No, Tweetdeck is not a new weapon the Bad Piggies are using against Angry Birds. Similarly, Hootsuite is not a nightclub for owls. Both are fabulous ways to organize your twitter.
If you are new to social media (or seasoned, and want a refresher) here are two tools you should have in your kit to effectively manage media:
- Tweetdeck. Tweetdeck is an excellent tool to manage streams of tweets and keep up with trends. You can create tabs which monitor every tweet containing specific hashtags, and even scan for mentions of you and your branding. The real advantage? If people misspell you brand name, your handle, or your name you can seek them out and reply to anyone and everyone that has mentioned you. You can also schedule tweets for peak viewing hours, (and for days when you take vacation so you can put your phone away) and track the effectiveness of your tweeting (Click-through-rate, # of clicks, relevancy, etc). Its very effective for tablets and light computers, especially for ‘bullpen’ scenarios where you are dealing with a steady flow of material. Can get a little wonky on android devices.
- Hootsuite. Basically everything that Tweetdeck is, but you use it via your internet browser, not as a separate app (except when you use a mobile device). The other major difference is that Tweetdeck is now owned by Twitter, which for me colored my opinion about it It doesn’t make streams update automatically (well, auto but not as blazingly fast).This is handy if you get easily overwhelmed or dizzy from watching twitter conversations fly by in light speed. The setup is (in my opinion) more user-friendly, and feel less like a stock ticker than Tweetdeck. If you want efficient, free, and a good starting point, opt for Hootsuite.