Twitter intergration has finally come to the world of mind mapping software, thanks to CS Odessa’s new MindTweet plug-in for ConceptDraw MINDMAP 7. This new tool enables you to brainstorm, organize and send Twitter messages from within the program.
MindTweet is available from the ConceptDraw Solution Park; it’s a free download. The app installs a new Twitter icon in the program’s main toolbar. Before you can use MindTweet, you must login to your Twitter account and authorize the app to communicate with it. Once that’s done, all you have to do is select a topic in your mind map, click on the Twitter icon and a dialog box pops up, containing the text of your tweet. It also displays the number of characters left out of the 140 maximum that Twitter allows. You can then edit your tweet as needed and send it. Before doing so, if you check the “done” box in the corner of the dialog box, MindTweet will automatically add a checkbox icon to that topic – giving you a visual indication that this tweet has been sent.
This app is the ultimate in simplicity. But how is it useful?
If your job involves managing social media for your organization, it’s a godsend. MindTweet enables you to brainstorm ideas, themes, keywords and entire tweets using ConceptDraw MINDMAP’s brainstorming mode. I can see how this could be very useful in small group brainstorming sessions. You can also use the program’s presentation mode to share your proposed tweet campaign with your boss or coworker, and annotate the map with their suggestions. You can categorize and organize topic tweets, noting priorities and adding notes for future reference. Icons can be used to denote tweets that are ready to send out, priority or order of tweets to be sent, and those that need additional work.
In other words, you can design an entire Twitter campaign and then send your tweets out – without leaving the mind mapping program.The radial format of a mind map makes it very easy to see the visual sequence of tweets you intend to send out. This approach is ideal for brand-building campaigns, where you want to be able to tell and build upon a consistent story over a series of tweets.
I’ve been using Twitter for several years now. To the best of my knowledge, there isn’t any program or online service that gives you the end-to-end power and flexibility that the ConceptDraw MINDMAP/MindTweet combo does. There are certainly many tools that enable you to write and schedule tweets, but nothing that gives you a palette upon which to brainstorm and organize an entire campaign like this.
A few shortcomings
There are three main features that I wish MindTweet offered, but I have to remember that this is a version 1.0 product:
First, MindTweet should have a link shortening tool built into it. If you have a long URL, you must use a link shortening service like bit.ly to generate a shortened URL, and then paste it into your tweet. This isn’t currently handled within MindTweet, but should be, in my opinion.
Second, it would be great if you could schedule tweets from within MindTweet, by turning topics into tasks and assigning a start date and time to them. But then you’d have to keep ConceptDraw MINDMAP open all the time, or would need to have tweets stored in an online repository. Perhaps future integration between MindTweet and HootSuite?
Finally, it would be very cool if MindTweet added a Twitter logo icon to the program’s symbol library. Why? So you could use it to differentiate between those topics that are tweets and others that are simply background information or raw ideas.
All things considered, MindTweet is a great effort by CS Odessa. It’s wonderful to see a developer who isn’t afraid to take the lead and develop an app that brings such valuable social media integration to the table. I can’t wait to see how MindTweet evolves – it should be quite interesting!