5 Twitter Applications for Your Leadership Toolbox

Depending on your perception of Twitter and Twitter usage, you might not think of Twitter being an essential tool in your Leadership Toolbox.  Once you look beyond Twitter as an extension of Facebook, email, or chat, you will be able to see how it is indeed an invaluable tool that you can use to manage your campus organization. 

One thing to keep in mind in order to implement Twitter as a leadership management tool with your club or organization is that all the people in your organization must use Twitter as well.  Another stipulation is that the members of your group should FOLLOW YOU on Twitter and in return you should FOLLOW THEM.  To get you and your members started on Twitter here are some Twitips to get you started.

Below are some suggested Twitter Applications and there practical uses for leading and managing your campus organization:

Campustweet is an application which allows you to opt into a listing based upon your state and school.  Once listed you are able to view all other Twitter users for your university including students, alumni, and faculty/staff.

Practical Applications:

  • Build your network.  Use this listing to follow people on campus and make connections. Establishing relationships with fellow students, alumni, or faculty & staff can potentially result in many opportunities for your organization.  Having a social network such as this on your campus can provide you with educational, programming, publicity, philanthropic, and fundraising opportunities.
  • Example #1: Use Campustweet to make a connection with a faculty member who is a wine-enthusiast.  Coordinate an event with the faculty member who will educate guests about wine along with a local winery to provide wine samples and sell their product. Your organization can promote the event and sell tickets. Use your Campustweet network to promote the event and sell tickets.
  • Example #2: Your club wants to arrange a fundraiser for the victims of a natural disaster.  Your group decides to hold a car wash during Homecoming Weekend.  Use your Campustweet network to publicize the event to all students, alumni, and faculty coming to campus for Homecoming Weekend.
  • Tweet your Campustweet network to educate about your organization, recruit members, and publicize your events.

Tweetshare is a Twitter Application that allows you to post files, images, and videos, and then have discussions about your posts.  You can also post questions and quick polls with and set time limits to your conversations up to 30 hours.

Practical Applications:

  • Example #1: You receive the tweet: “Help! Get snacks 4 meeting.”  Use Tweetshare to post a quick poll to your members.  Your tweet says: “Meeting 8pm. Vote now on snacks.”  Your quick poll says: Snack Choices: A) chips and salsa, B.) chocolate, C.) veggies & ranch dip, D.) cupcakes. Your group immediately begins to tweet you back with their choices, and you are ready to shop.
  • Example #2: Your committee is preparing for the Annual Semi-Formal. Two members are shopping for centerpieces.  They use Tweetshare to post video of three different centerpieces.  They create a quick poll to get results and are able to have discussion within the committee via Tweetshare.  The committee comes to a consensus and is able to purchase centerpieces in one trip.
  • Example #3: The Advisor of your campus group is retiring, and you are drafting a speech for a dinner in her honor. You post the Word document on Tweetshare and your members collaborate and make suggestions.

Twitpic allows you to upload and tweet pictures from your phone.

Practical Applications:

  • Example #1: You’re attending a conference and tweeting pictures and information back to your campus and organization in real-time.
  • Example #2: Your organization is holding a dance-a-thon fundraiser and you are using Twitpic to publicize this ongoing event.
  • Example #3: It is new student orientation and the leaders have put a new spin on the old “get-to-know-your-campus” scavenger hunt.  Groups of new students are given a list of clues and must figure out and locate the campus site based on those clues; all individuals in the group (except the photographer) must be present in the photo.  The groups upload the photo and tweets with Twitpic to the specified Twitter account.  The winning group will be the one that adhered to all of the rules and Twitpics the correct campus location first.

Bit.ly shortens web links and allows you to track how many clicks each Bit.ly link receives.

Practical Applications:

  • Example #1: You are researching fundraisers on the internet and using Bit.ly to tweet links to your members.
  • Example #2: You are updating your group’s Facebook page and posting relevant links as Bit.ly links.
  • Example #3: You have found a valuable blog post on Studentlifeguru.com. You want to tweet the article to other student leaders on campus.  The permalink is too long so you copy and paste it in Bit.ly to shorten it. Now the link is tweetable and textable.

TweetDeck manages all your Twitter lists on your desktop, smart phone, or iPad so you can monitor many conversations at once.

Practical Applications:

  • When you follow a person or group on Twitter you are listing people in some kind of order you have created.  For instance, all the people you follow in your organization are listed in one group and Campustweet followers are listed in that respective group. If you are also active in student government, you could have followers in that group listed.  Your friends from high school and family members could be other possible lists.
  • With most of your followers listed, you are organizing these lists on TweetDeck.  You can also follow # (hashtag) groups here as well, which can be based on searchable key words such as #college, #leadership, #university, #studentaffairs, #fraternity, #sorority and any other key words related to your club or organization.
  • Each time you login to TweetDeck all of your lists are intact.  When you are at the library studying, you can keep an eye on ongoing conversations and all your leadership responsibilities while still getting your study time in.

For additional useful Twitter applications, check out Oneforty.

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