Knowing which tweets have generated a lot of activity in the past helps you craft better tweets in the future. Twitter actually supplies all of the information you need for free, you just have to know how to access it. For this article, we will be using Twitter Ads. While you can use it for ads, the functionality we want today is the analytics that shows us how our posts are working.
#1: View Twitter Data
If you have a Twitter account, then you already have access to Twitter ads. Simply go to https://ads.twitter.com/, and sign in with your regular Twitter credentials. The first time you log in, you’ll have to pick your country and time zone. Double check your settings as you won’t be able to change them later.
Once logged in, go over to the Analytics tab and then click on Tweet Activity. As this is the first time you are using the tool, it may not have any activity and will show 0 results. Once you start making more tweets and generating activity, you’ll get more data back. The default setting is to show you data from the past 28 days. The data you can see on this page includes your tweets, number of impressions, engagements, link clicks, retweets, favorites, and replies. So as you can see, it has all of the data you could ever want. The example below shows where to click.
You are able to change the date range and view up to 92 days at a time. The only caveat is that you can only go back 13 months.
#2: Export Twitter Data
Click the Export button in the top right corner of your window just below your Twitter icon. Select the first batch of 92 days and click Export Data. You will download an excel file containing the data for the date range specified. Adjust the date range to the next batch of 92 days. Repeat until you have reached the number of reports you want, up to 13 months. You want to try to get at least 4 months of data for accurate results.
Then open up each Excel file. Choose one as the main file and copy the data from the rest into it.
You’ll want to keep the title row on the main file, but for the other files, delete the title row and just copy the data.
Once you have the main file containing all of your Twitter data, you can see what it has to say. It’ll tell you the best time to tweet to reach the most people, the types of tweets that consistently generate the most activity from your audience and exactly how many engagements your account has gotten in the past year.
To make the file easier to work with, freeze the top row. First, click on the View tab and find Freeze Panes. Click on it and then select Freeze Top Row. Now you can scroll up and down, and keep the titles at the top.
#3: Using the Data: When to Tweet
An impression is the number of views the tweet has received. To find the best time to tweet to your audience, we’ll want to see when a tweet received the most impressions.
Open your main file and sort your data. As we want to show the tweets with the most views at the top, we’ll sort the data by the number of impressions descending.
To sort a sheet:
- Select a cell in the column you wish to sort by. For this we want the impressions column.
- Select the Data tab on the Ribbon, then click the Ascending command to Sort A to Z, or the Descending command to Sort Z to A. In our example, we’ll click the Descending command.
- The worksheet will be sorted by the selected column.
Once you have reordered your data, you’ll find the dates and times of the tweets that got the most impressions. If you see a trend based on day of the week or time of day, you have found the peak times for your tweets to go out to be seen by the most people. These are the times you should probably post your tweets to get the largest audience possible.
Review the top 50 tweets, and you’ll most likely find at least a few time trends. You need to tweet consistently throughout the day and over a long period to get an accurate assessment. The more data you have, the more accurate your data will be.
#4: Using the Data: What to Tweet
Now that you know when to tweet, we want to know what to tweet, what do our viewers like the to see. We will again sort the data, but this time we want to sort by the Engagements column. Using the same steps above, sort the Engagements column descending.
The top 50 tweets will be the tweets that your audience finds most appealing. Twitter defines engagements as retweets, replies, favorites and any kind of click. The more actions a person takes after seeing your tweet, the more engagements will be counted. If you see your audience likes a certain type of post the best, you should focus your energy on those tweets.
Now that you have seen what data is available from Twitter ads, find time to go through these reports to see what works best for you. The improvement to your Twitter marketing will be worth it.
You’ll want to continuously check your data on a regular schedule to make sure your audience has not changed. You wouldn’t want to spend a few months making tweets that no longer engage your audience. The internet moves fast, and analytics will help you keep up. The more data you have available, the most accurate your results will be. If you are just starting off, set a schedule to send out tweets throughout the day so you can build your data.
What do you think? Do you use Twitter analytics? Have you used other tools to analyze your data? What data do you find most helpful? Please share your thoughts and suggestions in the comments.