This post was first published on Jan 23, 2015 and we updated it with the latest information and screenshots of Twitter analytics.
Social media marketing and data analysis go hand-in-hand. Without identifying what part of your strategy is working and what is not, you cannot improve, grow, and find more success.
Tracking, viewing, and analyzing data associated with your accounts is vital to the success of your social media marketing campaigns. Thus the importance of Twitter analytics.
Luckily, we don’t have to look far to find useful analytics about our activity and engagement on Twitter.
Twitter offers a free tool right within your account. I noticed people often search for Twitter analytics free…so let’s start with what is free.
Twitter Analytics Free from Twitter
To visit your Twitter analytics go to https://analytics.twitter.com/.
I am not sure if Twitter has this up and running by default for everyone yet. In the past Twitter stated that you have to either become an advertiser or be using Twitter Cards. Just note that you don’t need to engage in any paid advertising to access the free Twitter analytics.
Just log in with your account and Twitter will then begin to collect and populate data. It may take a few days from the launch for interesting data to start to show.
If you are setting up a new Twitter account, set a reminder to launch your analytics in two weeks — as I believe it is only available to accounts at least 14 days old.
Twitter Analytics Overview
At top you can see an overall review of your success for the month. You can gain insight on your best tweets, audience growth, and overall reach.
Here are my stats for September:
Learn About Your Tweets
You can click on the Tweet Highlights link to display stats about your tweets and see what tweets had the most engagement. I see my ThoughtFlame tweets have performed well.
Data You Can Collect
You can view data related to your total tweets or click on a individual tweet to see specific tweet information. Useful metrics include:
- Impressions: number of times your tweet was viewed
- Engagements: accumulation of likes, media engagements, profile clicks, retweets, and link clicks
- Engagement Rate: the number of tweet engagements divided by the amount of tweet impressions
- Link Clicks: how many times the link in your tweet was clicked
- Retweets: number of times your tweet was retweeted
- Likes: total number your tweet was liked
Note you can click on a link in this view and get detailed information on that tweet.
You can change date ranges using the options on the top-right corner of the page. This is also where you export data to track and compare data over time.
How to Use Your Twitter Analytics Information
Look at the data and ask yourself questions.
- What topics receive the most engagement? Should I tweet more about that topic? Do I see patterns?
- Which type of tweets receive the most interest? Do they include images? Videos? Links to article? How can I incorporate those elements into future tweets?
- How does my recent performance compare to past efforts? What change prompted the spike or decline?
- Which tweet should I promote? If a tweet had a high organic engagement rate, it is likely that it will be well received as a promotion. I believe in Larry Kim’s philosophy of promoting your unicorns.
- What time of the day did my tweets get the highest engagement? Should I schedule a tweet every day around that time? Should I stop scheduling tweets at low-performing times?
Look for patterns in tweets that received high engagement and direct your strategy to incorporate the same characteristics of those successful tweets.
Use It To Learn About Your Followers
Data under the Audience tab is helpful for learning about your audience and creating a strategy that will connect to their interests and background.
Data You Can Collect
In addition to being able to see how many followers you have, you can see:
- Interests: the top interests of your followers
- Occupation: it would be nice if this was more detailed, what you get is generic
- Gender: percentage of men and women following you
- Income & Net Worth: use a grain of salt on this, as Twitter admits they get this info by a partner mashup.
Tools to Supplement Twitter Analytics
If you want to take your Twitter analysis to another level, there are a variety of other tools out there to help you track your data.
While Buffer was created initially for scheduling tweets, they now have good Twitter analytics. If you already are using Buffer, definitely check out your Twitter stats within their tool.
I have been using Sprout Social for years now to manage my social media messaging. Using Sprout you can monitor Twitter analytics along with your Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google+ usage in one space.
Followerwonk is my favorite resource for understanding what is happening in a Twitter account. The features in Followerwonk make insights more readily available than Twitter’s free analytics.
Their follower map makes it easy to see where your Twitter audience is. Apparently I am not very big in Hawaii.
Another valuable Followerwonk feature is the bio word cloud for Twitter followers and a Twitter location cloud. Looks for trends in your Twitter audience. Some may surprise you.
You can also dig into your follower list and order them in a number of ways. I tried organizing Twitter followers for @ThoughtFlame by influence and had a pleasant surprise.
I was pleased to learn about some of followers at ThoughtFlame I was not aware of. Some fairly heavy hitters are following that account.
Donald Trump Jr., Soledad O’Brien, Van Jones are following along with authors who books line my shelves such as Tony Robbins, Tom Peters, and Tim Ferris. Wow!
Another feature I like to use is Compare Users. Here is a chart comparing @ThoughtFlame to a similar account.
I can see that @Quotes has us beat with their audience size and growth, but our tweets are performing better.
That is the it for the TribeBoost Guide to Twitter Analytics. What other tools and programs do you use to organize, analyze, and optimize?