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What’s your reach:exposure ratio?

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No matter the size of your TweetReach report, the report’s reach to exposure ratio (R:E) can tell you a lot about the impact of your tweets. Whether you’ve measured 50 tweets or 50,000 tweets, you can use the ratio of reach to exposure to understand something about how those tweets have spread.

The reach:exposure ratio* represents the depth of penetration of tweets about a topic. A lower R:E suggests that people are seeing tweets about a topic over and over, while higher R:E numbers suggest broad but shallow penetration of that topic. However, a higher R:E does not always indicate success. Depending on the type of tweets you’re measuring and your goals with those tweets, bigger is not always better.

Low R:E = 0.0-0.19

A low reach:exposure number (anything 0.19 or lower) suggests a large percentage of contributors are tweeting multiple times about the hashtag or keyword you’ve measured, which means the message is limited in scope and is not spreading far beyond those people’s followers. A number of people are receiving many tweets about this term.

Low ratios are fine in many cases, however. For example, regional issues and local news events, conferences, and Twitter chats, parties and contests are likely to fall in this range. And that’s perfectly reasonable for these types of events; they’re relevant to a smaller or localized audience and that’s who will see it.

If you’re aiming for a larger or more diverse audience, then start thinking of ways to get tweets about your topic out to a wider audience. What can you do to encourage more (and different) people to tweet? You should also be concerned if your R:E ratio is below 0.05. That suggests that someone is tweeting a lot about your keyword, to the point of being spammy.

Average R:E = 0.2-0.59

An moderate or normal ratio will be anywhere between 0.2 and 0.59. This suggests a normal distribution of tweets, retweets, and amplification. In this case, some people are tweeting multiple times, some influencers are tweeting to lots of followers, and most people are tweeting once or twice to their smaller set of followers. Most people will receive 2-5 tweets about your message.

Many general brand mentions and large product launches or announcements (Verizon iPhone, Chevy Volt) will fall in this range. Larger media events with a wide, popular appeal (like the Academy Awards and Super Bowl) will fall in this range, as well.

High R:E = 0.6-0.99

The closer this reach:exposure number gets to 1, the more different contributors are represented in this report. Ratios of 0.6 or higher indicate that a wide variety of different people are tweeting to a number of diverse followers, spreading the message far and wide. Most people are not seeing more than one or two tweets about the hashtag or keyword. This is ideal if you want a large amplification of your message.

Twitter trends and popular hashtag memes (#LessAmbitiousMovies, #FollowFriday), significant national or international news events, and very big-name products and brands will fall in this range.

Depending on how many contributors and tweets you measured, high ratios could be somewhat misleading. If your report includes just a few hundred tweets and you have a R:E ratio of 0.8, then one or two people with large followings can account for a great deal of this ratio. The smaller the dataset, the larger the impact a few people can have on the R:E ratio.

You should also be concerned if this number is higher than 0.85 or so (which is incredibly rare). This indicates that most people only received one tweet about this message, which might not bode well for retention. How likely are people to remember something if they only read about it once? And if only one tweet about a topic is delivered to a person’s Twitter client, it’s very possible that person did not even see it at all.

*To calculate the reach:exposure ratio, the formula is reach divided by exposure. You should get a number between 0 and 1 (if it’s higher than 1, then you probably used exposure divided by reach). For example, a recent report reached 147,425 people and had an exposure of 763,506 impressions. The R:E ratio is 147,425 / 763,506 = 0.19.

Note: We’ve written up a comprehensive set of full report benchmarks if you want more info about other metrics besides R:E.

Photo credit: Loud Speaker by paparatti.

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Written by admin

January 21st, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Posted in Guides

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Benchmark metrics for full TweetReach reports

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One of the questions we’re asked every day is, “How do I know if my TweetReach report numbers are good enough?” Raw metrics can be useful, but to be truly valuable they need to be evaluated in context.

Of course, we generally don’t recommend that you compare your social media results to others’. There are so many variables that play into a tweet’s or campaign’s reach that there is no single benchmark that applies to every situation. However, it is helpful for you to know what sorts of TweetReach numbers are appropriate in general, and how to interpret your particular results. Additionally, we recommend that you run regular reports and compare your metrics over time (you can also do this automatically with a TweetReach Tracker).

So, on to the numbers. Below are several benchmarks you can use to understand the impact of your full TweetReach reports (some of these metrics will also apply to the free 50-tweet reports, but we’ll be publishing another post soon that specifically addresses free reports). An individual full report will include up to the most recent 1,500 tweets from the past week. We used data from a large set of reports that hit that 1,500-tweet maximum in the past 12 months for the following metrics.

Reach and Exposure

In a full report (1,500 tweets), you’ll likely see reach and exposure numbers like the following:

Reach
Low: 100,000 or less
Average: 200,000-600,000
High: 1,000,000 or more

Exposure (Impressions)
Low: 300,000 or less
Average: 1,500,000-2,500,000
High: 5,000,000 or more

The reach and exposure numbers will vary from report to report, depending on context. A report for a one-hour Twitter party will be different from a report for a three-day conference, which will be different from a report for a press release or a news event. But the above numbers are a good approximation of an appropriate baseline for any report.

If your numbers are low, look for contributors who were tweeting many times to a small amount of followers; this could be perceived as spammy to their followers. Higher reach numbers indicate that more unique people were potentially reached with tweets about your message.

Reach:Exposure Ratio

More important than the reach and exposure numbers on their own is the number of people reached compared to the overall impressions generated. No matter how many tweets are in your report, this reach:exposure ratio is an important one to interpret.

Low: 0.0-0.2
Average: 0.2-0.4
High: 0.6-0.9

A low reach:exposure number (anything 0.2 or lower) suggests a large number of contributors are tweeting multiple times about the hashtag or keyword, so the message is not spreading far beyond those people’s followers and a number of people are possibly being inundated by tweets about this term. Low ratios are fine in many cases (for example, reports about regional issues will likely be between 0.1 and 0.2), but you should be concerned if you see numbers below 0.05. That suggests that someone is tweeting a lot about your keyword, to the point of being spammy.

An average or moderate ratio would be anywhere between 0.2 and 0.4. This suggests a normal distribution of tweets, retweets, and amplification. In this case, some people are tweeting multiple times, some influencers are tweeting to lots of followers, and most people are tweeting once or twice to their smaller set of followers. Most people will see 2-5 tweets about your message. This is exactly the range we expect most reports to fall in and it’s totally appropriate.

The closer this reach:exposure number gets to 1, the more diversity in contributors to this report. Ratios of 0.6 or higher indicate that a wide variety of different people are tweeting to a number of diverse followers, spreading the message far and wide. Most people are not seeing more than one or two tweets about the hashtag or keyword. This is ideal if you want amplification of your message. You should only be concerned if this number is higher than 0.85 or so (which is incredibly rare). This indicates that most people are only seeing one tweet about this message, which does not bode well for retention. Most people will likely forget about something if they only see it once.

Contributors

Low: 200 or less
High: 1,000 or more

A report for a Twitter party or hashtag chat will generally include tweets from fewer than 300 contributors. This is perfectly fine – over a short time period like an hour or two, a few hundred people in an organized chat or party will easily generate 1,500 tweets. If you’re tracking more general brand or product mentions and your 1,500-tweet report includes fewer than 200 contributors, then you should look at who’s talking (and how much), and what other things you can be doing to encourage your message to spread. In this case, it’s quite possible a few people are talking a lot about one thing in particular, and you might want to investigate that.

A larger brand or a longer-term or high-visibility event should generate higher contributor numbers. If your report include recent general mentions of a common brand name, for example, you’d expect to see at least 1,300 contributors in a 1,500-tweet report, suggesting that most people mention the brand once, then move on. A big product launch or popular press release should generate at least 1,000 contributors.

Tweet Types

Low retweets: 200 or fewer
Average retweets: 300-500
High retweets: 650 or more

Most reports will include mostly regular tweets, like the pie chart on the left. In fact, most reports include 50% to 75% standard (non-reply, non-retweet) tweets. That’s roughly 700-1,100 regular tweets in a report.

A report for a Twitter party or hashtag conversation will likely include a large percentage of @ replies, like the pie chart on the right. This suggests the message is not spreading much beyond the people engaging in the conversation. To help to message spread beyond that circle next time, you could explicitly encourage participants to retweet or tweet directly, instead of @ replying.

For a useful general benchmark, look at the number of retweets your report includes. Most reports include a few hundred retweets; usually about 20% – 35% of all tweets in a report are retweets, as both the pie charts demonstrate. Very, very few reports have more than 50% retweets. If your goal is to spread a message as far as possible, aim for higher numbers of retweets.

Hopefully these approximate benchmarks will help you interpret your full TweetReach report. We’ll be posting more benchmarks for free quick reports and Trackers soon, as well as more detailed discussions about data for different contexts, so check back in for those posts.

Written by Jenn D

January 7th, 2011 at 6:02 pm

Posted in Guides

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Should you run a TweetReach report or set up a Tracker?

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We currently offer two TweetReach reporting formats – the individual snapshot report and the Tracker. One of our most frequently asked questions is when it’s appropriate to run an individual report and when it’s best to set up a Tracker. Depending on the type of data you’re analyzing, one of these two formats will better serve your needs. To decide if you need to set up a Tracker or run a snapshot report, just answer three quick questions about the tweets you’re measuring.

1. When are/were the tweets posted?

a) Recently posted
b) Will be posted in the future

If you answered a, you should run a report now. Twitter only keeps tweets accessible for about a week, so if your tweets are older than that, we can’t retrieve them for analysis. Don’t lose them!

If you answered b, move on to question 2.

2. How many tweets do you expect?

a) Fewer than 1,500 tweets
b) More than 1,500 tweets

If you answered a, then you can run a snapshot report after your event has occurred. The snapshot report uses the Twitter Search API, which searches through the most recent seven days worth of tweets. So run that report after, but within one week of, the time period you wish to measure. If you need to measure more than a week’s worth of tweets, see question 3. A snapshot report can include up to 1,500 tweets. If you have 50 or fewer tweets, your report will be free. If it’s between 51 and 1,500 tweets, it’s $20.

If you answered b, you’ll need to set up a Tracker, which can track more than 1,500 tweets. Set up your Tracker before your event begins, or as soon as you can, so we capture as many tweets as possible. The Tracker uses Twitter’s Streaming API, so it captures tweets in real time, as they are posted to Twitter.

3. What is the time period for your analysis?

a) 0-7 days
b) A week or longer

If you answered a, you can run a snapshot report or a Tracker, depending on your answers to questions 1 & 2.

If you answered b, you need to set up a Tracker before your event begins, or as soon as you can. Trackers run in real time, so they will find all new tweets as they are posted to Twitter, but they cannot retrieve old tweets.

In sum: if you answered a to all three questions, run a snapshot report. If you answered b to all three questions, set up a Tracker. For other a/b combinations, check the chart below.

Screen_shot_2010-11-22_at_8.17.12_PM.png

*A few disclaimers about these particular combinations… Snapshot reports include up to 1,500 tweets from the past week, so if you have more than 1,500 tweets or data older than 7 days, we won’t be able to find all of your tweets for analysis. You can run an individual snapshot report anytime at tweetreach.com. Trackers monitor tweets in real time, so they will find all new tweets as they come in, with no limits on number of tweets or length of time. But Trackers cannot go back in time to include old tweets. You need a TweetReach Pro subscription to run a Tracker.

Written by admin

January 3rd, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Posted in Guides,Help

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How to work around Twitter’s search limitations

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One of the biggest challenges we face with TweetReach is the 1500-tweet, 5-day restriction on Twitter search results.

We completely understand why this limitation exists; it’s both difficult and expensive for Twitter to keep billions of tweets accessible in their Search API. But we also know how hard and frustrating it is for you to explain to your clients that we can’t include older tweets in reports. It’s unfortunate, but that’s just the way it is – tweets more than a week old are simply not available for us to access for a TweetReach report, whether it’s a free report or a full report. After seven days, those tweets are gone.

So, what can you do?

Plan ahead.

Whenever you can, create your monitoring and measurement plan early. Set up a TweetReach Tracker before you start a campaign so that we get all the data you’ll need. A Tracker finds all tweets about a term in real time, as they are posted to Twitter, and then stores them on TweetReach servers for analysis. This allows us to track tweets over periods of weeks, even months, and there’s no 1500-tweet limit. You can then analyze the tweets whenever you want, and you don’t have to worry about them disappearing in a week. The Tracker can only find new tweets, though, so make sure you set one up before your campaign starts. Even the Tracker can’t go back and find old tweets.

And if you need help setting up your Tracker’s search query, let us know! We have lots of experience with disambiguation and data cleaning, so let us help you get exactly the data you want.

Capture the data while you can.

Our one-time snapshot reports are essentially a historical analysis of the most recent 1500 tweets about a term from the past week. Since tweets are gone from search results after a week, make sure you run snapshot reports while the data is still available. Even if you’re not sure if you’ll need it, wouldn’t you rather be prepared? So run a report right now. Get the data while it’s still there.

And in cases of unexpected or crisis situations where you weren’t able to set up a Tracker preemptively, then set one up as soon as you can. You’ll want this information later, and it’s better to have some tweets than no tweets.

Maybe someday this won’t be an issue. But for now, the best thing you can do is be prepared and proactive. Set up your Trackers early and run reports as soon as you can. And if you ever have a question or need help getting your queries right, just ask us. We’re here to help.

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Written by Jenn D

October 26th, 2010 at 7:53 pm

Posted in Guides

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Quick – get a full TweetReach report for only $10!

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For three days only, all full TweetReach reports are only $10! That’s 50% off the regular price. Run as many as you like, no coupon needed.

To take advantage of this offer, simply go to http://tweetreach.com and run a report. Once that report is generated, click the Get Full Report link highlighted in yellow at the top. You’ll automatically be charged half price and you can pay with any major credit card. Your full report will be emailed to you within 24 hours (usually much, much sooner).

Feel free to pass this offer along to colleagues before it ends at 7:00 p.m. CDT on Thursday, May 6. At that time, reports will go back to their regular price of $20 each.

http://tweetreach.com

Written by Jenn D

May 4th, 2010 at 9:47 am

Posted in News

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Understanding Twitter Reach vs. Exposure with TweetReach

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TweetReach reports provide a number of metrics to help you measure the success of your Twitter messaging. However, the two most important metrics are reach and exposure. We often get questions about how we calculate these metrics and what they mean. We thought it would be a good idea to write an brief explanation here on the blog. If you need more detailed insight into your TweetReach report, check out our Twitter reach user guide at the Help Desk.

Calculating Reach and Exposure

Reach is the total number of unique Twitter users that received tweets about the search term. Exposure is the total number of times tweets about the search term were received by users. We call each receipt of a tweet an impression. See below for how TweetReach does these calculations.

Twitter Reach and Exposure Calculations

Interpreting reach and exposure

Reach provides an understanding of the overall impact of your message or campaign. A high reach indicates that a broad base of different users found your message interesting and spread it to their followers. It often means that multiple unrelated people found out about your campaign from sources outside of Twitter. Conversely, a lower reach means that your message is likely only being shared among a smaller group of people who may be more interrelated (e.g. people in the same geographic area).

A high reach will often be combined with a high exposure. Be careful if you notice your campaign has a low reach and a high exposure, that is an indicator that you may have a core of users that are trying to spread your message by tweeting repeatedly but that your campaign is failing to take off beyond those users’ followers. A high exposure among a small group of people may mean they feel “bombarded” by your message. You may want to alter your message or seek out other ways to get more Twitter users involved to avoid over-saturating a small group.

Written by Hayes D

April 3rd, 2010 at 6:38 pm

Posted in Guides

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