July 31, 2012

5 free tools for social media listening

Get grounded before you jump into the fire & start responding

Target audience: Nonprofits, cause organizations, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises, businesses, Web publishers, educators.

Guest post by Carie Lewis
Humane Society of the United States

Listening is the first step in social media. You have to listen to what others are saying about you before you jump into the fire. Listening will tell you what people are saying, and where they are saying it, so you know where to get started.

Many of these tools are Twitter-focused, because Twitter is the easiest place to get started in listening.

Here are five free tools I recommend to get started.

Tweetbeep: Twitter alerts via email

1Tweetbeep is essentially Google Alerts for Twitter. Whenever you’re mentioned on Twitter, you’ll get sent an email with details of that mention. You  can specify any search term you want. This is great for people who are not ready for the power of Tweetdeck of HootSuite with all their bells and whistles. Twitter is the most real-time account you have of what people are saying about you, so it’s really important to have a Twitter listening tool that matches your comfort level.

Tweetdeck: Your command center

2Tweetdeck is great because it runs in the background and gives you desktop alerts for mentions, similar to Microsoft Outlook when you get a new email. You can customize the different columns and have an array of search terms for people talking about you on Twitter. For example, mine has the following columns: @ replies of my personal Twitter account, @ replies of my organizational account, mentions of “humane society,” mentions of “hsus” and direct messages. When you’re ready to get real serious, ask your IT department for a second monitor that you can put just Tweetdeck on. (See photo at top.)

Kurrently: Check your public persona

3It is amazing, and scary, how many people still do not lock down the privacy on their Facebook profiles. That’s what makes Kurrently so useful: It’s a search engine for public Facebook updates. It actually now pulls in a lot more than Facebook updates, but that’s what I find it most useful for. Continue reading

October 10, 2011

7 top tools to measure performance & influence on Twitter

Twitter influence
Image by Thufir for Big Stock

Where to find stats, metrics & analytics for you & your brand

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, businesses, brands, bloggers, social media managers, individuals.

This is the part of our ongoing series on how organizations can get the most out of Twitter. Please check back weekly for the next installment. Also see:

8 nonprofit Twitter superstars
12-step guide on how to live-tweet an event
24 best practices for nonprofits using Twitter

By Kyria Abrahams
Socialbrite staff

twitter-essentialskyria-abrahamsAfter you’ve used Twitter for a time, you’ll want to measure your influence on Twitter as well as you’re performing from month to month. Unless you want to hire someone to spend the day counting and analyzing your retweets, take a look at the free tools below (some may have paid premium versions) and put them to use on behalf of your nonprofit, social enterprise, business — or your own brand.

 

klout logo

Klout: Measure influence and style

Klout is a visual, logical way to quickly see the main thing most organizations want to know about Twitter: where you stand against the competition. The application’s initial strength is the ease with which you can compare yourself to your peers. After using Klout for about a month, however, the information becomes more advanced, if not just downright complimentary. My “Klout Style” page, for example, offers sleek flattery such as: “You don’t just share news, you create the news” and “When you speak, people listen.” Thanks, Klout! How’s my tie look?

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Peerindex Logo

PeerIndex: Assess your online social capital

Where Klout was accessible and easy to decipher, I found PeerIndex a bit baffling. PeerIndex separates itself by measuring how your tweets “resonate” with others. They include ranking on several important-sounding topics, such as “authority,” “activity” and “realness.” Klout said I was influential, but PeerIndex seems to think my influence is limited. After reading through the Scores and Ranking page in the hopes of defining these terms, I came away still mystified about how the topics work and what they mean. On the plus side, if you use this tool at work, you can probably sound impressive in an office meeting by reporting to your boss that the Twitter project is highly authoritative. It might be a strong tool, but when all is said and done, I didn’t dig too deep into the site. However, it has a nice comparison graph that allows you to add and remove other Twitter users.

Rating: ★ ★

Twitalyzer: A subscription-model tool

Twitalyzer operates mainly on a subscription model, but gives away some basic features for free. I’m not in a position to pay $99/month to track my competition or get daily email alerts, so I can’t speak about its full range of offerings. I do feel comfortable saying it may not worth $99/month to spy on Cogsley Cogs’ Twitter statistics and your time would be better spent working on your own page. With a free account, I was able to log in and immediately see my relative percentile (only as ranked among other Twitalyzer users, though) and a map that informed me that most of my views come from New Jersey. It also told me what my Klout and PeerIndex ratings were. This seems like a tool better suited to analyzing your competition than to analyzing yourself.

Rating: ★ ★

TweetStats: Graph your stats!

Tweetstats remains true to its name, as it compiles a bar graph for quick viewing of your monthly stats. Easily see who you @replied to, whom you retweet and what time of day you tweet the most. A useful, basic tool that will offer a helpful overview for any Twitter campaign your nonprofit or business undertakes.

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Crowdbooster: Schedule and analyze

Of all the applications I used, Crowdbooster was my personal favorite. In addition to analyzing your influence and impressions, they also set themselves apart with useful features like the ability to schedule a tweet at the time where it will reach the most amount of followers. They provide actionable recommendations on influential users, offering the option to follow them back from inside their application. I found their charts clear and precise, and their analysis was directly applicable to my Twitter page.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Tweet Grader: Score your profile

Part of a suite of free online marketing tools powered by HubSpot, Tweet Grader is a straightforward tool that measures the power of your Twitter profile. Type in your Twitter handle and Tweet Grader generates a score out of 100 for your overall Twitter profile. You can also use it to find out the scores of other Twitter users and then compare those to your own. In calculating your score, Tweet Grader’s algorithm takes into account the following factors: number and power of followers, follower-to-following ratio, update frequency and most recent, as well as engagement. The site is also handy for seeing top lists, generated by Twitter Grader based on its scoring system. Use it to locate the “Twitter elite,” i.e. Top Users, Top Brands and even Top Women on Twitter.

Rating ★ ★ Continue reading