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TweetReach Tip: Improve your snapshot report search query

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Our customers often ask the question, “What exactly can I search for on TweetReach?” We want to make sure you get the most out of your snapshot reports, so here’s everything you need to know about queries.

For all snapshot report searches, keep in mind that shorter queries work better: under 70 characters, or 6-8 words. Use the most specific terms possible to find what you’re looking for and consider if you need a particular phrase; if so put it in quotes (“peanut butter banana”) so it will appear exactly in that order. Be sure to account for misspellings or nicknames that might apply to the phrase, campaign or brand name that you’re searching for.

Our snapshot reports and Trackers work a little differently. Snapshot reports collect data from Twitter’s search API, which includes up to 1,500 tweets from the past week, and Trackers rely on the real-time, full-coverage Twitter stream from Gnip. In both, you can search for basically anything that appears in a tweet, including Twitter names, terms or phrases, hashtags, etc… You can also narrow the search for any of those things by adding a time frame, filtering for links or a particular language, and more.

Search for tweets related to an account:

  • username – search for tweets to, from and about a specific Twitter user (e.g. tweetreachapp)
  • @username – search for tweets mentioning or RTing a specific Twitter user (e.g. @tweetreachapp)
  • from:username – search only for tweets from a specific Twitter user (e.g. from:tweetreachapp)
  • to:username – search only for tweets directed to a specific Twitter user (e.g. to:tweetreachapp)

Search for tweets containing a particular term or phrase, including a #hashtag:

  • term1 term2 – search for tweets containing both term1 and term2 in any order (e.g. twitter metrics)
  • term1 OR term2 – search for tweets containing either term1 or term2 (e.g. analytics OR metrics)
  • “term1 term2” – search for tweets containing the phrase “term1 term2” (e.g. “twitter metrics”)
  • term1 -term2 – search for tweets containing term1 but not including term2 (e.g. twitter -facebook)

Put a more specific filter on your search for an account, term or phrase:

  • since:YYYY-MM-DD – search only for tweets after a specific date in UTC (e.g. since:2012-12-12)
  • until:YYYY-MM-DD – search only for tweets before a specific date in UTC (e.g. until:2012-12-12)
  • filter:links – search only for tweets containing links
  • lang:NN – to search for only tweets in a particular language (e.g. lang:en for only English tweets, more info about languages here)

For instance, let’s say you want to search for tweets that contain the words “banana metrics”, and you only want the ones with those exact words in that exact order, starting from a certain date. In that case you’d enter “banana metrics”- in the quotes to get the exact phrase- into the search bar, adding since:2012-12-12 to the query. So it would look like this:

“banana metrics” since:2012-12-12

And your report would return to you all the tweets containing the term “banana metrics” since the 12th of December, 2012. (If you want to get data about “banana metrics” from last week, you’ll have to get a quote on our Historical Analytics, available separately from reports or the Trackers that come with a TweetReach Pro subscription.)

Still have questions? We have answers!

Get more details on what you can search for in a TweetReach report in our help forums; there’s also a breakdown of what you can do with a snapshot report by question. We’ve also written on the blog about using snapshot reports to measure the reach of a Twitter account (here’s the help forum post on that as well) and the reach of a particular tweet, two options to search for.

If you still have questions don’t be afraid to drop us a line. We’re here to help!

Written by Sarah

December 10th, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Posted in Help

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TweetReach Tip: Why some tweets generate fewer impressions

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On Twitter, replies are handled differently than regular tweets. An @reply is a tweet sent to a specific user, beginning with that user’s Twitter handle. Like this:

Replies are only received by the users who follow both the sender and the receipient. The above tweet was delivered to the 6 Twitter accounts who follow both @tweetreachapp and @Melaina25, not to all of @tweetreachapp’s 4,300+ followers.

So, if there’s a contributor or tweet in your TweetReach snapshot report or Tracker that has only generated a few impressions, even though you know the account has hundreds or thousands of followers, then the tweet is most likely an @reply. The purpose of a reply is to continue a conversation between two Twitter accounts, and as such, replies are only delivered to users who follow both the Twitter accounts involved in the conversation. Twitter does this to keep your stream from getting overly cluttered with irrelevant conversations you’re not involved in. So even if an account has thousands of followers, an @reply will only appear to users who follow both the sender and recipients, and will generate as many impressions as there are common followers.

There’s more on how Twitter handles replies on their blog. Basically, using your Twitter client’s reply button or arrow will limit the people who receive your tweet to only users who follow both accounts in the discussion, even if you add a space, period or other punctuation in front of the username. If you want a tweet to be delivered to all your followers, do not use the reply button and do not start the tweet with a username.

 

Written by Jenn D

September 4th, 2012 at 9:51 am

Posted in Help

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Today’s TweetReach Tip: When tweets are available for analysis

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One of the questions we’re often asked is when tweets are available for analysis (and how long they’re accessible). We hear a lot of questions like:

  • Can I get tweets from last month? What about last year?
  • I have an event coming up – what’s the best way to measure those tweets?
  • What if I want to analyze only tweets from the past two days?
  • Can I track tweets for a month or longer?

So, here’s our answer to those questions. We have several different ways at TweetReach to access tweets, depending on when they were posted and how many tweets there are. First, we just need to know the answer to one question: when were your tweets posted? 

My tweets will be posted in the future

If your tweets will be posted anytime in the future, then we have the most flexibility for reporting. Anytime you can plan ahead for your Twitter tracking, it will be both easier and cheaper to get the tweet analytics you need. If your tweets will be posted in the future, whether it’s later today or not until next month, we have two ways to measure those tweets:

  1. Set up a Tracker before tweets are posted
  2. Run a snapshot report after tweets are posted

TweetReach Tracker will capture all tweets in real time, as they are posted to Twitter. So this means you need to set it up before tweets start going out. Trackers are perfect for longer or higher-volume campaigns, as well as for more in-depth metrics. Trackers don’t have any tweet or time limits*, so they can track as many tweets as you want, for as long as you want. We have some customers who have been tracking – and archiving – their tweets for two years! Trackers are available through TweetReach Pro.

The other option is to run a snapshot report after your event or campaign is over and all relevant tweets have been posted. A snapshot report will include basic Twitter analytics for up to 1,500 tweets from the past 7-10 days (whichever comes first). Snapshot reports are great for smaller, lower-volume, or shorter campaigns. You can run a snapshot report anytime at tweetreach.com. The first 50 tweets are free, and the full snapshot is $20.

So, set up a Tracker before your event if you’re expecting more than 1,500 tweets or want to track them for more than a week. Run a snapshot report after your event if you’re expecting fewer than 1,500 tweets over a week or less.

My tweets were posted in the past week

If the time period for your tweets is within the past few daysrun a one-time snapshot report. A snapshot TweetReach report will include up to 1,500 tweets from the past 7-10 days. This varies a little from query to query, but most are around a week. You can also limit these snapshots to specific dates from the past week using date filters. A snapshot including up to 50 tweets is free, and a full snapshot will be $20.

My tweets were posted more than a week ago

If the tweets were posted within the past month, then we can access those tweets through a custom TweetReach historical report. This works best for a single day or few day period from the past month, but can include tweets for up to 30 days back from today. These historical reports range in price, depending on the length of time and number of tweets being analyzed, but start at $200, and include full coverage of all tweets from your time period.

Contact us to discuss your specific needs and we can give you a precise quote. TweetReach Back is really best for Twitter analytics emergencies – when a client or coworker absolutely needs numbers and didn’t remember to tell you until now.

*Our lower-level TweetReach Pro plans have some soft tweet limits, but most people will never reach those limits. Please check with us if you want to know about these limits or if you plan on tracking a high-volume event.

Written by Jenn D

June 13th, 2012 at 11:47 am

Posted in Help

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Using TweetReach to determine the reach of a tweet

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You already know TweetReach reports are great for measuring the reach of hashtags and Twitter accounts, but how about an individual tweet? What if you want to analyze the reach of a tweet (and any retweets of or replies to that tweet)? Our reports can do that, too! In fact, that’s where our name comes from and one of the original problems we set out to solve more than three years ago. Tweet. Reach. TweetReach.

There are a few options for measuring the reach of a tweet. You can paste the entire text of the tweet into the search box. Since Twitter works best with shorter search queries that’s ideal if you have a shorter tweet. And if you have a longer tweet, you can select a few unique words or a phrase from the tweet to search for.

Let’s try it with this tweet from @Disney.

Since this is a pretty short tweet, we can search for the full tweet text (minus the URL to keep it simple): disney #DisneyFact: An estimated one million bubbles were drawn in the making of The Little Mermaid. We also included the original Twitter handle, minus the @ sign, to be sure we’re catching all attributed retweets of the original tweet. Here’s the TweetReach report for this query:

This report includes 108 total tweets, which includes the original tweet. So that’s 107 retweets. However, you can see that the original tweet only has 73 actual retweets, according to the Most Retweeted Tweets section. What’s going on?

This is where it gets a little messy. Some people will retweet a tweet with Twitter’s official RT button (we call this a new-style or automated retweet). Some will copy and paste the tweet and add “RT @username” to retweet (old-style or manual retweet). Some will modify the original tweet by adding their own commentary or abbreviating the text (modified retweet or MT). Some will simply quote the tweet without adding any RT language (quoted RT). Twitter typically only associates that first type (new-style RTs) with an original tweet to count them as retweets.

But in a TweetReach report, if a tweet starts with “RT @username”, regardless of how that retweet was generated (new-style or old-style), it will count as an official retweet. But if there’s anything in front of that retweet, such as commentary or other characters, then it will not count as a retweet, but it will show up in a report for that tweet. So that’s why the above report only shows 73 actual retweets of the original tweet, but there are 108 total tweets in the report. One of those tweets is the original tweet, 73 are official retweets, and the 34 remaining tweets are modified or quoted retweets. So the full reach of this @Disney Little Mermaid tweet and all its various retweets is 1,322,791.

A few more examples:

Search for: SFGiants amazing pic bradmangin melky cabrera 7th inning

Search for: wired “Hot New Characters Will Invigorate Game of Thrones”

Search for: tweetreachapp measure share of voice on twitter four steps

Tips for measuring the reach of a tweet:

  • Keep search queries short
  • Include handles without the @ sign
  • Put exact phrases in quotation marks
  • Select unique words for your query
  • Leave out URLs to keep it simple

And that’s how you can use a TweetReach report to analyze the reach of a tweet. Try it for yourself! And if you’re wondering what else you can search for, check our helpdesk or ask us.

PS – Have you ever tried our TweetReach Labs Retweet Rings tool? It’s a fun, animated visualizer to see how retweets spread.

Written by Jenn D

June 5th, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Posted in Guides,Help

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New snapshot reports now available to everyone!

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We recently began rolling out a new look – and some new metrics – in our snapshot reports. As of today, all snapshot reports are now in the new format. Isn’t it so much nicer?

There’s more information about the new snapshot report below, including a few frequently asked questions and explanation about the metrics and our calculations. Or, skip all that and run a new and improved report right now!

How much does the new report cost?

As always, the quick snapshot report (up to 50 tweets) is free. The full snapshot report (up to 1500 tweets from the past week) is $20. The price has not changed.

How is the new report different from the old report?

First, it looks different. Way different and way better. Second, we’ve added some new metrics (details on those below). We’ve moved a few things around, but we haven’t removed anything from the old version of the snapshot report. The new version is just smarter and prettier than ever before.

What new metrics are included in the new report?

There are three major new sections in the new version of the TweetReach snapshot report. They are the Activity, Top Contributors and Top Tweets sections, explained below. There’s a more detailed explanation of all the report metrics here.

  • Activity provides details about the tweets in this report, including a graphical timeline of when tweets were posted (times shown in UTC).
  • Top Contributors shows you the top three contributors – participants whose tweets appear in this report. You’ll see the highest contributor for each of three influence dimensions: highest exposure, most retweeted, and most mentioned.
  • Top Tweets shows the three most retweeted tweets in this report, showing retweet counts for each tweet.

Can I still see the old version of the report?

Yes, you can still access the old version. There’s a View Old Version link in the top right corner of the report.

So, how do I get one of these new reports?

Just go to TweetReach.com and give it a try. Run a new TweetReach report for free right now!

Written by Jenn D

March 27th, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Posted in Features,News

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Unlimited full reports in TweetReach Pro

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Good news! We now offer unlimited full snapshot reports in the Plus, Premium, and Max TweetReach Pro plans.

Snapshot reports are perfect for a quick glimpse into recent Twitter activity about a topic, campaign or event. Full snapshot reports analyze all currently available tweets about your search query, which will be up to 1,500 tweets from the past week. And now, if you have a TweetReach Pro Plus, Premium or Max plan, you can run as many of those full reports as you want. That’s right – no limits, infinite reports!

And, just in case you run out of ideas for reports to run, here are a few suggestions.

Photo credit: iPod Infinity by wlodi

Written by Jenn D

October 6th, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Posted in Features,News

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Announcing free TweetReach accounts!

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Big news! We’re throwing open our doors at TweetReach and now everyone can sign up for a
free TweetReach account.

Interested? Skip the rest of this blog post and sign up here. Or read on for more about what’s included in a free TweetReach account.

Every day visitors to TweetReach.com run thousands of our free snapshot reports. We wanted to make this experience easier and more useful for those users. So today, we’re very excited to unveil our brand new free TweetReach accounts! Now you can save all of your free and full reports to a report archive, and access, print and export your reports at any time.

With a TweetReach account, you can:

  • Save an unlimited number of quick snapshot reports to My Reports archive
  • Access all of your purchased full snapshot reports, along with your purchase history
  • Quickly find past reports for further analysis
  • Share reports with colleagues and clients
  • Get the latest tweets for any query with one click
  • Download PDF and Excel versions of reports

Our new free accounts are perfect for anyone who wants to bookmark and download their snapshot reports, but doesn’t need the real-time, unlimited tracking and in-depth analytics available through a TweetReach Pro subscription.

Save unlimited reports to your My Reports archive for access anytime later.

In addition to bookmarking a report, you can download a PDF version, export it for analysis in Excel, print it, tweet it, post it to Facebook, and get the latest tweets for your search query.

So, what are you waiting for? You can sign up for a TweetReach account here. Did we mention it’s free? And if you like old school press releases, read ours here.

Written by Jenn D

September 15th, 2011 at 4:30 am

Posted in News

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Confused about Twitter search? You’re not alone.

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There’s one question our support team gets asked more often than anything else – how far back can TweetReach reports go? And it’s no wonder we get this question all the time; it can be pretty damn confusing. How long are tweets available? Why aren’t they available for a week or more? Why does this seem to change from one day to the next?

First, a bit about how TweetReach reports work. Our snapshot reports – both the 50-tweet free report and the full $20 report – are generated from Twitter’s Search API. You type in a search query, which can consist of one or more hashtags, keywords, usernames, URLs, and so on, and then we run that search through Twitter’s Search API to find all matching tweets. So our snapshot reports are dependent upon the tweets accessible through Twitter’s Search API.

It probably goes without saying that Twitter handles a lot of data. A lot. Twitter currently processes around 200 million new tweets a day, resulting in more than 350 billion tweet deliveries every single day. By our (very rough) estimation, there have been something like 1.75 trillion unique tweets posted in the past 2.5 years. Without getting too technical, let’s just say that it’s pretty hard to keep a service of this magnitude running. Because of this scale, Twitter can’t possibly keep trillions of historical tweets accessible to anyone at any time. Which is why when you go to Twitter Search or run a TweetReach report, you’re probably only going to find a few days worth of tweets. It’s just too hard to keep any more reliably and consistently available.

One of the things we love about Twitter – or at least that we have long since learned to live with – is that it can be a bit unpredictable. It’s a huge application with hundreds of millions of accounts; there will be occasional fail whales and things are probably going to change from one day to the next. One thing we know for sure is that it will continue to get harder and harder for Twitter to make older tweets available through search. The good news is that we’ve been doing this for a long time and have a number of ways to deal with these inevitable changes.

This brings us back to the most frequently asked of our FAQs – how far back can a TweetReach report go? The simplest answer is that our one-time snapshot reports – both the free and the full $20 versions – go back as far as Twitter’s Search API does. And right now, the Twitter Search API goes back a few days (the exact number varies, so check here for current conditions). The more in-depth answer is that, if we know about your event, campaign, or promotion in advance, we can use our TweetReach Pro service to track and save your tweets for weeks, months or even years. TweetReach Pro comes with Trackers, which connect to Twitter’s real-time Streaming API instead of their historical Search API. This means we can actually save your tweets on our own servers the moment they’re posted to Twitter, and then you can access them later because we’re not dependent on Twitter keeping those tweets available.

So, if you’re confused about your search results or curious about what tweets you can retroactively access, let us help you. Seriously, we’re here if you have any questions – just ask!

Photo credit: Search. by Jeffrey Beall

Written by Jenn D

July 26th, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Posted in Guides,Help

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Find more relevant and interesting information on Twitter

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We all know Twitter is a great place to find helpful information and interesting new ideas. Millions of people share all kinds of things every day. But that’s also one of the biggest problems with Twitter – it’s huge, which makes it nearly impossible to sift through all those tweets to find just the ones you might find useful.

So, here’s one idea to help you use Twitter to quickly and easily find more relevant information about the topics you’re interested in. First, pick a topic. Then run a free TweetReach report with a topic-related keyword and Twitter’s links-only filter.

For example, if you’re interested in social media analytics you could use the following query:

social media measurement filter:links

This query will return only tweets with links, giving you a list of blog posts, articles and websites about social media measurement. This is a great way to learn more about a topic, stay on top of recent news and trends, even find new blogs for your feed reader and interesting Twitter users to follow.

Try it now! And if you need inspiration, check out a few of these reports:

Written by Jenn D

March 22nd, 2011 at 3:38 pm

Posted in Guides

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Taking advantage of the free 50-tweet TweetReach report

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Every day, thousands of people run a free snapshot report at tweetreach.com. These free snapshot reports analyze up to 50 tweets from the past 3-7 days about any topic. You can search for a keyword, hashtag, URL, username, brand or product name, or any combination of those. You can even filter your results to a specific date or use other advanced search operators. You’ll get a full analysis of those 50 tweets, including metrics about reach, exposure, and contributors and some pretty charts like this one here.

Interpreting Your Results

When interpreting your results, it’s important to remember that the free report shows only the most recent 50 tweets for a search term. So the report you run right now could look very different than the report you ran yesterday, or even an hour ago. Even so, after time, you can start to get a pretty good sense of what kinds of numbers are appropriate for your particular search term. Here are some guidelines for how to interpret your 50-tweet report. We also have a detailed explanation of how to interpret a full 1,500-tweet report.

Exposure

In a 50-tweet report, the overall exposure could be anywhere from a few thousand to a hundred thousand.  On average, a free report will generate somewhere between 20,000 and 50,000 impressions. If your exposure is more than 50,000 in a 50-tweet report, that’s generally good – your message is spreading. Exposure is our count of total impressions generated by a search term.

Reach

For 50 tweets, reach will likely fall between 1,000 and 100,000. The reach number represents the total number of unique Twitter accounts that tweets about the search query were delivered to – it’s a measure of your potential audience. So, if in 50 tweets, your search term only reached a few thousand people, that’s pretty low. Are most of the tweets @ replies? Are many of the tweets posted by the same person or few people? On average, a 50-tweet report will reach somewhere between 10,000 and 30,000 people. If your reach is more than 30,000 in a 50-tweet report, that’s great. That likely means one or more well-connected people have tweeted about your topic and a wide variety of different people are tweeting.

Reach:Exposure Ratio

If you divide your exposure number by your reach number, you’ll end up with your reach:exposure ratio, which will fall between 0 and 1. There’s a in-depth discussion of the reach:exposure ratio here, but basically, you want to aim for something 0.2 or higher, with most reports falling between 0.2 and 0.6. The closer this number is to 1.0, the more distinct and separate contributors are represented in this report. That means a variety of people from all over Twitter – each with their own unique set of followers – are tweeting about this topic.

Contributors

Sometimes, a 50-tweet report will include tweets from 50 different people. That’s actually pretty rare; generally, most 50-tweet reports include tweets from 25-45 people. If the number of unique contributors is lower than 20, then one or more people are tweeting repeatedly about your term. Is this something you should be concerned about? It will depend on your situation, so look closely at the top contributors. Is someone spamming his/her followers about this topic?

Tweets

If your search term hasn’t generated 50 tweets in the past few days (i.e., if the free report returns fewer than 50 tweets), why? If you ran a report that only looked for tweets from a specific Twitter account (from:username), then that probably won’t have 50 full tweets in it. But most other terms should get to 50 tweets in a week. What can you do to get more people talking about this topic? Start thinking about what you can do to increase the conversation around this topic.

Report Ideas

You can actually learn a lot about a topic in just 50 tweets. Here are some ideas for how you can use the free report to help measure your impact and get more out of Twitter.

Track your numbers over time. Run a report for your brand or company every morning. Are your metrics growing? Who are your biggest advocates? What can you do to improve these numbers?

Monitor your competitors. Run a report every week for each of your competitors. Enter their stats in a spreadsheet. Use these baseline numbers as a guide to see how you stand up to the competition over time.

Count retweets. The query from:username OR “RT @username” will return tweets from and retweets of a particular Twitter account. It’s a great way to see the reach of your recent tweets and how many retweets you’re generating.

Find new blogs. Search for important keywords for your company or industry and add filter:links to your query. This will return only tweets with links in them, and could lead you to some new reading material.

Watch news spread. Enter a URL or short quote from a press release or blog post you just published. Run a report once an hour to see how the article is spreading around Twitter.

So, what are you waiting for? Give it a try and see how your numbers stack up! It’s totally free to run a 50-tweet report and you we won’t ask you to log in or give us your email address. And if you want more than 50 tweets, you can always buy the full report for your search query, which will include up to 1,500 tweets from the past few days .

Written by Jenn D

February 23rd, 2011 at 3:42 pm

Posted in Guides

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