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December 15, 2010

Measuring online PR – The top Five Twitter Sentiment Tools

This post was inspired by a post from an online friend of mine Andy Merchant. Andy put together a list of three free Twitter apps that he thought were useful. I tested them out on the term “Tweasier” as a test and I got a mixed bag of results. However, what do we really expect from a free tool right?

I have listed my favourite Twitter sentiment tools here. Some are free and some are not but if you are looking to use a tool to measure Twitter sentiment sometimes it might be better if you decided to pay for it as you will get more accurate data. However, if you are just going to use it as a quick indication some of the free twitter sentiment tools will be fine.

I should caveat this post by saying as a digital PR specialist I find sentiment analysis of any kind a tad dubious and it shouldn’t be entirely trusted as these tools often can’t understand sarcasm or humour. So although you might be saying something like “This blog post is sh*t hot” it would put that down as a negative comment. So I always tell my clients to bear that in mind. I would say it is an indication rather than something to live or die by.

Here are my top five (6) sentiment tools:

    • Sysomos – this is a professional social media monitoring tool which I use from time to time. It is pretty expensive but it has a Twitter sentiment section which can be useful. To be honest this tool is more for the professional social media specialist as it covers everything from blogs right through to Forums.

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    • Twendz Pro is a clever twitter sentiment tool that looks very sophisticated and allows you to really drill down into conversations and gives the user a feel for a users influence. Unfortunately, again this is a paid for service but the application does look rather impressive.

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  • Social Mention – Social Mention is a social media search and analysis platform that aggregates user generated content from across the universe into a single stream of information. It allows you to easily track and measure what people are saying about you, your company, a new product, or any topic across the web’s social media landscape in real-time. Social Mention monitors 100+ social media properties directly including: Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc. It can break from time to time but hey this is a free application and it is by far the best of the free sentiment tools.

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  • Twitrrart. This is next best of the free ones for me and it is beautifully presented although when I ran a search for Tweasier it presented better data. This tool allows you to distinguish between negative, neutral and positive tweets surrounding a brand, product, person or topic.

  • Twitter Sentiment This is a bit basic looking but it did give me results hence the second place. It allows you to research the sentiment for a brand, product, or topic. It was actually a graduate school project from Stanford University.

  • Tweetfeel – this didn’t work at all for me. It looks OK and it is supposed to monitor positive and negative feelings in twitter conversations. I have included this app on the blog before.

This isn’t an exhaustive list, so if you have a Twitter sentiment tool you think should be added here, feel free to leave a comment and point us all in the right direction.

Also a special thanks to @Strider47 @IdoNotes for their contributions via Twitter.

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