There are a lot of tools for Twitter out there. We’ve all heard of the big ones: that’s not what this post is going to entail. What I’d like to dive into are some creative tools for Twitter that I haven’t seen a lot of people use, and that you can start to implement so you’ll be ahead of the pack!
Posting Statuses To Twitter At The Perfect Time – Timely.is
You might never have stopped to think about this, but… are you tweeting at the right time? I mean, to the vast majority of people, using Twitter amounts to nothing but tweeting something when they feel like doing it, and trusting their followers will get the message, read it and process it.
The truth is that sending a tweet when nobody is around is almost the same as not sending it. The tweet will become buried by all the messages that come after it. That is a simple, unavoidable fact.
And that is what Timely is here to address. It is a web application that can take care of scheduling all your tweets, and sending them when they would reach out to more people. Once you give Timely access to your Twitter account, the application will take care of analyzing the last 200 tweets you have sent, and figure out the best time slots for anything you want to send in the future.
If this sounds good to you, then you will be happy to know that Timely is a free service. Timely will analyze all your tweets and figure out what times of day you get the best engagement and then auto schedule your tweets for those best periods of the day. As your followers grow, Timely will adapt and learn what new times might be best. The app also provides tweet analytics and performance insights that shows you how you’re doing (including click-throughs and audience reached).
In a nutshell: If you send out multiple Tweets at once, it could annoy some of your followers. There’s also the risk that your Tweets could be pushed to the bottom of their feeds if they aren’t constantly reading their feeds. Timely helps fix that by scheduling your Tweets, and has the added benefit of some light analytics afterwards.
It is also a fantastic app for those managing multiple Twitter accounts who wants to optimize when their tweets are scheduled. The Timely bookmarklet makes for a nice work flow where you can fill up your queue of tweets quickly and then let Timely find the best time to tweet them out (and you can change between accounts with a single click). Great for community managers and others who want to share helpful links on Twitter without spending all day on it.
Posting Photos To Twitter With No Ads – Posterous
Posterous you say? I thought that was a blogging platform? Fear not, I mentioned that these would be creative tools, so read on to find out more about how to implement Posterous. There are a lot of ways to share photos with your followers on Twitter. Posterous, however, has a position in the photo sharing market that makes it truly the best option for sharing photos are Twitter, one that offers numerous advantages to you as a user and blogger.
If you have made your decision to start blogging through a tumblelog and you chose to use Posterous, you already have a distinct advantage to sharing your photos on Twitter through Posterous: your followers will be linked to your blog to view the photos and not to some 3rd party application like TwitPic.
This is advantageous in many ways: the foremost way being you allow users to check out a separate blog in addition to photos. Your blog can contain much more than just the photos that you’ve sent to Twitter! Services like TwitPic offer the bare minimum; pretty much only photos you upload to them which can be shared one at a time, and nothing else.
Many of these services are ridden with ads and look very cluttered and tacky. Meanwhile, using the “Clean Sheet” or one of Posterous’s other sleek themes will allow you to share your photo content on a nicely laid out on a blog style page with no ads and no distractions. You will notice Rainn Wilson from “The Office” does this on his Twitter. The benefits do not end here however.
Posterous offers the option to upload multiple photos at once and have them automatically appear in a very sleek slide show display. No more spamming your followers with shortlinks, simply upload a few photos that you took at the moment or recently and send one link out via Posterous to Twitter and give you followers a few things to check out. This makes your photo Tweets much more entertaining and worthwhile.
Additionally, you photos will display in a clean timeline. Posterous offers the aforementioned blog style layout, so your other photos display in date order for your users to check out. So after a person is linked to a photo of yours via Posterous, they now have access to the rest of your photos in a timeline style.
Lastly, you can add commentary to the photos in Posterous to give your readers a little more insight. This is another ability that adds value per Tweet. Gone are the days of “Here is me _______ – [shortlink]”, now you can upload photos and stay in the 140 character limit on Twitter while adding additional content on Posterous, giving your readers more context and description. It is also something that adds optional depth to readers they are interested.
Getting More Followers On Twitter By Sharing Content – CloudFlood
As you know, being a power user and having an impact on Twitter means that you need followers. Having a large follower base on Twitter means your tweets will reach as wide an audience as possible: not only your followers, but those who they retweet it to.
Having a large base on Twitter also allows you to inform people of other ventures that you are apart of, site as a new site or new release of something. One great method for gaining peoples interest is a “freebie”, giving something away in order to get something small back from the user, possible an email address, or maybe… even a tweet spreading word about whatever your new endeavor is.
Enter Cloud:Flood. To maximize the number of people who tweet about whatever page you’d like to direct them to, follow three easy steps to implement the Cloud:Flood app in perfect form: first, create a free product you want to give away to your website visitors. It could be an eBook on your chosen topic, an MP3 or even a Zip file full of PSD’s.
Then, make a button on the Cloud:Flood site, linking to the file you want to give away, and a page to promote (this can be any page you want, whether it is a new site, a new product, a new post…anything!). You then place the button that you just made on Cloud:Flood next to the freebie offering on your site.
Site visitors see the freebie, and are asked to Tweet or FB Share your link in order to get it. People love getting something for free, so from my experience, this has a high conversion rate: why would your followers pass up something free from you if all they have to do is send out a tweet or Facebook share? Once they share your link, they are automatically given the freebie.
You both win here: your followers get something for free, and you get free, guaranteed promotion on Twitter through their tweets, which you can set (you enter a predefined message to be shared before you make the button). Start up your next big project with a huge boost from Twitter with this technique, and you’ll be glad you did! Not only will you get eyeballs from Twitter visitors on a page you desire, but if you have the predetermined message mention your name, you’ll gain followers as well. So get to work on your next freebie, and let Cloud:Flood do the rest.