Oct 3 2010
This article presumes that you’re already familiar with Seesmic Desktop 2 (SD2) and how it’s used as a desktop software client to manage your Twitter, Facebook and other social media accounts.
Bit.ly is one of the most popular URL / link shortening services and it’s used to convert very long web addresses (such as http://www.majumdar.org/fashion/poll-my-next-haircut-short-medium-or-long-hair-sondage-ma-prochaine-coupe-de-cheveux-courte-moyenne-longue/ into http://bit.ly/cLCxff) This is convenient when using services such as Twitter that limit status messages to 140 characters.
I generally use TweetDeck for Windows, so my apologies if there are any minor inaccuracies.
First off, you don’t need to have a bit.ly account to use it with Seesmic – to shorten a link you simply click on the link button underneath your status message, type or paste the long URL and then hit the Insert button. Voila, your long link will be shortened. See the following screenshot for details:
Once you have signed up for your bit.ly account you’ll want to integrate it with your Seesmic setup. Here’s how.
First click on the options gear button link at the bottom left – see screenshot:
Then click on the bit.ly plugin settings link – screenshot:
and this is the screen where you need to enter your bit.ly credentials (Username and API key) which you can get from the bit.ly website – screenshot:
Click save and voilà! Not only will you be able to shorten links using bit.ly in Seesmic, but when you log in to your bit.ly account you’ll be able to get interesting analytics with usage statistics and more – screenshot of some of my bit.ly 30 day stats for one account I manage:
It’s a subject for another article, but the analytics information can be quite powerful to assess the reach and performance of your content & shortened links – depending, of course, how you use it. You can drill down to see stats for individual shortened links and much more.
Feel free to leave comments or questions below!