For a site based around very brief bursts of text, the number of applications and tools out there for Twitter is incredible! Here’s a run-down of some of our favourite Twitter applications and how they can help you (and your business) get more out of your tweets.
Tweetdeck & HootSuite
Most of the time, most of Twitter’s users are not actually on Twitter.com. Similarly to how you can set up your business email through Outlook or Gmail, using third party platforms to manage your Twitter account(s) is very popular. Tweetdeck and HootSuite are two of the most popular options for this. They’ll allow you to manage multiple accounts, save searches, schedule updates (it’s ok to put your social media on autopilot for a while!), and even combine your Twitter accounts with other social media, like Facebook. HootSuite is a little more advanced than Tweetdeck and offers built-in analytics. There’s a paid version as well as a free version, but for most users the free version will be sufficient.
Klout looks at your Twitter account and gives you a ranking. On a scale of 1 to 100, just how influential is what you tweet? Klout is considered to the be the industry standard for ranking your social media presence. Aside from giving you a general score and some statistics, it also tells you who you are influenced by on Twitter, and more importantly, who you are influencing! This is a great tool for identifying fans of your tweets (and prospective clients) that you might not have known about.
If you’re a fan of charts, Tweetstats is going to be your new favourite website. Just enter your Twitter name and in a moment’s time they’ll produce colourful charts detailing when you tweet and who you interact with the most. Check out the word cloud option that creates a visual of the terms you tweet about most.
This is a fantastic resource for monitoring your social media. Did you lose followers? Gain a dozen? Not only will it give you a full report with easy-to-use charts, it’ll also email if you anything noteworthy changes – like you’ve just won the Twitter lottery and something you posted was retweeted 100 times more than what’s normal for you. Even better? Your first account with TwentyFeet is 100% free, and you can add additional accounts (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Bit.ly, etc.) for less than $3 each a year.
Follow, follow, follow… Who? It’s easy to follow more people on Twitter than you can keep track of. You certainly don’t need to read every tweet for every person you follow, but eventually you’ll find some users you no longer want in your feed. TwitCleaner looks at everyone you follow and lets you know who is inactive, who isn’t following you back, who of those adorably endearing online stores might potentially be a bot…
Did you know that Twitter only keeps record of your most recent tweets? After a week or two, that tweet will be lost forever and no one (other than Google and the US Library of Congress) will have any record of what you’d posted. Backupify is a free resource that will create an ongoing archive of all of your tweets, which you can download from their website to a spreadsheet. This is a great tool to keep a simple archive of your business happenings (surely you’re tweeting about promotions and developments?) as well as your developing relationships.
I love Retweetrank, but not for its original purpose. When someone retweets something you’ve posted (that is, reposted something you tweeted so that all of that person’s followers can see what you posted too), you might never see that they’ve done this. The idea of Retweetrank is to show you how likely your tweets are to be retweeted by other users, but what I think the most thing it does is show you who retweeted your content and how. You could be an internet celebrity and never know it!
In a world of 140-character bursts, there isn’t a lot of room for visual. That’s where Twitpic comes in. Twitpic lets you upload pictures and link them through a shortened URL into your tweet. It can be used both for mobile and on your computer, which is great for sharing snapshots on the go.
In 2009 Twitter rolled out a feature that allows you to group Twitter users by a common field. There are lists by industry, location, common interest, buzzwords… For the 200+ million users on Twitter, lists are by and large the best way to find the users tweeting about the things important to you. Listorious is an online directory of all those lists. Add yourself to their database or browse lists others have created to connec twiht
The above mentioned tools are far from the only resources that exist to juggle all the possibilities of Twitter, but they’re a few of my favourites.
What are your favourite Twitter tools? What other things would you like to be able to do on Twitter? Tell us in the comments below.
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