Twitter at first can appear to be another portal for information overload. You do the right thing and begin to follow 100 of your respected peers and influencers, only to find the conversation fast-paced and hard to keep up with. So how do you know when do you step in? How can you effectively manage your posts?
To help you out, I’ve reviewed five of the top applications out there being used by businesses and identified the ways in which they help create engagement.
5 Tools to Help Your Business Create Engagement on Twitter
Cost: Free or $9.99/Month
Tool Type: Monitoring and Scheduling
- Schedule posts
- Feed RSS posts into your stream
- Create different dashboards for multiple business ventures
- Incorporate different platforms onto the dashboard (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+)
- Analytics, create reports from Analytics, Google Analytics Integration [Paid]
- Assign teams to specific profiles and accounts
Pros: Ability to manage, monitor and track engagement from multiple platforms in one platform. Relatively inexpensive. Also available on mobile and tablet devices.
Cons: Has been known in the past for lengthy downtimes for maintenance or issues with hosting.
How does Hootsuite create engagement?: Monitor all your conversations in the one place so that you don’t miss out on anything your audience is saying. This means you will be able to efficiently reply to all of your audience responses in a timely manner. Schedule your content for your followers so that you won’t forget to update them with new information.
2. Twitter Advanced Search
Tool Type: Search
- Search operators to fine tune search queries
Pros: Easy to use and customise, and it’s free.
Cons: Not entirely accurate at times. Tested on known terms that did not appear in the search results.
How does Twitter Advanced Search create engagement?: It is a powerful research tool that can help you find conversations about your brand, product, service and more. Use this tool to identify both positive and negative sentiments. Connect with and leverage users who praise you, and help turn any disgruntled users into happy ones.
Cost: Free or $10/Month for extra accounts
Tool Type: Scheduling
- Schedules post for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and App.net
- Set custom times
- Easy management of posts
- Track and view analytics of your tweets
Pros: Integrates with many other apps and browsers, allowing you to schedule posts you read as you go. Schedule straight from your browser or RSS feed. Also works with Facebook. Available on mobile and tablet devices.
Cons: Some minor bugs when scheduling posts to Facebook can sometimes occur (e.g. posting without image attachment).
How does BufferApp create engagement?: Use in conjunction with other apps (see SocialBro below) to schedule posts based on the time your audience is most active. This optimises the chances of your followers seeing your post.
Tool Type: Management, Analytics and Community Management
- Browse the different kinds of followers and people you follow (new, famous, influential, inactive)
- Shows when your followers are the most active
- Ability to ‘Follow’ and ‘Unfollow’ multiple accounts at once
Pros: Great tool for optimising engagement with your Twitter Community. Free and easy to use, many useful features.
Cons: At the moment, only available for desktops.
How does SocialBro create engagement?: One of the highlights is the ability to look at the list of Twitter users who have recently followed you (since the previous sync). Gives you the opportunity to send them a direct message to say ‘Thank You’ (and place a call to action). Another great feature is to view if there are any famous or influential ‘Tweeps’ following you – great if you’re looking for brand advocates!
Tool Type: Community Monitoring and Analytics
- Highlight your brand’s most valued members
- Suggestions for who to follow and unfollow
- Monitor engagement with your sites
- Discover new community members based on keywords related to your brand
- Build activity and engagement reports
Pros: Identify brand advocates who are highly influential in your community at no cost.
Cons: Requires analytical skills, data may not be as accurate as shown in tests I conducted on popular terms.
How does Commun.it create engagement?: By leveraging the influence of your influential followers, half your work in engaging and increasing your online presence is done. This tool helps you identify the people you should be connecting with – they will help endorse you and recommend your product/service to their followers if you take the time to give them recognition.
There are hundreds of apps for Twitter quite similar to the five mentioned here. If I’m missing out on one of your favourites, let me know in the comments below!