Happy 5th Birthday Twitter. In just five short years, Twitter has completely revolutionised communications, marketing, branding and news.
We now produce a billion tweets per week.
We’re alerted to breaking news, disasters, celebrity deaths, political unrest and emergency procedures through Twitter. We talk, real-time, to the CEO’s of major corporations and expect them to pay attention to what we have to say about their brands. We rapidly spread the word about political unrest and change the colours of our avatars and our home country information in solidarity with oppressed people to help them keep their anonymity in countries where they could be in harms way just for Tweeting. We share, and sometimes overshare, from our computers and our mobile devices, a billion times per day, all in 140 characters or less. Books have been written and published on Twitter. Poetry, especially Haiku, is flourishing on Twitter.
In short, we’ve fallen head over heals for the micro blog. We’ve got a lot to say in a few short characters. But as much fun as Twitter can be, the power brands have figured out how to utilise Twitter to drive customer actions, to create brand loyal communities and to enhance their business reputation.
A good business strategy always includes listening and monitoring. So in honour of Twitter’s 5th birthday today, I’ve compiled a short list of sites that will give you insight into your own Twitter habits. These stats can provide you with a clear picture of when you tweet, what keywords you use most, how influential you are in your Twitter circle and help you determine your course of action moving forward.
Tweetstats: This site helps you graph your Twitter patterns such as number of tweets per day, tweets per month, tweets per hour and provides a great visual look that can help you understand your patterns. If you’ve been effective with these patterns, you can replicate them. If you’re struggling with your Twitter marketing, then you knowledge about your previous patterns can help you adjust. The bright, full colour charts are great for presentations, too.
Klout: Klout is a social influence score based on proprietary metrics and takes into consideration your influence style, how often your network retweets or interacts with you, the influential scores of your close network followers, unique mentions, number of followers and also factors in your Facebook community, blog subscribers and your LinkedIn tribe. In the past year, some high profile events have been known to use Klout scores to determine which bloggers to invite to parties and press events. It’s clear that the ability to measure social influence is important to companies and paying attention to yours, might be worth your time. Klout gives you suggestions on areas in which you might put more focus to raise your score. TwitterCounter: This site gives you a visual map of your recent follower acquisition, a ranking among all Twitter users, predicts your growth over the next 15 days and gives you an estimate of the time it will take you to double your following given your historical data. A paid version will give you significantly more information and this site is well worth a look. I particularly like the live link on the right hand side to follow other Twitter users who have recently visited the site.
TwitterGrader: This site gives you a grade from 0 to 100, uses their own algorithm to measure your power, reach and authority or your actual impact in the Twitterverse. It looks at the number of followers, the power of those followers, the number of updates from your account, the currency of those updates, your follower to following ratio, the engagement between you and your followers and then calculates a grade.
Hootsuite: Hootsuite is a web-based Twitter management tool that allows you to monitor multiple Twitter streams in a glance. It also allows you to pre-schedule tweets to go out to your account at different times of the day. Hootsuite just rolled out a new suite of very useful analytic tools to help clients monitor their account activity. Ow.ly is the Hootsuite link shortener and you can now print out and share with clients, a nifty colour pie chart analysis of exactly how many people clicked on a given link. This is useful for tracking the effectiveness of your messaging and the actions that message was able to create. The “Quick Stats” report gives user, at a glance, their top referrers, percentage of followers from any given country, and their most popular shared links. These reports can be exported, customised and shared.
Twitterholic: This simple site takes a look at the date you joined Twitter, where you rank in terms of followers against others in their database and also gives you a ranking based on your location. This could help location based accounts see where they stand in their market.
Twitter, itself, gives you some great ways to monitor your marketing effectiveness. Check your @replies, your DM’s and your @mentions daily for real-time valuable information about the effectiveness of your marketing message.
Using a variety of sites to listen and monitor your marketing and branding efforts on Twitter will give you an effective way to develop your own bench marks and success metrics. The key is to monitor, measure, and adjust your business marketing strategy based on the valuable information that these and other sites can provide. If you found this article helpful, I’d appreciate hearing from you. Please leave a comment, ask a question or share any other sites you like to use, and be sure to wish Twitter a happy birthday today.