9 min readWhat can Twitter Analytics tell you?

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Twitter Analytics: Your Tool for Reaching the People You Need

Imagine you’re an old school traveling vacuum cleaner salesman, but instead of visiting suburban homes where you’re able to sell to people who have a real need for your product, you visit anyone and everyone around you. It’s highly unlikely that the local butcher shop has a dire need for a vacuum cleaner. You’d definitely be wasting your time (and you’d most likely lose your job, too!).

This same principle works for social media, especially Twitter.

Whether you’re selling actual products or services or just promoting your personal brand on Twitter, you need to be smart about it and target the right people. You don’t want to be approaching the butcher shop of Twitter—unless you’re running a Twitter account for a famous knife manufacturer, in which case go ahead and find all the butcher shops out there.
So, how can you make sure you’re reaching the right people? Or that you are making the right impression for that matter? It’s easy. Use a tool that’s there for all Twitter users to use and it’s free: Twitter Analytics.

The Role of Twitter Analytics

Imagine this scenario: you’ve finally caved and decided to start a Twitter account for your business. Unfortunately, even though you’ve been tweeting regularly, you don’t know how well your tweets are doing. Or whether they’re even having an impact on your followers. Much less beyond. Luckily, Twitter Analytics has just what you need: a tool for keeping track of each of your tweets, in various metrics.

Start by visiting the account home. This is where you can look at all the monthly statistics, as well as which of your tweets is performing the best for a particular month and which high-follower accounts follow you.

Then, on the Tweets dashboard, you will find a breakdown of the metrics for each and every one of your tweets.

Under Audiences, you can check see who is following you, what the overall demographics are, and what their interests, lifestyle types, and buying styles are. More on followers will be covered later in this post.

The next Analytics tab is Events, which shows you what global or world-famous events are trending, where they’re most popular, who is talking about the the most, and which devices people are using when discussing these topics. You can even track hashtags and see which are at the top of the heap.

Google Analytics Events tab
Google Analytics includes an event tab with upcoming celebrations, such as BTS Speak Yourself Tour

Another tab covers Video analytics, where you can track videos that you post by how many views they’ve had and what the average watch rate is in minutes per day.

Finally, you can also track conversions under the Conversion Tracking tool. Get detailed insight into user behaviour and use this information to continuously improve on your campaigns. Find the people who are most likely to click-through on your content.

All of these dashboards come down to one thing: measuring metrics for better success of your brand.

The benefits and top insights

To break it down to the basics, Twitter Analytics helps you to track

  1. Engagement
  2.  Impressions
  3.  Tweet Activity
  4. Followers

Here’s a brief overview of each of these metrics and how they’re measured:

1. Engagement

Engagement encompasses follows, replies, favorites, retweets, and click-throughs on links and hashtags (we’ll cover those later). The engagement rate is calculated by dividing the engagement of all the tweets with the number of impressions they have made.

A great way to secure high engagement is to have—wait for it—engaging content. What does that mean? Well, it depends on your audience, but it’s been shown that people respond well to visuals such as videos and well-designed infographics. Depending on the tone you want to take, people also react well to humor, but be warned it has to be well done. Otherwise it will come off as pandering or as trying to jump on a bandwagon of a viral trend.

Find your voice as a brand and stick to it. If you can appeal to the human side of other people, then you have a guaranteed winner of a tweet.

Remember, no one is online and on social media to be bored. They’re looking to engage and be engaged. Be fun, be relevant, be what your followers want you to be, and you’ll be successful.

2. Impressions

Impressions means just that: how many impressions a tweet has had. In other words, how many people have seen that tweet. Or rather, how many times it has shown up on someone’s timeline—whether they follow you or not.

Much like engagement, when it comes to impressions, content is a key factor. In fact, the better the content is, the higher the engagement and the higher the chance that your impressions will skyrocket.

You don’t need to invest in a team of designers to create it, though it can help if you have a budget for something like that. You just need to find a niche that gets through to the people you want following you.

Don’t confuse Twitter Analytics impressions with reach, however. They’re not quite the same. Reach has to do with how many people could potentially see your post, and not how many have already seen it.

3. Tweet Activity

You can also see how your tweets are doing in chart form using various metrics of Twitter Analytics. You may choose an overall time span or you can track a tweet from the first time it was tweeted until now.

If you find that a particular tweet is doing well, for example, perhaps you could replicate its success by making something similar.

With this tool, you can also see at what times of day, week, or year your tweets have been doing well. Then, you can adjust your posting schedule if need be to get the most out of it—and increase all the other metrics along the way.

4. Twitter Followers

This Twitter Analytics tool is golden. With it, you can see who is following you and what kind of audience they are. Then you can either tailor your content to match your audience or you can create ads and content or launch hashtag campaigns to attract your desired audience.

Your followers are your ambassadors and if the right ones are following you, they can pass your message on to their own followers and so on and so on. As a brand, your goal is to be seen by as many eyes as possible. How else can this be done (for free) without the help of those who already follow you?

One other thing Twitter Analytics offers when it comes to followers is the ability to compare your followers with a rival company/brand.

If another Twitter account is doing better than you, you can research their accounts and see why. Then you can decide what you can do to do better.

Hashtags, Hashtags, Hashtags

Where once “location, location, location” was the motto of a successful business, it can be argued that now hashtags are what can bring customers/followers to you. With hashtag tracking, you can see which ones have the biggest reach and therefore attract more people to your site. And by hashtag tracking we also mean Twitter hashtag analytics.

In any case, hashtags help to improve impressions, reach, and engagement, especially if one goes viral. You can create a unique hashtag for your business or brand, or you can have one for an event you’re putting on. Encourage your followers, clients, or event attendees to use them in their own tweets, and you will soon be reaching thousands of potential followers—if not more.

Hashtag analytics for Twitter cannot be run via the main tool, but there are plenty of third-party sites that offer hashtag tracking.

One thing that can be done for hashtags using Twitter Analytics is looking at recurring trends under the Events tab.

Twitter trending topics
Google Analytics include a section with regular trending topics

Here you can see what hashtags appear often on the platform. Does one closely match what you’ve been tweeting about? Feel free to use it! However, don’t use a hashtag just because it’s popular and trending. Especially if it has nothing to do with your brand. Not only will it not have the effect you’re looking for, it will also more than likely ensure you will lose followers, not gain them.

Influencers – Your Potential Partners

Your followers may consist of some powerful (at least in the world of Twitter) people who have a larger audience with whom they can share their thoughts. These people are called influencers. Most often than not, they’re celebrities. Even if only social media ones, and they can be your doorway to becoming a well-known Twitter brand.

And guess what? Twitter Analytics helps you to uncover them!

Each month, the tool will highlight your biggest follower in terms of reach. Take a look at who it may be. There’s always room for collaboration there if your interests match. If anything, they could just love your tweets as they are and share them without prompt. That’s not very likely or common, but if that does become the case, make sure to favorite or retweet their tweets in return. A dialogue could sprout from there—the possibilities are endless.

Pay Up to Stay Up

As with many things, when you throw money at it, it gets better. That goes without saying for Twitter, too. If you see a particular tweet of yours is doing well with your current Twitter audience, or if you have a special piece of info that you’d like to get out to as wide an audience as possible as soon as possible, then it’s time to begin making smart and calculated investments in your tweets. Hashtags may help in some small way, but this method goes one step further and will for sure have the right people seeing your brand.

When you promote a tweet, you get to choose who your audience will be. Whether you want to focus on a specific geographical area or your current followers or the people who you’d want to be following you, you can. Plus, you can adjust the budget to your needs, to how much you want to pay. That way you’re in no danger of going over budget. You’re in control of the cost, and everything else for that matter.

The Twitter Analytics tool allows you to track these ads in much the same way, and you can see both organic and paid metrics so that you can compare between the two.

Keeping Track Long-term

If you’re the type of person that likes to have it all in writing, collated in one place, Twitter Analytics also offers reports that you can generate each month. These reports include all the Twitter metrics you need to know. You can archive these reports on your computer if you wish and use the data from them to create presentations for your boss (if you have one) or for colleagues and potential business partners.

Another great feature of being able to generate reports is the fact that you can look back at how well you were doing a year or two or even more back and note any upward or downward trends. Then you can readjust your approach to your account. And even if things are going well, you should always be thinking of new ways to market to your audience, because fresh content always wins. Twitter know it and keeps adding cool features to engage with followers.

Twitter Ads
Twitter Ads features help increase the tweets engagement

The longer you use Twitter, the richer your data set, and in time you will be an expert in your followers’ behaviour.

Twitter, your marketing ally

The ultimate goal is to be proactive, not reactive. Once you start anticipating what it is exactly that will draw people in, then you will be able to expand your brand, eventually even earning the elusive blue checkmark that shows everyone that you’re verified.

All in all, if Twitter is your social media platform of choice, then Twitter Analytics will be your greatest ally. And until Twitter itself starts offering the option, you can also do hashtag tracking with hashtag analytics for Twitter through outside sites. Twitter Analytics tools may be your next search.

For now, do things just right and you’ll be swimming in Twitter followers in no time. You may even hit on a nerve and go viral (hopefully in a positive way), which will only make your brand stronger.