As social media continues to be a critical component to nonprofit fundraising and engagement plans, maintaining a presence is no longer enough to meet established goals and get the highest return on investment. Measuring and understanding statistics and analytics help strengthen your initiatives by verifying who your audience is, how engaged they are and what content is generating action. Recently I wrote about Understanding Facebook Analytics for Stronger Nonprofit Fundraising and Community Engagement as part of our Social Media Series. Many organizations have integrated Twitter as part of their digital marketing plans and many have been successful in growing their communities and increasing engagement. They key in doing so is measuring your impact by reviewing the platform’s analytics.
Unfortunately, Twitter doesn’t provide analytics directly but there are several third-party management tools that provide useful statistics so nonprofits can see the full picture of their Twitter initiatives.
Twitonomy – This user-friendly interface is simple and visually appealing, making it less intimidating than many analytic reporting. The twitter management tool is robust, completely free and provides a lot of useful information. In addition to in-depth tweet analysis, the platform also tracks mentions, re-tweets, most active users that are engaging with your content, and detailed Twitter information of those you follow and those who are following you.
Tweetstats – The platform provides an overview of many user statistics including your own tweet patterns, top key words and hash tags used and follower statistics. A very simple platform that is easy to navigate and also free. The only drawback is the information is not exportable for more in-depth analysis, but definitely works as a resource for a quick overview of your profiles activity and can be combined with analysis from other third-party management tools.
Twentyfeet – Providing extensive analytics, the platform is free for two services with additional minimal charges to add more services. In addition to tracking analytics for Twitter and Facebook, it can also track YouTube, Google Analytics, bit.ly and Myspace. The Twitter statistics are very detailed from tracking reputation and influence indicators, to following, conversation and list analysis. The information is also exportable to CSV or Excel allowing for further analysis.
Foller.me – Another free tool which not only provides insights on your own Twitter profile but can also be used to gain insight into other Twitter topics, mentions, hash-tags, followers and location. The application guides the user with a helpful explanation of each section along the left-hand side, thereby not having to try to interpret the results of the statistics provided. The tool can be used strategically and learn more about prospective donors but also the industry and the competition.
TweepsMap – An incredibly simple tool which simply displays the number of followers on a world map. This tool is especially beneficial to nonprofits that have an international or national profile. The map can be zoomed to display state/province and city views. Having an overview glance of where your followers are located can be beneficial in customizing content relevant to their geographical area or can help in determining the best times to be tweeting.
Once you have determined which management tool is the best fit for your organization, understanding the data that it provides ensures that you are optimizing the engagement benefits that Twitter can provide. My next post will review the statistics that are most important to review and understand. In the meantime have a look at our Social Media Series for other posts dedicated to the Twitter platform.