Yikes. I never thought that managing multiple Twitter accounts would be so hectic. I have little boxes jumping all over my screen. It’s quite distracting. Jumping back and forth between different types of information is a bit intense, but it’s also been fun.
I’ve made myself a guinea pig and have started trying out different clients and services to make the whole thing go a lot easier. I’m sure that there are other tools out there that I haven’t discovered (or haven’t been created yet) to make the multi-account lifestyle more bearable. Those will need to wait for another blog post…
I’ve had more than one account for some time now. Before I was really into tweeting with both my @thepetwiki and @renar accounts, I would use two different client programs to keep track of each. I used TweetDeck for one and Twhirl for the other. If the little pop-up was black, it was @thepetwiki, green meant @renar. All was good with the world. Although I probably could have survived that way, I decided to look for more sophisticated tools to let me do the thing I do.
Enter Seesmic Desktop, HootSuite, Splitweet and TweetLater. Out of the four of these, Seesmic Desktop is the only client application. The others are all web-based applications. Out of the three web-based services, only HootSuite and Splitweet allow you to see the tweets as they are coming in.
The TweetLater service, does just what you’d expect it to do. You can set your tweets to tweet at a specific time, after you set them up. Isn’t it great when things have appropriate names? There is both a professional and free version. I’m a pretty simple girl. For my purposes, the free version does just fine. Besides sending tweets when you want, you can also get all your replies emailed to you. That’s a nice little feature.
Splitweet is pretty simple. It allows you to tweet from one or multiple accounts at the same time. That’s all it does. Before I knew about Hootsuite, it fulfilled what I needed to do and I was happy.
HootSuite takes what’s best about both TweetLater and Splitweet and combines them into one nice package. I can tweet from multiple accounts at the same time, and set when those tweets will go out. The one thing that is annoying about HootSuite is the fact that you can only view tweets from one account at a time. It’s a pain to move back and forth between accounts to see what people are saying. It’s an improvement over the other two, but there is room for improvement.
Seesmic Desktop, the only application out the bunch, is built for viewing and responding to tweets from multiple accounts. In Seesmic Desktop, little boxes in the corner of your screen pop up to let you know you have new tweets and from which account those tweets come. It has a multi-colum view that allows you to set everything up in a way that is clearly marked, so you know which tweets belong to which account. It is a lot like TweetDeck and is nicely done. You can only send one tweet from one account at a time. Perhaps in future releases, they will allow their user to choose multiple accounts. That would be nice.
I think that I find Seemic Desktop and HootSuite the best out of the bunch. Those are my weapons of choice for now. It will be fun to see what other people come up with.