Twitter can be a lot of fun. That is if you can avoid the trolls and haters. Even if it isn’t fun, perhaps you need to use Twitter for your career. Either way, managing a Twitter account can take up a lot of your time and energy.
Fortunately, Twitter doesn’t have to be a time suck. There are a range of free Twitter tools you can use to make Twitter more useful. In this article, we recommend the tools you’ll need to make Twitter work better for you.
1. Use TweetDeck to Schedule Tweets
You should already know that tweeting regularly is the key to growing a Twitter following. But maybe you’re busy and don’t have time to tweet every hour of every day. In that case, you can use the TweetDeck web app to schedule tweets in advance.
If you ever used the old TweetDeck app for smartphones then you’ll be pleased to know it is now an official part of Twitter in its new web app form. If you haven’t used it before, it’s easy to learn.
When you go to create a new tweet using the quill icon in the top left, you type your tweet into the text box. Then you can either post straight away by hitting Tweet, or use the Schedule Tweet function instead. That lets you choose the time and date you want and your tweet will be automatically posted for you.
2. Use IFTTT to Auto Post From Your Blog
It’s always a good idea to cross-post any content you create. This means that people who follow your Twitter but not your blog will be notified when you make a new blog post, which can drive better engagement.
But it’s a hassle to post a new tweet every time you make a blog post. Instead, you can use If This Then That (IFTTT) to automate the process.
In our ultimate guide to IFTTT we call it the web’s most powerful tool because it lets you automate posting across a huge range of services. If you use Tumblr, Blogger, WordPress, Medium, or Weebly for your blog then you can connect the service to IFTTT. Then you can create a new IFTTT applet which automatically posts to your twitter every time you publish a new post.
3. Use Twitter Analytics to Analyze Your Tweets
Did you know there’s an analytics tool built right into Twitter? If you want to see which of your tweets are performing well or to check how your following is progressing over time, Twitter Analytics has you covered.
When you visit Twitter Analytics you can see information like your top tweets, your top mention, your total tweet impressions, and your top follower. Use this information to tailor your tweets to make more of an impact.
Visit Twitter Analytics.
4. Use RiteTag to Find Out Which Hashtags to Use
Hashtags can be a complicated business. They’re essential for getting people to see your tweets, but it’s not always clear which hashtags you should be using.
We’ve talked in the past about how to choose the right hashtag for your tweet. But if you want a quick and easy way to find appropriate tags, try the RiteTag tool.
Use the search function in the top left of the page to look for a topic you’re interested in. Then RiteTag will display the most popular hashtags related to that topic.
You can also view a report on any of the hashtags, showing how often it is used and the average number of retweets for tweets using that tag. This will let you know which hashtags you should use for best discoverability.
5. Use Pablo to Create Shareable Images
Images are instantly engaging and are a great way to share content. But maybe you don’t have time to learn the basic Photoshop skills you’ll need to create your own images.
In that case, you can use Pablo to quickly and easily create shareable images. You choose a background image, add whatever text you want, change the font and the alignment, and you’re done.
You can instantly download your new image and share it on Twitter.
6. Use The Hash to See What’s Trending Worldwide
You can see what’s trending on Twitter by just looking at the trending column on the left of the homepage. But for a more aesthetically pleasing experience, try out The Hash web app.
The Hash shows an elegant horizontally scrolling visual overview of the top stories trending on Twitter now. It lets you see what’s happening in the world in a beautiful format.
Click on a title to see a summary of the story, or post the story straight to your Twitter account using the Share button.
Visit The Hash.
7. Use Trendsmap to See What’s Trending Locally
Sometimes you need a local view of what’s trending. If you want to know what topics are big in your area, or you want to see what’s trending somewhere else in the world, you can use Trendsmap.
Trendsmap shows a map of the world with top trending keywords from different locations overlaid on top. You can click on a keyword to see tweets using that word as well as stats on its recent usage. There are tools for analysis, visualizations, and alerts based on that keyword available too.
8. Use Who Tweeted It First to Find Tweet Origins
Twitter is known for having something of a reposting problem. People will sometimes copy tweets from others and post them to their own accounts without attribution.
This makes it almost impossible to find the original source of a tweet. If you need to know who originally tweeted about a topic or story, or even who created a meme, it’s difficult to find this information using Twitter’s built-in search tool.
In this case, you can use Who Tweeted It First. This simple web app lets you search by keyword or link and shows you the very first tweet posted which contained that keyword or link. Then you’ll be given a link so you can go straight to the source and share the original tweet if you want.
Visit Who Tweeted It First.
Make Twitter Work Better for You
These tools will help you use Twitter more efficiently. You can see what’s trending, see your analytics, schedule or automate your tweets, and find out which hashtags are popular. That way you’ll know what and when to post for maximum engagement.
Once you’ve mastered all of these tools to manage your own twitter account, you might want to tweak your Twitter feed as well. To do so, check out our list of great Twitter tools to manage your feed.