Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Twitter getting too messy? Get organized with TweetDeck!

Ever since I joined in March of last year, I have been struggling with the best way to use Twitter. More than anything, I use Twitter as a way to connect with people, to share links, and chat it up. But the problem I began running into several months ago was that I was following so many people that it was difficult to keep track of all the conversations happening, and especially hard to stay connected with the people that I had actually met and were friends with.

So I started significantly shaving down the number of people that I followed. While this made it easier to keep up with my friends on Twitter, it created a new problem; Many of the new followers I would pick up would unfollow again if I didn't follow back. Which is understandable, and I do the same thing.

But after seeing how Chris Brogan uses TweetDeck during last month's Marketing Profs Digital Marketing Mixer, I've started playing with it again. And what I love about TweetDeck is that it's a great way to get organized. It lets you create multiple columns that you can view at the same time, like I have one column with all the tweets from all the people I follow, a second column with tweets from the people I am friends with, a third column for my replies, and a fourth column for DMs. What I love about adding the column for my friends is that it allows me to start following more people, because now the people I want to stay in touch with have a separate column for their tweets. And additionally, it makes it easier for me to connect with new people, because as I follow more people, I get a sense of what their tweets are about, and it makes it easier to add them to my 'friends' group on TweetDeck.

Using TweetDeck as a powerful Twitter-monitoring and product feedback tool

But I also think that this system of organizing would work wonders for a company that wants to monitor Twitter! Look at the below screenshot where I have searches up at the same time for 'ipod touch', 'iphone', 'ipod' and 'nano'. This would allow someone from Apple to search and see what people on Twitter are saying right now about each of these products. Or if they were a brand manager for a specific line, such as the Touch, they could focus on more specific terms. This gives a company a great way to monitor the conversations that are happening on Twitter about them and their products, but also helps them identify HOW their current and potential customers are using their products. They can see which features are popular with customers, and which ones are not. Also, notice that many people will ask for recommendations on a product before purchasing. By using TweetDeck as a monitoring tool, companies can see which features customers recommend, and which ones they aren't too thrilled about.

What are your tips for using TweetDeck? How do you organize your Twitterstream, and if you monitor Twitter for your company, how are you doing it, and have you trying using TweetDeck?

BTW, think Motrin and their agency could have benefited from monitoring Twitter yesterday?


Anonymous said...

Hi Mack,

I am new to blogging and social media, and trying to get up to speed. So far, I have found your blogs to be invaluable as I climb the steep slope of the learning curve. Thank you. I am a fan!

And if you have any advice for newbies -- specific resources to check out, or whatever -- I would appreciate it.

Thanks, again, for all information and good ideas that you so generously share.

Anonymous said...

is there a way to add people to groups after you have created them?

Anonymous said...

Gosh, I really have to spend some time to tweak Tweetdeck! (say that three times fast) Thank you for the tips, Mack.

Rebecca said...

There is indeed a way to add new people to groups - and in fact a much easier way with the new version of TweetDeck. You'll see a plus sign at the bottom of someone's tweet, on the left hand side, right next to their name. If you click that you have the option to add them to a group.

Previously you had to manually update groups and it was a very lenghty process.

I've been a huge TweetDeck fan for a while now and each version just keeps getting better!

Gavin Heaton said...

Excellent timing, Mack ... I was planning on installing tweetdeck today, and this post magically appeared in my reader.

Now, can you also do something about my workload, my garden ... and what do you know about cars?

Anonymous said...

I've been really hot and cold on tweetdeck. Not sure why, but on my Vista machine Tweetdeck runs VERY hot and cold. Tweets can take up to 3 or 4 minutes to load or register. The whole experience is either sublime or a glitchy mess.

Appreciate the incentive to stick with them.

They have since released a new build, will have to play with it and see how it runs.

Mack Collier said...

Anonymous, Rebecca is exactly right, with the newest version of TweetDeck, it's very easy to add people to a group as Rebecca explained.

Jon I often have to wait a few minutes for new tweets to load after I start TweetDeck. I think that's a TweetDeck issue, and not a problem with Windows, but I could be wrong.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mack,

Great post. This really helped me with Tweetdeck. I have enjoyed reading your blog!

Anonymous said...

Tweetdeck released a new version this morning that resolves many of the performance issues mentioned in the comments here. It also added several new feature like spell check. Deets here: http://tweetdeck.posterous.com/tweetdeck-v021-is-here-merry-c

Taymar said...

I can't figure out how to follow somebody through tweetdeck. Seems like it should be pretty simple, but...