjournalist) and become his friend on Facebook (BAH Journalist) to interact or stay updated on news about small businesses.