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What the Tech: Use social media for your business? This app can help.

Published: Oct. 15, 2021 at 11:36 AM HST|Updated: Oct. 15, 2021 at 5:10 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - These days many people use social media not just for staying in touch but for promoting a business, side-hustle, or hobby.

It’s one of the most important ways for business owners to stay in front of customers and promote their work to potential customers and clients.

It takes a lot of work to tweet and post to Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and other channels. If you depend on social media for marketing or promoting, an app called Crowdfire can do some of the heavy lifting burdens from busy people.

Crowdfire is one of several social media assistant apps in the app store but it has a feature most don’t have: a newsfeed.

To use Crowdfire you’ll need to grant it access to any social media account you want to use. That gives the app permission to post on your behalf. Like other apps Buffer, Hootsuite and TweetDeck, Crowdfire allows you to schedule when you want the tweet or post to be delivered, but back to that in a moment.

The key feature (for me at least) is the newsfeed. You get the opportunity to select topics your followers and readers will be interested in. For someone promoting a marketing a bakery, for example, you might choose all of the topics regarding cooking and baking. The people who follow you on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest will see any of the posts you choose to share.

Once you choose those topics, the news feed will be filled with stories, articles, and videos being shared by reputable media companies. There is a share button on each article that you can tap to share with your followers.

For example, I was shown an article about the new iPhone 13. After tapping “share”, I was given the opportunity to edit the tweet where I added a couple of lines to give the tweet my “voice.”

After creating the tweet you can choose to allow Crowdfire to populate it with appropriate hashtags or add your own. This feature could be better. That tweet about the iPhone was populated with about 30 hashtags, some having nothing to do with tech or phones. It’s easy to delete them all or erase them one at a time. I recommend using your own hashtags.

Crowdfire will also schedule tweets and posts or let you send it right away. It’ll also offer to select the “Best Time” to send the tweet based, it says, on when your followers are most likely to see it.

Crowdfire can be used for free but if you’re serious about using social media as a business tool, you’ll want to splurge on the subscription which is $10 a month and allows you to do a few other things.

Paid subscribers can use RSS feeds within Crowdfire so you depend less on the included news feed. If you tend to find shareable content from a source, you can add that source’s RSS feed and it will show up in your feed and be easier to share. You’re still limited to sharing posts on all of your channels.

If you’re a power user who depends on social media as a big part of their marketing strategy, you might want to subscribe to the pro version which is $50 a month. That sounds like a lot, but it’s much cheaper than hiring a social media manager to do practically the same thing.

While Crowdfire is similar to the other social media managing apps, I give it the nod because of its news feed and the ease of finding and scheduling content your followers will want to see.

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