HootSuite: Twitter Tool with actual Business Value

There has been so much discussion about Twitter over the last six months and it seems like for the last year in Higher Education we have been searching for an actual business value from the service.  Heck we have talked about it a good many times on this blog and some of those posts that come to mind include:

In my new role as an Inbound Marketing Consultant at HubSpot we are constantly trying to create new software to better manage a web marketing strategy and create tools to dig through this.  Twitter Grader has been an interesting tool if you haven’t seen it and Facebook Grader which we just beta launched last week promises to be the biggest yet!

NOTE 2/11/2009: BrightKit was recently Rebranded to HootSuite since this article was written so I’m changing references.

brightkit logo HootSuite: Twitter Tool with actual Business ValueAnyway, most recently I have been playing around with HootSuite, not to be confused with BrightKite the location based tool, and if you follow me on Twitter you have probably noticed a number of links to articles I’ve been dropping through the day on a regular basis?  Well since kind of abandoning the Links of the Week series on this blog I’ve been trying to come up with new ways to continue to share those awesome articles that I still continue to read.  I honestly don’t have the time anymore to compile a post of links and with the increased work load and staff on this blog there is honestly better content being published now than ever before.

So How HootSuite Fits In

brightkit stats 270x300 HootSuite: Twitter Tool with actual Business ValueHootSuite is a new service that does a few things of value from a business or a college standpoint.

  • Clickthroughs Analytics - If your trying to prove value of twitter to a business being able to track and show that it is actually sending traffic to your site is a pretty powerful tool.
  • Post Tweets from Multiple Accounts - through the interface you can login to multiple accounts and post tweets. This is important for people who are trying to manage a personal account and an account for your school or business because it’s one handy interface.
  • Queue Tweets - yes that’s right you can setup a tweet to post at a certain time in the future. This is extremely valuable if you have an upcoming event or special and want to announce it at a certain time. Queue it up and you don’t have to try and remember it.

So there you go three pretty simple, but rather powerful features especially from a business sense.  It will be interesting to see how this service continues going forward and when they come out of beta and potentially start charging.  You might want to go grab your account today!?

Final Thoughts

I enjoy using HootSuite to queue up tweets with links to stories throughout the day without flooding everything at one time.  Also because of workload I really don’t have the time to keep up with twitter though the day so being able to still provide value through the day while sort of being distant is a pretty cool feature.  It’s also interesting to see which links people actually click on and what time of day seem to get the best clickthroughs.  It’s really validates it when a tweet that you sent can drive 100 visitors to an article.  Also as I pointed out in the annual recap Twitter is the 3rd biggest source of traffic for this site so it has more than proven its value to me.  The downside of HootSuite is that it’s not very good or helpful at all at handling and fostering the two way conversations.  It can be done through the interface, but it’s a little clunky.  You are still much better off using this in tandem with TweetDeck or Twhirl in my opinion.

18 Responses to “HootSuite: Twitter Tool with actual Business Value”

  1. Says:

    Kyle, only one comment/complaint to the BrightKit is that top banner bar that it includes in everything (very distracting from the content that you send out).

    Keep sending the cool links.

  2. Says:

    @Paul - I agree the top banner is a little annoying, but I’m 99% sure that is part of their marketing plan and I can’t blame them for that. I mean they are offering us this really cool service for free. Also I’m sure it’s part of how they gather their analytics data. Maybe at some point they come out w/ a paid version that you can remove the banner? For now it’s free so I’m not going to complain too much.

  3. Says:

    I just tried BrightKit and I agree that it is a neat service. The top banner on links is going to make me think long and hard about using it for our University though.

    Here’s hoping they offer an option to pay to have it removed.

    • Says:

      If we keep the comments like this coming I’m sure they will read this post at some point and seriously consider a paid version for that… because here are some people who would pay for it.

  4. Says:

    Very cool tool. I think it could be very powerful if used the right way especially since you can use multiple accounts, but also because you can allow for multiple editors. So you can really open it up to all of your colleagues if you’re in an open business setting.

    I agree though the top banner makes it a difficult sell to the higher ed market. Makes it look less than authentic.

  5. Says:

    Here is a link to the top banner topic on GetSatisfaction.com. Feel free to vote for the idea of removing or re-branding the top banner.


  6. Says:

    The theme looks great, gives me a lot of inspiration for some of my own projects.a definite bookmark

  7. Says:

    I agree great business tool, I haven’t used the others since finding brightkit. Top bar doesn’t bother me, if they keep it free. Great place to advertise too should they open that option.

    Since they’re reading this, I would like to see a fave button to save interesting tweets for later. Also capture retweet info, how many times and who retweeted info.

    I find myself in between TweetDeck and BrightKit. Thumbs up for BrightKit, love their current features.

    Thanks for the blog.

  8. Says:

    EasyTweets is another one worth checking out. Handy list of features in their paid plans, and their free plan offers a few good basic features, too. It sports a decently-designed GUI, as well: https://easytweets.com/

  9. Says:

    Hey guys! Big news - BrightKit changed its name to …. HOOTSUITE. nice eh? Plus we added AdSense integration (Chuck Woo was on the right path) and RSS feeds, and more. Hope you likey. https://blog.hootsuite.com

    • Says:

      Hey Kate,
      Just updated this post to reflect the new branding. Love the new features in HootSuite. I just moved all our .eduGuru twitter account RSS feeds from Twitterfeed to HootSuite last night. The Booklet is also MONEY!

  10. Says:

    Thanks for the head’s up. It’s neat. But:

    They MUST MUST MUST get rid of that stupid banner ad. This tool is for serious users who don’t want that nonsense at the top of their links.

    Paid version for $9/month for no banners? Free version with banners? Something. I have to think a steady revenue stream is better than the ad dollars.

    But I will not use this until it’s gone.

    If they did that, and added CSV exports for stats (or API for stats to be called), it would be great…


  11. Says:

    Looks like HootSuite has decided to offer the option of removing the banner.


    Message posted on GetSatisfaction by HootSuite:

    Hi everyone,

    We realize not everyone likes the frame on ow.ly links.

    We will be making a change that allows users to turn this header on or off.

    Lots of users are using the frame on ow.ly links to display their AdSense ads and thereby earn revenue from their tweets… but we realize that not everyone will want to do this.

    Hope this helps. Thanks for the feedback.

    • Says:

      This is really cool! Honestly I’d be willing to pay $20/yr for their services… just moved all the .eduGuru RSS feeds over to HootSuite last night cause it’s easier to manage than twitterfeed and I love their analytics, bookmarklet and everything else.

  12. Says:

    Smart move with the Adsense, but does the Adsense program policies really allow framing other people’s content?

  13. Says:

    Features like Log in from multiple account and Tweet at a future time are awesome. Like you many of the people actually don’t have time to open Twitter all of the day and this tool will save lot of time and energy.

    Thanks Founderfor sharing this great tool with us. $9 a month is not bad if it can generate good amount of traffic to make money.

  14. Says:

    I LOVE twitter tools! There are some many great ones out there now, it really makes twitter much more fun.

  15. Says:

    I love Hootsuite. Enough said. No but seriously, I do love it. The feature set is surely unbeatable across the multitude of apps for Twitter etc., The integration of Ping.FM was the complete turning point for me.

    If there was a paid version (tell me if there is, please) I would happily pay.