Nearly every business imaginable includes social media in its marketing strategy. Twitter, with around 330 million monthly active users (MUAs), is one must-have social platform for any small business. You may have already set up your brand’s Twitter account and become intimately familiar with the platform. However, you want to do more than merely exist on Twitter. You want to get the most out of your business’s Twitter account. First, you’ll need to know which Twitter tools are the best for small businesses.
Luckily, developers have built a vast selection of Twitter tools to strengthen small business’ social media presences. If you want to grow your business and attract new audiences, use the following Twitter tools.
Tweetdeck is a Twitter dashboard built for businesses.
It’s your Twitter homepage designed with brands in mind. Tweetdeck provides a series of customizable columns you can use to monitor feeds, post from multiple accounts and track trends and mentions.
However, the program doesn’t have any native analytics software or an analytics dashboard. It was developed by Twitter, which has its own analytics platform, Twitter Analytics. If you do use Tweetdeck, keep in mind you’ll also need to set up Analytics.
This all-in-one social media platform manager integrates with most other Twitter tools.
Hootsuite is your social media command center, where you can manage Twitter and all your other social media accounts with the same platform. Its column-based display lets you keep track of trends, follows and mentions on the same screen. Powerful analytics tools give you the data you need to apply best advertising practices on Twitter to your social media strategy. Hootsuite is one of the oldest and most popular social media management systems, and for a good reason — it does what it needs to and does it well.
However, Hootsuite doesn’t do the especially fancy stuff — at least, not on its own. Hootsuite is robust, but other Twitter tools will beat it in their own niches. For live video streaming, you’ll need to turn to another app, like YouTube or Periscope. Hootsuite can also integrate with other Twitter tools, like Audiense.
Price: Free and paid plans are available. Free plans are limited to one user and three social platforms, and they may not offer the flexibility a small business needs. Paid plans offer more users, more social platforms and unlimited message scheduling. However, they cost more than most other social media management systems.
Their three available paid plans include:
- Hootsuite Pro: This plan for solo entrepreneurs costs $348 annually. This version supports up to 10 social media accounts but doesn’t offer Hootsuite’s full analytics software.
- Hootsuite Team Plan: This plan costs $1,548 annually. It supports three different users and offers Hootsuite’s full analytics.
- Hootsuite Business Plan: Hootsuite’s business-based plan costs $7,188 annually and supports up to five users.
This cross-platform message scheduling solution allows you to schedule posts across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. That’s about all it does — no special tools track your posts’ engagement or plan for the best time of day to Tweet. Fortunately, it’s easy to integrate Buffer with Tweetdeck or Hootsuite, so the lack of analytics or monitoring tools won’t hurt much.
Price: Buffer offers a free plan with a limited number of users and several advanced paid plans. Plan prices run from $15 a month to $399 a month.
If you’ve run an ad campaign on Twitter before, you’re probably already familiar with Twitter Analytics — Twitter’s in-house analytics solution.
Twitter Analytics offers all the features you’d expect from a robust analytics platform. You can check your followers’ locations and learn more about their interests and occupation. Analytics offers a wide array of metrics about Tweet engagements and engagement rate over time. It also provides audience insights like your followers’ ages, genders and education levels. Thus, you can optimize your business’ branding and better target your audience.
Twitter Analytics is also great for optimizing your Twitter ad campaigns — figure out what works, what doesn’t and when is the best time of day to post.
Want simple and elegant graphic designs for your brand? Turn to Canva.
Canva is an online, drag-and-drop image creation tool. It comes with numerous templates and stock images to choose from and makes creating graphics for your brand effortless. The program also includes typical graphic design software features like image cropping, transparency and resizing.
Most importantly, developers designed Canva with the average person in mind — so you don’t need to be a graphic designer to use it.
However, Canva doesn’t export graphics as vectors, at least for now. The resolution at which you export a Canva-created logo is as high-def as you’re going to get. Canva recommends exporting your graphics as large as possible, which should work well enough for now.
Price: Free, although you can upgrade to a paid plan that includes support for custom fonts, GIFs and more.
In 2015, Twitter developed Periscope, its live video streaming service.
Periscope allows you to stream live video and embed your stream in a Tweet. It has its own analytics dashboard and activity tab that lets you track how viewers are interacting with your content.
However, Periscope doesn’t integrate all that much with Twitter beyond embedding support. You’ll need a Periscope account in addition to your Twitter login, and Periscope’s analytics features are mostly confined to its own platform. You won’t get much information about where your viewers come from, and you can’t necessarily link Periscope viewers back to Twitter accounts.
Sprout is another social media management tool designed with small- to medium-sized businesses in mind.
The program has its own inbuilt analytics and Tweet and mention monitoring. It also supports multiple profiles and integrates with Feedly, suggesting shareable content based on the content creators you follow. The developers have even created a mobile version for both iPhone and Android, so you can manage all of your accounts while on the move.
Sprout’s user interface is unique among social media management tools. Unlike Hootsuite and Tweetdeck, Sprout doesn’t offer a social stream with multiple columns’ worth of feeds from different platforms. The view is single-column only, with one account per feed. If you find the multi-feed Hootsuite and Tweetdeck layouts too busy, Sprout is an ideal option for you.
Price: Free plans and paid plans are available. Paid plans are per month and per user, starting at $99 monthly and going up to $249 a month.
Getting the Most out of Your Twitter Tools
No one Twitter tool is better than all the others. Although, a social media management platform is a great place to start.
While you might get pretty far by picking one or two of these Twitter tools, using them in conjunction with each other is the best strategy. Experiment and find what works for your business. The work you put in will pay off when you can use these Twitter tools to connect with your audience that much more.