TweetDeck makes Twitter Easy-to-Use & Hella Awesome

For anyone that has tried Twitter and doesn't really understand it, I usually recommend they try using TweetDeck before they give-up on the social media platform altogether. What is TweetDeck and why would you use it? Basically the best way to describe TweetDeck is it's a Twitter app that makes organizing and managing Tweets a lot easier and more fun to use. At least that is my opinion about it.

tweetdeckTweetDeck has a lot of features that Twitter natively doesn't have. For starters you can see and sort different columns for your timeline showing your latest Tweets from people you follow, interactions with others, direct messages, Twitter trends, and more. For those that haven't used TweetDeck you might be saying, “Can't you do that in Twitter?” Actually no, not really since with Twitter you can only view certain parts of your profile one-at-a-time whether it be on a mobile device on desktop. With TweetDeck you can see it all in one place simultaneously without having to click to go anywhere. It makes managing your social media profile a whole lot easier and saves a lot of time.

This idea was so simple but brilliant Twitter actually acquired TweetDeck several years ago. The creators of TweetDeck actually figured out a better way to handle and manage Twitter, than the Twitter themselves.

In addition with TweetDeck you can control several different Twitter accounts all in the same dashboard. If you are a Twitter power user with several accounts for different sites you run, this comes in handy. This allows you to not have to sign-in and then sign-out out for all your seperate Twitter accounts. Several small business owners use TweetDeck for keeping track with their personal and business accounts. I've also seen people with 10 or more accounts in 1 TweetDeck about but that gets a little bit crazy.

Using multiple accounts in TweetDeck comes in real handy in many situations though. Let's say you just got a funny fortune cookie you want to share with your followers. With TweetDeck you can send out the same Tweet to several different accounts at the same time.

If you'd rather the funny fortune cookie Tweet go out in a few hours, when you know more of your followers will be on Twitter, you can easily schedule Tweets to go out in the future. If needed you can schedule Tweets to post tomorrow, into next week or even next month. Scheduling Tweets is a good idea if you want to constantly connect with a Twitter fanbase but you know you can't be there 24/7. Twitter has no scheduling function you can use.

Another thing TweetDeck has over Twitter is the ability to easily filter Tweets. You can choose to only see Tweets with the hashtag “#awesome” and only see images with that particular hashtag. Sounds #awesome right? The filtering capabilities of TweetDeck are also useful for participating in a Twitter Chat, which is like an online forum chat on Twitter centered around a specific topic. If there are several Twitter Chats happening at the same time TweetDeck is useful for following both. Of course that can get a little confusing if are not prepared for it.

TweetDeck also makes creating Twitter lists a lot easier and more usable. Another nice feature they introduced a few days ago is custom timelines. I haven't used it too much but see the benefits.

I should emphasize the best part thing about TweetDeck, it's Free.  While you might have already assumed that a lot of social media management tools are not and based off of Freemium models.  (Meaning you can use it for free but extra features you need to pay for.)  I've tried a lot of them and honestly don't like them.  It's hard to integrate capabilities of several social networks that have their own idiosyncrasies into a single social dashboard.   For using Twitter and managing multiple profiles, I don't know what else you would use besides TweetDeck.

If you are interested in trying out TweetDeck I recommend you visit the website and sign-up for an account.

You can use TweetDeck with a Twitter browser app or use the service at this URL.  I wish TweetDeck Mobile Apps were still available but Twitter shutdown the apps earlier this year though.  Another thing that kinda of annoys me is that you used to be able push out Tweets from TweetDeck to Facebook.  I guess since Facebook is Twitter's main rival they realized that didn't make sense.

I hope you found my article useful if you haven't used or heard of TweetDeck before. If you have questions about using it please leave them below and I will try to answers them as best I can.  I should let people know I am not social media guru or anything. If you are a TweetDeck user I'd be happy to hear tips, tricks, and what you find useful about it.

Catch me on Twitter @AdamYamada… if you can!

Twitter IPO a Success, Should you Invest?

twitter ipoThe big social media and financial news this week was the Twitter IPO (Initial Public Offering) which seems to have been quite a success for the social networking service.

Twitter started trading shares to the public on Thursday (November 7th, 2013) and opened at $45.13 per share.  This was a 73% gain from the $26 per share that was offered to insiders and existing shareholders on Wednesday, the day before the IPO.  Early reports projected TWTR, the stock ticker symbol Twitter is listed under, to list around $35.

Twitter shares reached a high of trading at $50.09 during the Thursday, the first day of trading.  However, on Friday the shares slipped back down to under $45 and as of this writing the stock current sit at $41.65 per TWTR share.

Even if the shares pulled back Friday the Twitter IPO gave the social media company a huge boost in it's market capitalization.  How much?  About $25 billion along with the surging stock of course this fluctuates with the stock price.  It currently sits at under $20 billion.  This still means Twitter has a bigger valuation than a lot of S&P500 companies. The real question, is that a fair valuation for Twitter?

By all accounts Twitter is a poster child for a successful technology and social media company.  Twitter has roughly 100 million active users each day and over 230+ million accounts.  (Probably about 10%-15% of those accounts are bots though.)   Users create 500 million Tweets each day sharing thoughts to the world in 140 characters or less.

twitter iphone

Twitter's numbers are quite impressive but the microblogging service has yet to find a great way to make, you know… money.  Currently the best way Twitter is pulling in cash is Promoted Tweets and Trends.  Companies can pay to show Tweets to users they believe will find them of value and try to promote a hashtag trend they want to get noticed.  The company has also toyed with different ways to make money but a lot of those are not worth mentioning.  The Twitter IPO helped raise cash too.

Everyone it seems uses Twitter from journalists, celebrities, athletes, politicians, etc.  Warren Buffet even has a Twitter account but he doesn't actively Tweet.  Still Twitter is seen as an important tool in the web 2.0 world.

It should be noted that TWTR listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and not the NASDAQ which is where most tech and social media companies are listed.  Does that means the executives and founders of Twitter view it differently?

Whatever Evan Williams and Jack Dorsey think they are probably pretty happy since they added a significant amount to their personal wealth.  It should be noted these two and did not offer any of their shares for sale.  None of the banks underwriting the IPO Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and JPMorgan Chase, decided to sell shares as well.

The general belief seems to be even if Twitter is not making money now, they will figure it out eventually.  A lot of people are still joining and starting to use the service and a majority of users use the social network on smartphones.  Twitter still could lose ground and users just like Facebook is experiencing now.  Remember my article asking “Is Facebook for Old People Now?”  Could the same thing happen to Twitter?

I was annoyed that they stopped support of TweetDeck Mobile apps and I haven't been happy with other decisions Twitter has made.  Overall they've done a good job of making the Twitter API easy for developers to build on and make 3rd party Twitter clients and applications which has helped fuel growth.

Liking a social media service is different than investing in it though.  Would you invest in Twitter with your personal money?  Do you believe the Twitter IPO was successful?  Do you think you would wait until the TWTR comes down?  What do you see in Twitter's future?

Is Facebook for Old People Now?

facebook for old peopleThe other day I was scrolling through a private forum and I noticed one of the hot topics was this question, “Is Facebook for Old People Now?” and therefore “Is Facebook considered lame and uncool?”

I should clarify these were not the exact questions in the forum but is the general gist of what a lot of people are discussing right now whether they be internet marketers, social media managers, bloggers, journalists, etc.  Facebook, once the darling of social media and web 2.0 companies, seems to be losing a lot of steam.  Why is this?

I could throw you a bunch of statistics, link to a ton of articles, and give you a lot of different reasons for this.  However, the simple and easy explanation is that Moms and Dads like it and use Facebook a lot nowadays.  That means teenagers obviously don't like Facebook and can't be seen where parents hangout, online or offline.  Therefore even young people that do have accounts, they really are not using Facebook for social networking.

Most of these young people have taken a liking to the 6-second video service, Vine.  (WordPress a few months ago enabled Vine videos to be easily embedded in posts.)  In addition they like Instagram, which is why Facebook spent 1 billion dollars to buy it, a photo sharing app allows you to easily create beautiful images and videos.  SnapChat is another popular photo sharing service as it allows a person to send a photo which only the receiver can view for no more than 10 seconds.  (That's why it has earned a reputation as a porn app.)  Additionally Twitter is also gaining in popularity due to the ease of use of the social network on mobile devices.

Basically that all adds up to limited time for other social network chiefly Facebook.  Young people consider Facebook a pain to use and too time consuming.  Besides you can hear their thoughts before they would sign-on, “Ahh, this is something my parents like.” is what a pimple-faced, braces-laden teenager is saying somewhere right now.

Facebook still has not figured out how to make it easy to manage pages vs profiles and how to quickly sort through the newsfeed.  I also don't really understand how people build audiences without spending money on ads.  I am not going to spend money with a social network I have gained little value from personally and professionally.  That's why I recently deleted my personal profile and that's the issue that Facebook executives are facing.  If young people don't use it, they won't spend money with them in the future.

What do you think?  Is Facebook for Old People now?  Can Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook reverse this trend or is it the natural rise and fall of websites and the internet?

[Image Source – Washington Post]