Have you heard of the Twitter micro-blogging service? It’s a handy way to keep in touch with peers and friends. The primary use of Twitter is to publish short (maximum 140 character) messages that answer the question “what are you doing”.
Naturally the messages on Twitter have evolved to the point where people now ask questions such as “does anyone know how to ____”. These questions cover a huge range of topics and can be a perfect opportunity for your company to interact with a potential customer.
There’s a new software beta from Seeismic that adds some very helpful tools that will let you use Twitter without pulling the hair out of your head.
By default Twitter’s web client shows you messages addressed only to your name and only when that name is right at the beginning of the message.
Twhirl (beta) solves this problem by now including all mentions of your name in the default Twitter feed.
Using Twhirl you can now also create searches for keywords. For example my keywords are “mas90”, “sage sofwtare”, and “blackberry”. These keyword searches can be viewed individually within the software or you can have the show up in your main Twitter feed where they are most likely to be noticed.
Finally, the new Twhirl program integrates with a service called Ping.fm which lets you update all of your social media sites (Facebook, LinkedIn, Friendfeed, etc) from one location. So now instead of having to visit multiple web sites to update your status you can do it all automatically from within Twhirl.
If you’ve looked at Twitter before and found it too confusing, this may be a perfect time to take another look. Twhirl is beta so you must receive an invitation (request here) to get the download link. However it’s well worth the time to request and install this software because it makes Twitter use even easier.