Update: In an announcement made on 10th January 2017 Twitter has said that it’s discontinuing Twitter Dashboard from 3rd February 2017. Read more about Twitter’s announcement here.
Twitter Dashboard was released last summer as a tool for small businesses in their management of the platform. Twitter says:
Today we’re offering a free tool to give all businesses an advantage in the way they use Twitter. With an iOS app and desktop web experience, Dashboard offers a single destination to get things done.
It was built with SMEs in mind as Twitter quite rightly acknowledges that larger business and corporates have the advantage of having skilled teams and sophisticated tools to manage their Social Media channels. This they provide to business like yours at zero cost which is always a bonus.
When Twitter Dashboard was rolled out first I must admit I was underwhelmed. However, I’m coming around a little. There are two main gripes I have with it. Firstly, there is no navigation (that I can see) to Dashboard from Twitter directly. This seems very strange to me. So you must go to dashboard.twitter.com to gain access. The second thing is that it’s not available on Android yet, just the Web and iOS versions for now, though it’s not available on iOS in Ireland at the time of writing.
All the same, I’ve been using it now for a while and it has some good features worth noting.
1. The ability to schedule tweets
Scheduling tweets is a real time saver. Of course, you could have done this before with third party tools like Hootsuite, but it required another account on another platform with another password. This certainly has the power to simplify. Once you’ve accessed Dashboard for the first time you’ll be able to schedule to your heart’s content. To do this you’ll need to navigate to ‘Create’ and start typing a tweet just as you would normally. Instead of tweeting it right now, click the down arrow to schedule. It will bring you up a calendar and you can assign a time and date for the tweet to be released.
Unlike Facebook’s scheduling tool which only allows scheduling for up to six months ahead, this does not seem to have a limit. I’ve tried to schedule tweets
for a year ahead with no errors. The Twitter Dashboard scheduling tool is ideal for scheduling tweets with likes to your evergreen content ensuring a steady stream of clicks to your website over time. What you don’t do of course is to schedule a heap of tweets and then walk way from the platform. Monitor, engage and respond!
2. Review your Analytics
Analytics are nothing new on Twitter in 2017 or indeed any other platform we use to market our businesses. Analytics on Twitter are available if you navigate to analytics from your profile picture of the top right hand side (on desktop/laptop). They are comprehensive and complicated. The Analytics served to you on Twitter Dashboard are stripped back basics and easily read. If you’re getting started with Analytics, this is a really good place to start.
The get to see your Analytics on Dashboard navigate to ‘Analytics’ on the top navigation. There are two tabs ‘Account’ and ‘Tweets’. The screen above is very clear and I can begin to see what is working and what’s useful to my audience. The trick then is to do more of that.
3. Create a Feed of what matters to your business
I’m sure you’ve all seen instances of a business being tweeted about but the tweeter failed to tag the account, therefore the business will never know they were mentioned. You will want to know about every mention of your business on Twitter and respond to all of them whether they be negative or positive. Up to now you would have had to put your business name into the search bar to find these tweets as they will not show up in your notifications. The thing was to remember to do that. There are some third party tools that will help you out here. However, with some nice new functionality on Twitter Dashboard now, you can list all the terms and hashtags that matter to your business creating a unique feed that you can monitor. I do like this very much!
So make a list right now of the terms and hashtags that you would like to monitor. You won’t get notification about these in the traditional way but what you’ll get is a very nice ‘customised feed’ of tweets that you can then engage with as you see fit. You can even monitor a competitor here, industry leaders, hashtags in the sector, your web address and so on. You will probably have been asked for these suggested terms when you were setting up Twitter Dashboard, but may not have understood the absolute gold you were being offered. Never fear though, you can go back in and rectify this.
To do this you must be in the ‘Home’ tab and in the ‘About you’ section.
Once you click to edit, Twitter tells you to ‘Add unique nicknames, phrases, people and hashtags’. Add your list and click to save the feed.
Your feed will now be populated with these terms which you can monitor. This is an excellent tool that you can use for your business in so many ways.