8 Simple Tools to Manage and Analyze Your Twitter Efforts

Last Updated Sep 16, 2011 12:57 PM EDT

Like using Twitter but wish you could streamline the process? Want to use Twitter to analyze keywords, trends, and your competition?

If you've been using Twitter for a while, you're probably already familiar with tools like HootSuite and TweetDeck.

So let's go a little deeper. Here are some simple tools that can make it easier to:

  • Schedule tweets. Buffer lets you schedule tweets throughout the day, week, etc., as well as perform simple analysis, like the times of day your followers tend to be more engaged by your tweets. Buffer is useful whether your tweets are and are not time-sensitive. Think of Buffer as a "set it and forget it" tool that allows you to concentrate your focus on Twitter activities to a few minutes per day.
  • Collect and publish tweets. Paper.li lets you collect tweets, by you and by others, and publish them on your own online "newspaper." You can share articles, videos.... For example, check out comedian Joe Rogan's page; it's been viewed over 500k times. If you've ever wanted to run a newspaper, now you can.
  • Research topics or specific keywords. Twazzup lets you search by keyword or topic (the more specific the better the results) to see latest news, popular links, and recent tweets. It's an easy way to keep up with trends regarding your industry, products, etc.
  • Check out the competition. Foller.me lets you analyze your competition's Twitter activity, at least in a basic way. Foller.me shows the most common topics and hashtags as well as the geography of the account's followers. (I now know I have followers in Cebu. Had to find Cebu on a map; my geography teacher would not be proud.) You also get an overview of who your competition often interacts with.
  • Check 'em out some more. TweetStats lets you analyze how competitors use their Twitter accounts. You can see the number of tweets per time period, links shared, a breakdown of when they typically tweet throughout the day, etc.
  • And even more. TweepStats is similar to TweetStats (and not just in name) but also shows top words tweeted, who the account owner mentioned, size of tweets, and tweets per day. Note: If the focus on competitive analysis makes you feel like a stalker, get over it. You can and should learn from analyzing how your competitors use Twitter. You can find strategies to borrow and discover ways to differentiate yourself. It's hard to beat your competition if you don't know your competition.
  • Analyze long term activity. Want to track topics, keywords, or hashtags over the long term? The Archivist lets you save keywords to your account so you can see the top URLs shared, most popular users, and number of tweets per time period. It's a great way to track activity and results over time.
And one more:
  • Manage social media activity. I have a friend who has over 700k Twitter followers. He's so into social media he should have his face enshrined on Mount Geekmore and I trust his opinion. He used HootSuite and TweetDeck but now loves SocialOomph. For free, SocialOomph lets you schedule tweets, save drafts, track keywords and topics, etc. The paid version includes Facebook scheduling, tweeting via email, auto-follow and auto-DM, manage blogs... tons of stuff. If you need -- or just want -- lots of functionality and features, check it out.
Related: Photo courtesy flickr user eldh, CC 2.0
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    Jeff Haden learned much of what he knows about business from managing a 250-employee book manufacturing plant. Everything else he picked up from ghostwriting books for some of the smartest CEOs and leaders in business. He has written more than 30 non-fiction books, including four Business and Investing titles that reached #1 on Amazon's bestseller list. Follow him on Twitter at @Jeff_Haden.