My experience with Twitter so far has been predominantly positive. Initial misgivings have moved aside and I have now adopted a more focussed approach to the Twitter potential as a productive business tool.
This potential has been realised by the discovery of some very useful tools that made twitter move from a random jumble of short messages to a massive network of valuable conversation. Twitter has been around for a few years now so if you haven’t engaged yet why bother, right? I would suggest you may want to reconsider.
I guess its a little like Neo’s discovery of the Matrix in the cult classic Wachowski brother trilogy. As Morpheus so eloquently put it” I'm trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You're the one that has to walk through it. “
We can ignore Twitter as a passing fancy and hope it goes away, but somehow I think its here to stay. If you don’t use it there’s one thing that is for certain, your competition will be using it to their advantage.
Here are ten suggested tools to get you started.
1: Twitter Search
A start-up concept that was just last month acquired by Twitter. Use the advanced search features to drill down content by keyword, location, attitude (positive or negative) link content and more.
Business use – target followers who have an interest in your industry, track conversations that have relevance to your business.
This is my desktop tweet management tool of choice. TweetDeck is your personal browser for staying in touch with what’s happening now, connecting you with your contacts across Twitter, Facebook and more. TweetDeck shows you everything you want to see at once, so you can stay organised and up to date. Also a handy tool for shortening URL’s on the go. Download application for Free.
Business use – Keep track of direct messages and use the search function to track keywords that may have relevance to your business in breal time.
Tweetburner allows you to track the website links you post on Twitter and find out how many times people clicked on the link. It does this by converting the link to a short URL and tracking how many times this URL was used to transport someone to the destination website.
Business use – Track your messages and know how effective they are.
Post your tweets to over 40 social media sites with a single post
Business use – Save time and spread the word.
Post photos on Twitter via your phone, and API or from their site.
Business use – A picture tells a thousand words.
Get a visual graph of your tweet frequency, replies and other detail. For your, or someone else’s account. Nice additional feature is the “twitcloud” showing your most frequent words used in your tweet history.
Business use – Good tools for reporting against your strategy
This Twitter tool shows trends within the Twittersphere by graphing your keyword selection by the date. Just enter in words or concepts separated by a comma, for instance Hillary, Obama, and search. Each item is colour coded, and as you move across the graph, you’ll see numbered comparisons. On the home page you’ll find a list of things that are ‘hot now’ and things that were ‘hot before’.
Business use – See what people are talking about.
Desktop application that allows you to search tweets from a specified location. E.g. within100km from your location.
Business use – Find out who is discussing what in your neighbourhood.
See where you rank in the Twittersphere overall or by your selected region. Top 100 – Top 1000 – search your profile, or others.
Business use – Great tool for tracking your twitter growth strategy
This one is a bit of indulgence, after all even business should involve a bit of escapism and enjoyment on occasion. Great visual tool to display your tweets via some very clever animation, choose letter by letter, rotation or clod.
Business use – This would be great for trade shows or in the waiting room of the office, memorising and attention getting way of displaying your tweets to a passive audience.
Follow us on twitter at http://www.twitter.com/MondayMorningNZ/