This weeks cool tool could prove to be a bit controversial. Post Planner is an application for Facebook that helps you think of things to post. One of the biggest time sucks when managing Facebook pages can be deciding what to post today. I use several methods to combat this, I have a schedule and a list of content, I bookmark interesting links, I write down ideas that pop into my head during the day and I’m always looking for something new and creative. However, like everyone else I get brain freeze from time to time and this is when I could see Post Planner coming in handy.
Once you authorise the app to Facebook (and it looks for a lot of permissions) a click on the light bulb icon will throw up a number of suggestions for posts. Unfortunately the free version teases you with question suggestions but if you try and activate them you are asked to sign up for the free trial. However when you click through to sign up for the trial it looks for credit card details to activate it. This really put me off, maybe I’m an old fuddy duddy but I’m still not ready to trust my credit card to a company I stumbled on through a Google search that has pretty comprehensive access to my Facebook profile. Sacrificing the Facebook data and my credit card info at the same time was a step further than I was willing to go. If you sign up for the free trial there’s lots more cool stuff you can have access to, including ‘fill the blank’ updates ‘ask for likes’ updates and posting to your Facebook page rather than just your profile, they have a huge database of ideas for you to tap into, all of them aimed at getting more interaction. Tempting as it is I’m still not ready to hand them my credit card info.
For free and without the trial there is one useful feature and that’s the ability to schedule updates. Yes there are tools such as Hootusite that allow me to do this as well but the beauty of doing it through Post Planner is that you don’t need to leave Facebook. As a free user I can only schedule updates to my personal profile page but I can see that pairing the posting ideas with a scheduling function could yield great results, particularly if you want to target users in a different timezone.
I’d love to try the full functioning app or to hear from anyone who has done the trial. What do you think? Would a Facebook app with access to your profile information scare you off giving credit card information or am I being overly cautious?