Twitter Analytics: How To Analyze and Use your Knowledge
Twitter analytics and knowing how to use them can change your social media game.
Whether it’s identifying which messages resonate, determining successful campaigns or spotting holes in your customer service, the data at your fingertips can turn seemingly random social interactions into strategy-changing insights.
Not sure where to get started? This guide will help make Twitter analytics much more manageable for you and your team.
What are Twitter analytics?
Twitter analytics compiles all the behaviors and actions audiences take when they come across your posts or profile–the clicks, follows, likes, expands and more–and breaks down that data to help you track performance and refine your strategy.
This data is critical for understanding who’s interacting with your Tweets and how your account is performing overall. Even if you log in daily and generally understand how the account is performing, it’s essential to put numbers to those feelings.
How to access Twitter analytics
Every Twitter profile comes with free access to the native Twitter analytics tool. Here’s how you can access the analytics dashboard for your page:
Step 1. From your Twitter dashboard, click on the “More” button on the left-hand panel. This will open a list of additional options such as settings and privacy, among others.
Step 2. Select the “Analytics” option. This will instantly bring you to your native Twitter analytics dashboard. Here, you can get an overview of how your profile and Tweets have been performing. The 28-day summary section gives you an overview of your performance. This will show you metrics related to Tweets, Tweet impressions, profile visits, mentions and followers.
Step 3. Scroll down and you’ll get to see the monthly breakdown of your performance. For each month, you can see your top Tweet, top mention, top follower and top media Tweet. You also get a summary of the number of Tweets, Tweet impressions, profile visits, mentions and new followers.
Step 4. Click on the “View all Tweet activity” button under your “Top Tweet” section. This will open more advanced analytics on how your Tweets have performed.
You’ll see a graph comparing how your Tweet impressions changed over the chosen period. You can also manually set the period you want to analyze.
Who are Twitter analytics for?
Anyone with an interest in how their Twitter account is performing should use Twitter analytics.
Check out how the Chicago Bulls use social data to take the guesswork out of what they do.
Analytics are most useful to those with a vested interest in Tweet performance and engagement rates. This means: practitioners, managers and agencies.
Those who are interested in building their brand–company or personal–will find Twitter analytics helpful in determining the type of posts that are most interesting to their followers. These insights are crucial for optimizing their Twitter marketing strategies to maximize results.
Twitter analytics for practitioners
For practitioners, advanced Tweet activity analytics help you understand how your Twitter posts are performing. You get to drill down to the singular Tweet level to see each Tweet’s metrics.
You can also see your top Tweets to see which ones seem to resonate well with your audience. These insights will help you inform and optimize your strategy.
Twitter analytics for managers
Managers will find Twitter analytics helpful because it measures the social ROI of paid and organic efforts. You get a comprehensive view of areas where you need to improve and understand how well your team is performing.
Twitter analytics for agencies
Finally, agencies can easily export the data and share it with clients. Twitter gives you the option to export data by Tweet or by day. So, you can build reports specific to business needs and help clients visualize the impact of your work.
What metrics can you track with Twitter analytics?
Let’s be honest, social media has its own language.
It’s easy to get confused and overwhelmed by mentions, hashtags, impressions, interactions and everything in between.
The bottom line is you can’t measure something you don’t understand. So here are some of the most important metrics that you’ll find within the native Twitter analytics dashboard and third-party Twitter analytics tools.
The total number of times any user could have potentially seen a brand’s name or message.
The number of users who saw an impression of your post in their timeline.
A Twitter user’s interaction with another user. This can come in the form of mentions, Retweets, favorites and new followers.
Engagement rates are metrics that track how actively involved with your content your audience is. Engaged consumers interact with brands through “likes,” comments and social sharing.
The engagement rate is a metric often used in analyzing the efficacy of brand campaigns. People who spend time interacting with videos, updates and blogs are more likely to convert into paying customers. Engagement rates also have subset measurements like “sharing metrics” which highlight the impact of your word-of-mouth marketing.
The total number of times a link was clicked in a Tweet.
The total number of instances where a Twitter user that is talking to you, or about you, mentions you in their tweet.
The number of Twitter users that are subscribed to your updates at any given time.
Percent of inbound messages you respond to that warrant a response.
The amount of time it takes your business to respond to inbound messages.
The number of users who visited your profile within a given timeframe.
The Tweet that earned the most impressions during a given month.
The mention that earned the greatest number of engagements during a given month.
Your most popular new follower based on the number of followers they have.
Top media Tweet
Your media Tweet—one that has an image, video or gif—that earned the most impressions during a given month.
Retweets without comments
The number of people who Retweeted you without adding a comment.
The number of likes that your Tweets received during a specified timeframe. It’s the small heart icon below every Tweet.
The number of replies that your Tweets received during a specified timeframe.
How to maximize Twitter analytics with Sprout Social
Twitter analytics provide a limitless supply of information to create better content, reach new audiences and improve user experiences. Here’s how you can use Sprout Social to maximize the insights from your Twitter analytics and inform your social strategy.
1. Identify your best content
Look at all the Tweets you’ve sent and identify which content has performed best. Use those insights to help you create content more likely to resonate with your audience.
Access this data from the Post Performance Report. This gives you an overview of post-level performance across all your profiles. You can filter the report to only show the Twitter profile you want to review.
You’ll see metrics like impressions and potential reach. In this report, you’ll also see the engagements and engagement rate per impression for each post.
With this data, you can identify why these posts were so successful.
- Find common themes in those top Tweets. Did the Tweet contain a hashtag, mention, or question? If so, think about including those in the future.
- Were there particular days or times that seem to work best with your audience? If so, schedule around those times in the future.
- Export your top Tweets and create a word cloud to more easily visualize messages that resonate.
2. Uncover trends in performance
Your Twitter Profiles Report can reveal how your performance has changed over time. From your performance summary, you can track metrics such as:
- Other post clicks
- Post link clicks
Changes in these metrics could indicate whether your strategy is working.
The Twitter Profiles Report also includes a helpful graph of your audience growth during the reporting period. This can help you visualize how you gained or lost followers over time. Compare this against your strategy and activities to uncover patterns. For example, did you gain lots of followers while running a certain campaign?
3. Analyze your competition
The Twitter Competitors Report lets you track and compare fundamental metrics against any Twitter profile. This gives you a comprehensive view of your competitors’ performance. You can then compare these metrics against your own profiles. This also allows you to benchmark your performance against the industry average.
Using this report, you can visualize how your follower size and audience growth compare to that of your competition.
Use the Profiles tab in the Twitter Competitors Report to get a side-by-side look at how you stack up to the competition. You’ll be able to compare Twitter stats such as:
- Engagement rate per impression
When you have enough data, analyze your competitors and think through how you can differentiate your presence. Think about questions like:
- Are they growing faster than you?
- When was the last time they posted?
- Are there long spans of time between each post?
- Do they respond to comments?
4. Report across multiple Twitter profiles
Looking at the performance of individual Twitter profiles is important, but you can also analyze multiple profiles at once if you have them. This provides additional data to help guide your strategy.
Use the Overview in the Profile Performance Report to get a summary of your performance across your Twitter profiles. This will collectively calculate the impressions, engagements, engagement rate and link clicks you earned across those profiles. The audience growth chart lets you compare how each of those profiles gained followers.
Additionally, you can also use the Profiles tab to compare stats across your Twitter profiles.
Analyze all your Twitter efforts at a high level to get a better sense of your overall presence. Identify which profiles are outperforming and which need more love.
5. Understand your Twitter followers
You can use Listening Topic Insights to view a detailed demographic breakdown of people interacting with a specific topic.
You can then understand whether your target audience is participating in relevant conversations. The device demographics give you a sense of how people like to communicate when discussing a given topic.
6. Identify advocates and Twitter influencers
Using the Profile Overview chart in your Listening Demographics can help identify influencers. It shows you which profiles are engaging in conversations around a given topic. This will help you uncover key influencers and advocates on the topic.
From this breakdown, you can easily view the gender, age, volume and engagements for each profile. Sort the list by volume and engagements to see which profiles are dominating the conversation.
From there you can easily start adding more names and faces to your influencer marketing strategy.
7. Discover hashtag and topic trends
Adding hashtags or jumping on hot topic trends can be a powerful way to bootstrap your posts. But it’s critical those hashtags and topics are relevant to your brand.
We have an all-in-one guide on hashtag analytics, including how to find and use them, but here is a quick summary.
Navigate to Sprout’s Twitter Trends Report to see the topics and hashtags that people frequently mention with your company’s handle. Use this to inform your content and hashtag strategy for better visibility and engagement.
For example, if a company is frequently mentioned on posts asking about “hours,” they may want to make that info more accessible within their profiles or business listings.
Or, if people are frequently mentioning your brand with the hashtag “#PerfectMorning,” adding that to your post could drive higher engagement and impressions.
8. Monitor hashtags and keywords over time
Not only can you surface the best topics and hashtags, but you can also track those keywords and hashtags over time.
Sprout’s Twitter Keyword Report helps you analyze keywords and quantify total volume, average volume per day and growth as well as a sampling of those Tweets and engagements.
You’ll find information on the volume of each keyword, the top accounts that used those keywords and the drill-down of metrics on each keyword. These reports are not only useful for creating new campaigns but also for monitoring how well a campaign is performing.
9. Visualize Twitter campaigns
Are you and your team creating entire Twitter campaigns? Sprout lets you track both organic and paid campaigns on Twitter.
Tag each outbound or inbound social media message with a single or multiple campaign designations. See the following example for “Iced Coffee,” “Lemonade” and “Sunny Sale.”
Then track the entire campaign’s success within a single dashboard with metrics like:
- Average messages sent per day
- Total sent
- Average messages received per day
- Total received
- Growth trends
Start growing your Twitter
Analyzing your social performance regularly enables you to find out what works and what doesn’t. This ultimately means you can make smarter business decisions. In a small business setting, being able to quickly pivot is always a plus.
Once you’ve aligned goals and determined which metrics are key for your business, it’s time to start tracking. Don’t let the numbers or seemingly massive amounts of data scare you—with proper preparation, the right tools and a few “best practices,” you’ll get the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to tackling Twitter.
Sign up for a personalized demo Sprout Social to see how it aligns with your Twitter strategy.