There are various and extensive reporting through third-party management tools, however these three key Twitter metrics should form the basis of any analysis.
Replies & Mentions – These are essentially the same thing, with the only difference being the placement of your @handle. Replies will be in response to your tweet and your @handle will appear at the beginning of the tweet, while mentions will have your @handle appear anywhere within the tweet. Each is important as it represents direct interaction with other users. The higher the number of replies and mentions you receive, the higher your level of engagement. The best way to assess this is by dividing the number of replies and mentions by the number of tweets within a specific period.
Retweets – This metric shows the number of users that have shared their content with their followers thereby “retweeting” it and is an important statistic to track as it highlights what content is engaging your followers. Higher retweeting frequency indicates members in your community are interested in the information that you are distributing and share it with their own networks which helps expand your reach and grows your online community. One thing to also consider while analyzing this metric is determining what content is being shared – whether original content by your organization, existing content of others, or whether the type of tweets include links or pictures.
Follower vs. Following Ratio – There has been much debate as to what a healthy ratio is between those you follow and those that follow you. Certainly the purpose of Twitter is to connect with others that share the same interest to engage them and make them a supporter and potential donor in the future. To achieve this, one has to actively follow those that tweet cause-related content and hope that they show interest and will follow back. The ideal ratio will be dependent on the stage your Twitter initiative is in. Newer users will need to start with a higher ratio of following vs. followers in an attempt to grow their community, while established users should strive for a 1 to 1 ratio as this improves reputation and signals a user that will likely follow back and get to know other users.
The key in analyzing Twitter metrics is ensuring that the time you dedicate to the platform produces the desired results and netting a healthy return on investment. Keep in mind that as with most social media initiatives, your Twitter efforts extend beyond metrics and hard numbers and that building trust with your audience and brand recognition are also of tremendous value.
Are there other metrics that you use to evaluate your Twitter initiatives? Leave us a comment and connect with us through Twitter @Miratel or @Desi_Cabrera. Happy tweeting!