The physical Rolodex is a thing of the past for today’s social journalist.
The social media savvy reporter now uses a Google doc to keep track of sources’ email addresses and cell phone numbers while also putting together Twitter lists and Facebook groups for more instantaneous contact. Some may also use LinkedIn.
That’s a lot of information to keep track of and it can feel overwhelming at times.
Enter Mingly, a plug-in that collects, or aggregates, all your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Gmail contacts and neatly puts them into one simple dashboard.
“We set out to create Mingly with one goal in mind: develop a product that makes it easy to stay in touch and informed about the important relationships in our life, no matter how we’re connected,” Dana Byerlee, Mingly’s business development and marketing manager, wrote in a recent blog post.
While you can access Mingly from your web browser it really comes in handy when you download it as a browser extension (right now, only available for Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox) and access the app right from your Gmail account.
From the Gmail dashboard, not only can you compose regular emails but you can also send messages from Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. All without leaving Gmail. Your contacts from these networks are filtered into one big, virtual address book, which you can organize into groups and filter by location or how you know them (friend, family, colleague, etc.).
Still relatively new, Mingly only came out of initial beta last November but has grown to 10,000 users, according to the post by Byerlee. Users can pick a free version or a upgrade to Mingly Unlimited for about $10 a month. You can see the differences between the two plans here.
Creating an account is simple as is linking it to your various social networks. Right now, those only include Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Gmail. My one complaint is that it took a fairly long time for my contacts to all be added and recognized in Gmail.
If you want to develop strong relationships with your sources but are always forgetting key details about them, Mingly could be a lifesaver. It’s also great if you are the type to always check your Gmail but forget to respond to Facebook or Twitter messages.
Would you use this type of service to help organize your sources? If not, what do you use to stay connected with contacts?