10 free Twitter tools to keep you swinging through the social marketing jungle
What is Indiana Jones without his whip? A sweaty man with a hat who probably fell down a hole. We don’t need more of those, he probably wouldn’t be a great archaeologist either. His tools help him do a variety of tasks that no man or woman could do alone. Likewise, any marketer would tear their hair out if they tried to manually do all that was needed to fully optimize their social media channels. If you want to be the hero of Twitter Marketing on a budget, you need a thoughtfully chosen rucksack of free Twitter tools.
We’ve searched high and low to find you free Twitter tools, or ones that have a free option, that can seriously streamline the time you spend on social media:
Twitter’s very own customizable platform that gives you an easy view of your notifications, messages, lists, hashtags and activity across multiple profiles. This is a lifesaver for anyone who is dealing with multiple accounts, or needs to keep an eye on an active hashtag. If you’ve previously tried to manually host a Twitter chat or cover a live event, this can be a groundbreaking aid. Choose everything that you need to be aware of, put it all into Tweetdeck, and what previously may have required tons of browser tabs or log-ins and outs is now all available in one place.
The second screen experience is one of Twitter’s most exciting uses, turning a solitary activity into a global one and offering perfect marketing opportunities. Tweex is a Twitter client specifically designed with TV in mind and can be a vital companion if TV or events is a component of your Twitter strategy. You can discover what shows or sports fixtures are popular in your area or genre, helping you to decide which ones matter the most to your audience. You then get a highly-tailored timeline to match the show, giving you an insight into the people watching it so you can judge how your brand can enter the conversation. If you missed the show and want to see how the audience reacted, a cool feature is also that it can ‘rewind’ Twitter to show how a conversation about a show unravelled in real time. This could be useful research if you’re planning on marketing alongside a show or match in the future. It also updates relevant tags for your chosen shows, and can be used for conferences, events, and news stories too.
This handy tool skims through the Tweets of everyone you follow and shows you the most popular stories they’ve read. It’s a great insight into the reading tastes of your community, and gives you clues as to what content you should be sharing to engage them best. It also lets you see what’s popular among the people who are followed by the people you follow!
The average American spends 3.2 hours a day on Social Media. That’s great, but there will be days when even as a marketer you won’t be able to spend that time posting on Twitter. A solution is to schedule Tweets when you do have that time, relieving you of the pressure later on. Hootsuite allows you to schedule Tweets in advance, which assists greatly with posting outside office times or when you’re away. It also means you can precisely curate the timing of your Twitter campaign, and map it out rather than having to remember every occasion when you have to Tweet. Hootsuite also offers great analytics on how your scheduled Tweets have performed, and their free version allows you to schedule across three different social media accounts. On top of this, it also plugs into SocialBro.
Buffer is a scheduling tool that has a ridiculously easy to use Tweet queue. You can set up specific times for your Tweets to go out without having to manually enter the date and time on every occasion (although this feature is available if you prefer). With one click your Tweet will be scheduled in your queue and posted at the next available time you have chosen. Furthermore, it connects with SocialBro so you can set up your timetable around our Best Time To Tweet tool. Lastly, if you’re Tweeting a lot of content then Buffer also recommends Tweets for you to send out with popular links and quotes. Again, one click and it’s in your schedule.
Wondering whether to go with #GeniusMarketing2014 or #MarketingGenius2014? Taking time to find the best hashtag could be the difference between your message being heard or shouting into an empty room. RiteTag looks at the performance of hashtags and gives you a color-coded recommendation on whether you should use it or not. It also plugs into Buffer, Hootsuite, and Tweetdeck.
If you’ve had Twitter for a while, there’s a good chance you’ve followed a ton of people and you sometimes miss Tweets. This can be frustrating when you want to keep up to speed on what’s going on with specific people, businesses, or influencers in your field. Happy Friends does more than just make lists. It gives you all of a selected user’s recent updates, but you can delete Tweets when you’ve read them, archive them to see them later, and arrange people in any order you fancy. This means if there are Tweets you want to share, refer to, or use in your marketing at a later date you can access them easily in one place.
Twitter chats can be a great way of networking and finding out more about your industry. ChatSalad gives you a list of all upcoming and current Twitter chats, what they’re about and when they start. You can subscribe to your favorites, see who else has subscribed to them, and get notifications sent to your phone when they start. Scrolling through the extensive list is sure to pick out some new chats in your field that you can hop into. If you want your own Twitter chat to be included, Tweet @ChatSalad with the hashtag, time, topic, and time zone.
Your boss has just stopped you in the corridor, they’ve just read about how images are great on Twitter and are wondering what sort of percentage of your recent Tweets have images. Could you answer them honestly? In seconds, TweetieByte gives you an infographic with this information plus many other details. Do too few Tweets use links? Are you neglecting certain days? Have you used your main hashtag enough? Checking up on these things can give you a swift idea of any gaps in your Twitter marketing strategy that can be tough to keep track of. All you do is type in your (or any) Twitter handle and you’ll have a custom graphic ready soon after. If you want to give a quick, simple, visual representation of your Twitter use then it’s a great new piece of kit. What’s more, you can use it for any profile without having to log in.
Want to know if something was popular enough to trend recently, or how it performed if it did? iTrended lets you know how long something trended for, how high up it was trending, and the number of locations it was trending. This could be important for deciding on what trends or brands you want to be associated with. For example, if you’re deciding which conference you want your CEO to be speaking at you could see if any of them trended and which did the best and thus offers the largest potential online audience. It can also be used for quickly seeing the impact of one of your own (or a competitor’s) recent hashtag campaigns.
*Bonus* SocialBro Free
We’re allowed to include ourselves here aren’t we? You’re already here, so we may as well. We launched our free account recently for any Twitter user who has under 5000 social contacts (followers+following) and it includes many of our most popular analytical features. Discover your best time to Tweet (based on your 100 most relevant followers), gain insights into your community, follow and unfollow specific groups of people with ease, plus so much more.
If you have more than 5000 contacts, or want to see what a more powerful SocialBro plan has to offer then a two week trial is available for all of our paid plans.
Have we missed out a free Twitter tool that you simply can't live without? We'd love to hear about it, give them a shout out in the comments below and tell us what you like about them. Happy Tweeting!