Managing Twitter with TweetDeck

Ciao, SEers. I thought today would be a good day to discuss social media management. Specifically, Twitter management. I’ve heard a lot of people swear by HootSuite, and I have used it on occasion. Our own Mae Clair has even discussed the advantages of it. But for my money (actually, that’s a poor turn of phrase because it’s free), nothing beats the functionality of TweetDeck.

TweetDeck is like any other app that syncs with Twitter. You need to give your authorization in Twitter for the two to work in tandem. Go to tweetdeck.twitter.com and you will be prompted to log into your Twitter account. Once you do that, though, the fun begins.

SETTINGS

First, let’s talk about settings. If you click the gear in the left sidebar then select “settings,” you will be taken to this screen.

TweetDeck Settings

You can play around and choose which options work for you. I like the light theme rather than the dark, and I chose medium column and font sizes. I would have made these as large as possible (my eyesight is less than desirable), but the bigger they are, the less I can see on one screen. Then I tried the smallest, which gave me the most information, but you guessed it… I couldn’t make anything out. You need to adjust this for your comfort. I just wanted to tell you where to find the setting.

COLUMNS

Next thing you want to do is add columns. As it happens, I have a lot of streams I like to keep track of.

  • Mentions (people who refer to @stacitroilo in their tweets)
  • Ones I contribute to:
    • mine
    • Story Empire
    • my pen names (for right now, that’s just Keira Beck)
    • publisher AIW Press
  • Then there are the people I like to follow (these are called USERS):
    • me
    • all the SE contributors
    • some of my friends
    • some of my favorite authors
  • And you can’t forget relevant hashtags (these are just some of mine; you have to choose what works for you):
    • #romancebooks
    • #romancenovels
    • #thrillers
    • #writetip
    • #mondaybookblog
    • #tuesdaybooks
    • #fridayreads
    • #amwriting
    • #amreading

Here is an example of just some of the columns I have. (If I continued scrolling right, you’d see a lot more.)

Columns

Adding a column is easy. Just click the “+” in the left sidebar, then select the type of column you want to add. And there are several options.

Column Types

Some columns require nothing more than clicking the icon (like the messages icon—that will result in your DM stream being added). Others require a bit more work. For example, if you select the “user” icon, you’ll get this screen.

User Column

You need to type in a person’s Twitter name to add that column. For example, if you want to follow me, type “@stacitroilo” and a column with all of my tweets will be added to the far right of the screen. If you type “@storyempire” then our Twitter stream will be added.

You need to follow a similar process to follow a specific hashtag. Click the “+” followed by the “search” icon. Type in the hashtag in the upper left corner, then hit “return” or “enter” on your keyboard. Then the column will appear.

Hashtag Search

As I’ve mentioned, columns add to the far right, so if you have a lot of columns, you may have to scroll a while to find the new one. If you want it to have a more prominent position on your screen, click and hold on the three tight vertical bars in the column’s heading (under a small numeral indicating what column number it is) then drag the column left until you have it positioned where you want it.

TWEETING

There’s no point in setting up all these streams if you can’t actually Tweet from the app. Of course you can. And it’s simple.

Click the quill icon at the top of the left sidebar. A screen like this will appear:

Tweet

From there, you can type your tweet, add an image or video, schedule the tweet for another time… even select which account you want to tweet from. Ahh… that’s something we didn’t discuss yet.

MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS

This is one of the biggest reasons I prefer TweetDeck. Take a group like Story Empire. We should all have access to the Twitter account, not just one of us. Sure, we could all share passwords, but you know the potential pitfalls of that.

TweetDeck allows the account holder to invite other users to participate and to select the level of participation.

Team Management

To create a group, click on the “accounts” icon in the left sidebar (it looks like two people), click the account you want to add user(s) to, then click the “manage team” button. Type the name of the user you want to invite in the “add a team member” field (make sure you use the at-sign: @stacitroilo), then click “authorize.” They will receive an invitation to be a contributor. To give them full access, just click on the “change role” hyperlink and click the “admin” button to upgrade them. You can always move them back to “contributor” later if you change your mind.

Change Role

DAILY USAGE

Once you have your account(s) set up the way you’d like, you can like, retweet, or respond to people right from the streams. If you, like me, are managing different pen names or are a contributor or admin of a group account, you will have a default user (I make that me) but you can always select a different user to like as or reply or retweet from.

Clicking the three little dots at the bottom right of any tweet will bring up this option:

Like From Account

All you have to do is select a different account to like from, and it’s done.

Likes

Retweets are even easier. Click the “retweet” button just like you would in Twitter. If you don’t have other accounts, proceed as normal. If you do, select the account you want to retweet from, then proceed.

Retweet


So, there you have it. A quick look at the main features of TweetDeck. You can get more detailed, but I’ve found these basics are more than enough for me to manage Twitter (and all my accounts) in one efficient app.

If you have any questions or a different opinion, I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment below.

Staci Troilo Bio

42 thoughts on “Managing Twitter with TweetDeck

    • All this stuff takes time to learn. The first time I tried any of the tools that are supposed to my our lives easier, I was frustrated and confused. I gave up on Scrivener the first time. HootSuite. TweetDeck. Countless other things, I’m sure. The second time, though, I figured it all out. I wouldn’t want to write without Scrivener now, and I wouldn’t want to deal with Twitter without TweetDeck. If you have any questions, let me know. If I can help, I will. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks so much Staci. When I go back to having another look, I know where to find you, lol. Oh, and Scrivener, don’t get me started. I bought the program 3 years ago, it’s collecting dust LOL. Omg, I took several webinars through the years, bought ‘Scrivener for dummies’ and I can’t seem to get comfortable with it either. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Well, if I can answer any questions about Scrivener, let me know. I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a power user like our P. H. Solomon is, but I’m capable and can get by. I doubt most of us need every feature the software offers, but it’s definitely an upgrade from word processors. I love the way I can organize everything in one place—research, outline, character bible, setting descriptions, scene cards, and the writing itself. Literally all on one screen, visible always or with a click of the mouse. It’s a lot better than opening 700 documents to keep track of everything.

        And this was supposed to be a post about TweetDeck. LOL

        Like

  1. Pingback: Author Inspiration and Last Week’s Writing Links – Staci Troilo

  2. This is a great post, Staci! Like Harmony, I used Tweetdeck years ago, back before they were part of Twitter, then I think twitter bought them or something, and I changed over to Hootsuite. LIke vanderso, Hootsuite’s ability to save a draft and resend it is useful, and I used it primarily for Twitter pitch parties. Now, since I don’t do Twitter pitch parties any more, I’ll have to look into Tweetdeck again. Thanks for the great instructions as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I never even realized HootSuite had that ability. That would have been useful to me over the years. But I’m using eClincher for rerunning scheduled social media posts, so I find TweetDeck suits all my Twitter needs. If you try it, let me know what you think.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I am always looking for ways to save time with managing social media. I am not familiar with Tweetdeck, but will check it out. I currently use Hootesuite but that is hit and miss. Thanks, Staci. Your post is very thorough.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I tried HootSuite in the past but could never get into it. Mae uses it. I’m guessing people use whatever they tried first because it’s comfortable to them. Glad to be able to offer you an alternative.

      Like

  4. What is the advantage of Tweetdeck over just going through the home and notification feeds on Twitter? I schedule tweets through Twittimer (free up to ten tweets a day) and other than that I do a run-through of Twitter once or twice a day, much like Facebook.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I find a couple of advantages, the first of which might not apply to you.

      • I can like, tweet, and retweet from any of the accounts I am a contributor to, including groups and pen names. (I don’t think you have a pen name, but maybe this will interest you for your sisterhood group.)
      • I can scan Twitter accounts and specific hashtags at a glance (assuming I have added them to my columns) instead of doing a search for them. Depending on how many accounts or terms I want to keep track of, this can be a huge timesaver. I have streams up for me (of course), Story Empire (naturally), my pen names, MondayBlogs, TuesdayBookBlog, FridayReads, a few different romance accounts, a few different romance hashtags, the thriller hashtag… you get the idea. Rather than searching for each of those individually, they’re already visible on my screen and I can just scan them and manage all my activity right from that one place.

      And you can schedule tweets from there, just not batch tweets for a drip campaign.

      I’d never tell someone to quit something that works for them to try an alternative my way, but this option works for me. You have to do what’s efficient for you. I’m unfamiliar with Twittimer, but now I think I’ll look into that. Thanks for mentioning it.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Searching for an alternative to Hootsuite once they trashed their system, I looked at Tweetdeck. I couldn’t find an important function that I relied on in Hootsuite and that this article doesn’t address. I need to be able to go into my account once and advance-schedule a single tweet several times over the course of a week. Takes a short time once a week rather than a block of time every day. The old Hootsuite had a “drafts” page where you could click “edit” and reschedule up to your approved limit (30 at a time for the free version). For my small book sales, this worked fine. I see nowhere in Tweetdeck where a user can store drafts for future use. I never had any trouble posting a tweet more than once and in fact was able, laboriously, to do so when I last wrestled with the new Hootsuite (but then I don’t spam–the 30-post limit effectively prevented that, anyway). I’ve found one truly free tool called Proofer. It is limited as well in that you can do all these lovely things described here, but you do seem to be able to store drafts for future use. Losing functionality in Hootsuite has been hugely disappointing. They’ve offered help, but it’s been useless so far. Is there any way to use Tweetdeck like the old “drafts’ function in Hootsuite?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sorry. That’s not something TweetDeck can do. At least, not to my knowledge. I use eClincher to schedule recurring tweets (as well as Facebook posts). But if someone else has an alternative, I’m happy to check it out.

      Like

      • Thanks for your quick reply. So I wasn’t just missing something! My immediate problem is that I don’t think I sell enough books through tweets to justify paying for a social management service like eClincher. I tweet news about new posts on my blogs, with the intention of bringing people to the blogs. I do think I get some sales that way, but not $100+ a year worth. If I become more sophisticated in my marketing skills, upgrading will definitely be a possibility. I’ll do some testing of different posting patterns in the near future to decide. This has been a really helpful article. Thanks so much.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I bought eClincher for a one-time price. That was infinitely more agreeable to me than a subscription service. I couldn’t justify that expense.

        In lieu of that, or any simple app, I suggest creating a few graphics (you can make decent ones in Canva, which is free) and saving them on your laptop. Then, when you want to tweet (or FB post, or Instagram post, or any other social media you use) just attach the graphic to a quick line of text. It’s obviously a little more time consuming, but with an attached graphic, you won’t have to reinvent the wheel every time. Just attach and post.

        Sorry. I wish I had a super-simple and free alternative for you.

        Like

  6. This is a great in depth look at Tweetdeck, Staci. Although I use Hootsuite, I think it’s fabulous there are multiple alternatives for managing social media accounts. What’s really nice about Tweetdeck is the ability to Tweet as different users from one place.I don’t think you can do that with Hootsuite, at least not with the free version.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks for the information, Staci. Does Tweetdeck allow for more social media management? I think I’ve tried it before. Hootsuite changed their free account parameters so much that it’s not worth using. I could use something to better manage all my accounts.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great post explaining Tweetdeck. Thanks, Staci. I used it a long time ago but I didn’t get along with it, lol. Having said that, it is a whole lot easier than trying to do individual searches on Twitter.

    Liked by 1 person

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