When we talk about “tools” for social media and community management, it’s easy to let the mind wander to workflow platforms like SproutSocial, conversation-based monitors like Crimson Hexagon, or something like Simply Measured that promises a bit of both. But being equipped with the right tools only scratches the surface.
Just like a modern journalist is challenged to capture images, video, etc. that might complement their copy, social media strategists need to be able to create content that is well-rounded with rich media resources. Having the right mix of tech makes that job a little easier (especially if you’re lucky to have great talent to help polish up and produce what you’ve put together).
- Portable Battery: it might seem like a given, but having a way to charge your phone or tablet when you’re not close to an outlet is essential. It’s also another reason to go mobile versus toting around your laptop. I love Anker, and they have so many different models (varying charging capacities) at very accessible price points.
- Tablet Keyboard: typos make me wince, but even I’m not perfect. I hate typing on my phone, but rejoice when I’m on my iPad and using a keyboard that offers me the same composition control that I feel like I have with a laptop. Logitech has a wide variety of options, all of which connect via Bluetooth.
- Gimbal: if you’ve graduated to the point of content creation where you face-palm when thinking the times you captured video vertically, you need a gimbal. I demoed the DJI Osmo years ago at CES, and am currently lusting after their mobile version. At just under $200, it helps stabilize video, and uses your smartphone camera and a proprietary app. Better yet? It integrates with YouTube and Facebook so you can produce live broadcasts. Rumors are swirling that the same functionality will soon be available for Instagram and its live feature.
- Universal Cords (and a way to organize them): most tech comes with dedicated cables to charge them. To safeguard against human error, pick up some extra cords that are compatible with your gear. Amazon Basics is a great place to start, and where I personally load up on chargers, cables and converters.
- PopSockets: I know, I know. This feels very “millennial,” but get a grip. Literally. Holding a phone all day to make sure you get the perfect shot for Instagram isn’t really ergonomic. PopSockets attach to your phone case and offer a little bit of relief, and honestly, a lot of control and stability for still images. They come in so many different designs, including simple black ones that blend in well with a phone case. You can even design your own.