Do we really need another Twitter tool? I think we do.
I started thinking about this tool when I was one of the alpha testers for Argyle Social’s groundbreaking social media tracking toolset. What I loved about Argyle’s tool is that I could finally show the impact of social media to the boss and it made sense.
I know not every company is on the social media bandwagon yet, but I feel like it’s time for a tool that deals with the other side of the social media equation. Argyle Social and their kin have the part to the right of the equal sign all figured out, but what about the people on the left side of the equation?
One of my smartest friends once mentioned that the role of software is to make something easier. Now that showing the impact of social is “easy”, how about the making the curation and management of a social stream easier.
I tweet a lot. Much of what I tweet is articles that I find interesting and I feel like my followers might find interesting. Some get traction, some don’t. Some I retweet, some I don’t. Some I get a notice from bit.ly that they are getting more than 20 clicks, most don’t. One of the frustrating things is that some I think are awesome don’t get the exposure that I feel is due.
If I had unlimited time I could do the heavy lifting involved in scheduling stuff to retweet a day later, maybe again a week later and seeing what works best. I want a piece of software that does that thinking for me.
Here’s my idea, it has certain features of Argyle Social, BufferApp and a few others.
I have a tweet I want to send out. I add it to my hopper of Tweets that are awaiting distribution (much like BufferApp). There is a process which will deal with items in the hopper according to an algorithm. New tweets have precedence over older tweets that are being retweeted, and more popular retweets have precedence over less popular ones.
The hopper is configured via sliders where you can control how fast tweets are sent out and how often things get reweeted. Individual tweets can override the general settings.
Let’s walk though a quick example…
I have a tweet I want to send out about my super awesome Twitter Awesomeness Score page. This is evergreen content. It will live there forever and each time I give it a nudge it gets pretty good traction, but I only think to tweet about it a couple times a year. I would like to automate that tweet to go out every month. So I set the tool to make sure that particular tweet goes out once a month forever. That’s it – I don’t want to have to put in a time, or day – I want the software to figure it out, because that what computers are best at. The tool will look at what is in my hopper the next time that tweet is due to go out and make an intelligent decision about when it should be tweeted.
I have another tweet that is a link to an awesome infographic on tweets during the Super Bowl. That will only be interesting for a week or two, so I use the sliders to tell the tool to tweet that out a few times on day 1, a couple times on day 2 and after that retweet according to how it’s being received (clicks and RT’s). If it’s still getting love, throw it back in the hopper automaticaly until it dies off.
Now thing ahead 6 months. My hopper gets at least a dozen new links added every day, some will be popular long after their initial tweet and will keep my hopper filled, so then there has to be intelligence about how to quilt together my tweet stream. I don’t want tweets in rapid succession so maybe I never show more that 1 or 2 retweets each hour, and maybe when tweets start to age they only show up in non-peak hours.
This is clearly one of those ideas that can quickly spiral out of control and become a nightmare, but I think the core premise is solid and needs to be explored.
Anyone want to brainstorm this through and see if we can make it come true?
Adam Covati says
I’d love to brainstorm on this. I think you’ve got some fantastic ideas here on the direction for Hopper – and we agree. Hopper in it’s current form is definitely step one on the path to Argyle delivering your content the optimal number of times, in the best places, at the cadence that is right for your audience.
As I said, we’re only at the first step of that process. Where we go from here is pretty wide open. Maybe we can get together and chat about it some time soon. Maybe at the next Web Analytics Wednesday, I think there is rumblings of one coming up in March.
Phil Buckley says
I’d love to Adam. Believe it or not I’ve whiteboarded this idea at least a half dozen times with various people.