Posted July 14, 2010 8:35 am by with 10 comments

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andybealTwitter dashboard HootSuite added a new layer of functionality this week that emphasizes the influencers in your social media crowd and further lays the ground work toward becoming a pay service.

Like high school, social media users fall into cliques and everyone wants to hang with the popular kids because they’re the ones that have the most influence on those around them. HootSuite has made it easier to locate and pitch to those popular peeps with their new Klout Score filter.

Located on the home feed tab, the filter allows you to sort your incoming Twitter tweets by scope of influence as determined by HootSuite’s super secret algorithm, aka Klout. You can then use a slider to eliminate people under a particular Klout score, isolating only those people you really want to associate yourself with. In my case, I don’t have anyone higher than a 69 in Klout value with Andy Beal coming in just below a contact who calls herself a “bacon queen.” I’m just saying.

The filter also allows you to sort your tweets by keyword, a tool I found very handy.

Another new feature is the Follower Insights tab. Privacy be gone, as this tab lists multiple photos of the tweeter in question, along with their vital stats and a long list of profile links from around the web including Facebook, Linkedin, MySpace, even eBay and Amazon.

I’m not sure where HootSuite is pulling the Insight information from except that the photos appear to be coming from Facebook. My Insight Tab is blank, as are about half the people I tested. It’s not being driven by Klout either, because even though Andy has a very full Insight Tab, the bacon queen, who trumps him in Klout, has an empty tab.

At the bottom of the update, HootSuite reminds us that they’ll be rolling out their pay service in a few weeks. They emphasis that it will be aimed at businesses, with a reference to “unlimited social networks” for those who pony up. I currently run 15 social media accounts on one HootSuite account, so it will be interesting to see if that number will have to be cut should I choose not to pay for the service going forward.

Do you use HootSuite? What do you think of the new features and more importantly, do you like it enough to pay a monthly fee?

  • I do find the insights tab interesting and I agree that it seems to be a precursor to pushing power users toward a fee based product. Which frankly is fine with me at the right price.

    What concerns me with the inclusion of Klout scores is that it seems to be an endorsement of Klout as the way to measure effectiveness. You are right, many people are going to latch onto such scores because they want to be around the cool kids. For them, there is no hope of educating them that having a high score doesn’t always mean that person is effective.

    My hope is that people use the score as ONE tool for determining effectiveness, not the sole arbiter.

  • I agree with David’s wish that the more effective applications that further develop Twitter’s API don’t universally partner with one ranking source, which defeats the purpose of the definition of an algorithm.

    HootSuite is certainly a great dashboard for multiple accounts (today), but their allegiance from fans will be tested by the ultimate transition of any app’s popularity, premium services.

  • While the insights tab is interesting, a quick browse through my followers (and myself) showed that it isn’t necessarily accurate. Apparently, I have a myspace that I never knew existed, as well as a few other profiles. Based on the photos, I can change from Caucasian to Asian at will.

    I don’t mind the Klout scores, but I doubt that I’ll use them. In the grand scheme of things, it says nothing about relevancy or quality.

    • Cynthia Boris

      Ah Tammy, you’re not only multifaceted, you’re multi-faced. I especially love the second photo of you where you’re having a square-eye day.

  • Love the sleek design of the new version. Really great to handle multiple accounts on multiple networks Also love the intergrated URL Shortner.

  • The minute the Insight tab appeared on Hootsuite, I checked out what was there for me. I love Hootsuite and was intrigued. Alas, it posted a bunch of personal info such as age, employment, etc., that I’d never shared with HootSuite. This is very challenging because it may give the impression that my tweets are coming me speaking for my employer or another volunteer organization. Truthfully, I’m not that private a person, however I like to choose what I share — and I didn’t share all that info with Hootsuite! I was appalled and cancelled my HootSuite account immediately. For those who had their employers’ names imposed on us in the Insight tab, it can put us in an awkward position when tweeting about controversial subjects. My Twitter account is personal and my employment is nowhere to be seen in my account… so when HootSuite started giving everyone my age, employer, job title, etc., in the Insight tab, I had to leave them. Too bad, because it’s a great platform. I’m back to TweetDeck.

    • Cynthia

      Today I saw this posted on a website for a certain type of information gatherer. They mention the Insight tab with this note:

      “Right now, there doesn’t appear to be an opt-out to hide this information, so take advantage of it while it’s available!”

      Take advantage indeed. Here’s your chance to scoop up information before HootSuite realizes it made a mistake!

      I’m still wondering where some of this info is coming from. Has anyone figured that out yet?

  • Well, I haven’t been paying enough attention to hootsuite. Whatever happened to the list of followers that made it easy to see who was following me back or who I needed to follow back? I guess I need to catch up and see what the insight tab is all about. Sounds like mixed reviews from the above comments.

  • Well, I guess I haven’t been paying enough attention to hootsuite. Whatever happened to the list of followers that made it easy to see who was following me back or who I needed to follow back? I guess I need to catch up and see what the insight tab is all about. Sounds like mixed reviews from the above comments.

    • Cynthia

      Took me forever to find that. You now have to click owl for the drop down then choose contacts, then choose the user name in question.