Everywhere you turn these days, people are talking about Twitter. There seems to be an explosion of these social network sites the past couple of years – MySpace, Facebook, Plaxo, LinkedIn, and now Twitter. If you don’t know what Twitter is, it is a social networking and micro-blogging site that allows users to send “tweets” as well as read other user’s (followers) “tweets”. Tweets are limited to just 140 characters.
Once you have your account established and your profile completed, here are 10 tools that I have found will help you maximize Twitter.
- Mr. Tweet – is a website that will recommend people for you to follow based on your tweets and the individuals you are currently following. This site helps you build up your following counts and you receive updates every 2 weeks.
- Tweetag – is a search engine for tweets. Tweetag allows you to browse through all the public tweets published on Twitter.com. On the homepage is a tag cloud which displays the 40 most frequent topics currently being discussed on Twitter. You can search for particular keywords, for example, QuickBooks and all the messages mentioning QuickBooks will appear.
- Tweet Deck – is an Adobe Air desktop application, currently in public beta, that looks to capture the abundance of social media and display it in a unique columned user interface. Okay what does that mean? It has the ability to group people together all on one screen. You can create separate groups for friends and work colleagues which allows you to easily monitor any subject within Twitter.
- Twittermysite – allows you to add a Twitter button to your blog, website or even eNewsletter to get people to follow you.
- Minggl or TwitterFox – these tools are add-on’s if you use Firefox as your internet browser. The Minggl toolbar makes it easy to manage information across various social network sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. You can create a message from Minggl and select which sites you would like the message posted – to all or just one. You can view all the friends you have on all the social network sites and even send individual messages to them. TwitterFox is just an extension that notifies you of your friend’s tweets on Twitter. A tiny icon is added to the status bar which notifies you when your friends update their tweets – you can also update your tweets directly from TwitterFox.
- Ping – ping.fm is a service that enables social networking users to post a single message to the various social networking sites simultaneously.
- Tweet Later – allows you to send an automatic message to new followers welcome. You can set up the message to either be a public or private message and you are limited to 140 characters. With Tweet Later you can also set up keyword tracking alerts similar to Google alerts.
- Twitter Feed – is a service that allows you to set up an automatic feed from your blog to your Twitter account. You can control the frequency of the updates as well as add a prefix before each tweet such as “blog post”.
- Twellow – is the yellow pages for Twitter that makes it easy for you to search for people on Twitter in a multitude of categories.
- TwitterBerry – is a mobile client for posting updates to Twitter – for those that need their Twitter fix when on the road. There are also applications if you are an iPhone user – Twitter for iPhone.
Remember that Twitter is a social networking site so interact with your fellow followers, don’t just post tweets – share ideas, resources, build those relationships and have fun!
Linda Siniscal is the owner of Third Hand Secretarial Service LLC which she started in 1994. THSS is a virtual assistance company that assists small business owners with their administrative and bookkeeping tasks allowing her clients more time to focus and grow their business. THSS is an “extra hand when you need one.” She served on the International Virtual Assistants Association (ivvaa.org) Board of Directors for the term 2005-2008. You can email Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 732-899-0810 – www.yourextrahand.com.