Another new Twitter tool appeared this week. It was reviewed on Mashable.com. According to the overview the application was created in just 24 hours. The point of the tool is to auto-follow users who use certain words in Twitter. I love testing out new Twitter tools, but I have to admit I was confused as to what the point of this tool was.
I decided to take for a test drive. The first thing you notice is that it is incredibly easy to use. No doubt about it, it was designed as a simple tool, and the interface supports that. There is even a “How To” video on the home page, in case you are confused. The idea is to setup keywords that interest you, with certain limitations, generic words are excluded.
There are several tools that will perform keyword tracking in the Twitterverse – Tweetlater added that functionality this week, Tweetbeep has had it for a while. Where Twollow differs from these other tools is that instead of reporting the use of these keywords, it auto-follows the user that Tweeted the keyword.
I tested it with a few keywords that I felt would provide very limited results and not mean I ended up following thousands of new users overnight. I used Austin, Expedia & IncSlinger. I selected these based on location, Brand name and Personal Brand. Over a two day period I “auto-followed” less than 10 people. A few of them have actually turned out to be very informative and useful people to follow that I probably would not have found.
Who Would Use It?
I can see this tool being useful for people who have very specific, very focused interests or who want to follow people who are commenting on a particular event or news situation. I can also that the tool could be used by fake marketers – spammers, to find their next 10,000 targets. By setting up keywords that ensure the people they follow are talking about something relevant to them, could be Vacations, could used cars, hair products, it would be fairly easy for people sending out this type of Tweet to locate their next group of targets.
What It Needs
If this tool were expanded it could have a much greater use. Some features that would make it useful to both personal and business Twitter users include presenting the Twitter users who have used the particular word in columns – similar to TweetDeck’s columns. Then rank them by the number of times they used that keyword. The user that Tweeted it most at the top and so on down. Including the “in reply to” functionality would allow a user to then further review the use of the word for context sensitivity. Then allowing multiple selection of users to follow.
That functionality would make this tool much more useful, would appeal to both personal and business users and would limit its effectiveness for Spammers. Of course I am sure all that functionality would take a lot more than 24 hours to produce.
What would you build into this tool?