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How TweetReach impressions compare to Twitter impressions

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At TweetReach, we provide measures of potential reach and impressions on Twitter.

Reach is the size of the estimated potential unique audience for a set of tweets. We calculate reach algorithmically, based on data we’ve been collecting from Twitter since we launched more than five years ago. It’s a great way of estimating how large your audience on Twitter could be, and takes unique recipients into account, removing duplicates.

Impressions measure the size of total potential exposure. This shows you how many total timelines your tweets were delivered to – including multiple deliveries to the same account – so it’s a count of the maximum total impressions possible for a set of tweets.

TweetReach reach and impressions

If you’ve ever seen the analytics Twitter provides for your Twitter account, you’ve noticed they provide a count of actual impressions for each of your tweets. That impressions number shows how many times people actually saw that tweet. So you may be wondering how TweetReach impressions and Twitter impressions relate to each other. What do they each mean? Which one should you use? Why are they so different?

Twitter provides actual impressions for your tweets, while TweetReach calculates total potential impressions for those tweets. You can use these numbers together to fully understand how impactful your tweets are. The number of actual impressions your tweets receive will vary from tweet to tweet and account to account, but your actual impressions will likely be between 1% and 20% of your potential impressions.

Knowing how your actual impressions compare to your potential impressions shows you exactly how well your tweets are performing, how large your activated audience is, and how large your potential audience could be. What’s the ratio of your actual impressions to potential impressions? Are your tweets on the low side? Do some tweets perform better than others? Ask yourself the following questions to help improve the ratio of actual impressions to potential impressions.

What tweets get the most impressions?

First, look at which tweets are seen – and engaged with – by the most people. What makes those tweets different from your lower-performing tweets? Maybe you used a particular hashtag or included a photo. Maybe you mentioned someone who retweeted you. Whatever it is, try doing more of that to see how you can activate more of your potential audience, and improve your ratio of actual to potential impressions. For example, we’ve found for our own content, hashtags like #smm and #measure help get our tweets in front of a receptive, responsive audience interested in social media marketing. And our tweets with an interesting photo or video get high rates of engagement. And when it comes to posts about our company, tweets using the #hiring hashtag generate a lot more impressions than an average tweet.

What tweets get the fewest impressions?

Next, look at the tweets that are performing the worst. Which ones have the fewest impressions and least engagement? Look for patterns in those tweets. Sometimes you can learn more from what’s not working than from what is working. For example, we’ve found that some of our text-only tweets get fewer impressions and lower engagement than our visual content does. But not every time – there seems to be certain types of images that work better than others for us. What do you see in your analytics?

What’s different about your outliers?

Finally, are there any tweets that get way more engagement or impressions than the rest of your tweets? Dig deeper into these tweets, in both Twitter and TweetReach. What exactly spurred that response? Twitter will tell you how many retweets, replies, clicks and favorites a tweet received, and TweetReach can tell you who retweeted or replied to you and how much amplification they contributed to that tweet. Use this information to see what caused the spike, and think about how you can try to replicate this on future tweets.

Who engages with your tweets? And how?

Finally, you can use other metrics on engagement (like retweets and replies, average retweet rate) and contributors (such as the people who have engaged the most with your content and generated the most amplification for your content) to understand not just how far your content is reaching, but how and with whom. When taken together, along with actual and potential impressions, you can more completely understand what’s working with your Twitter account and how you can improve what isn’t.

You can run a free TweetReach snapshot report here any time, on any hashtags, usernames or keywords. Try it now! Want more? Check out our comprehensive TweetReach Pro subscriptions, with real-time monitoring and analytics, starting at just $99 per month.

Written by Jenn D

May 14th, 2015 at 8:21 am

Where does Union Metrics social data come from?

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Ever wondered where we get the social data we build our analytics on at Union Metrics? Here’s a quick rundown on where our data comes from and what that means to you.


We get all our Twitter data directly from Twitter! We’ve had a relationship with Gnip since 2011, and now that Gnip has been acquired by Twitter, we have a direct relationship with Twitter. Specifically, our Pro Trackers access raw Twitter data directly through Twitter’s commercial real-time streaming API, which means full-fidelity ongoing coverage of any tweets you’re interested in. Our historical analytics are built on Twitter’s commercial historical stream, which is full access to the entire Twitter archive. And our snapshot reports use Twitter’s public Search API, which includes up to 1500 tweets from the past days. (This also means Twitter’s recent announcement about cutting off external data providers won’t impact any of the Union Metrics or TweetReach products you use and love.)


Our Tumblr analytics are based on full-fidelity Tumblr firehose that we commercially license through Gnip. We’ve been consuming that firehose since the summer of 2012. That means you’ll have full coverage of all posts for any blogs or keyword-based topics you want to monitor on Tumblr. We’re also a Tumblr preferred data partner, which means that Tumblr has certified us as legit.


At this time, Instagram does not provide a commercial firehose. However, we’ve built a custom robust system that works with the public Instagram API to deliver the closest thing to a full-fidelity streaming experience you’ll find for any Instagram analytics in the market. This means you’ll have full coverage analytics in real-time for the accounts and hashtags you’re tracking.

If you have any questions at all about our data, where it comes from or how it’s treated, please don’t hesitate to ask! We’re here any time you need us.

Written by Jenn D

April 16th, 2015 at 9:41 am

Posted in Help,TweetReach Tech

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Quick Twitter analytics with TweetReach snapshot reports

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Here’s a brief primer on TweetReach snapshot reports – great for quick Twitter analytics on recently posted tweets.

Our free Twitter analytics snapshots include up to 100 tweets posted in the past few days. And our full snapshot reports include Twitter analytics on up to 1500 tweets from the past week (whichever comes first) for just $20. Both are perfect for fast insight into recent Twitter activity around anything – a hashtag, phrase, tweet, account, keyword, or any combination. You can run TweetReach snapshot reports any time, for any topic, on

Use our snapshot reports to learn more about:

  • Hashtag analytics – How has a hashtag been used recently? How large is the conversation around a hashtag? How are the main influencers using a Twitter hashtag?
  • Twitter account analytics – How far are your tweets reaching? Who is retweeting and engaging with your account?
  • Competitor analysis – How do multiple Twitter accounts compare to each other? Who has the largest reach on Twitter? Who’s getting more engagement?
  • Quick research – What kinds of things were people tweeting about a particular keyword, phrase or hashtag?
  • Tweet analytics – How far did a particular tweet spread? Who was retweeting or quoting a tweet? Who was responsible for the most impressions?

Try it now! You’ll have results in seconds.

And if you like our snapshot reports, you can now get more of them than ever before! TweetReach Pro subscription plans now include unlimited full snapshot reports, and start at just $99 per month. Learn more and sign up now.

Written by Jenn D

January 19th, 2015 at 1:47 pm

Want to analyze older or historical tweets? We can help!

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At Union Metrics, we can access any tweets in Twitter’s history for TweetReach analytics reporting! So if you’re interested in understanding the impact of tweets about a past campaign or project, we can help. Use this guide to see which TweetReach product you need, depending on when your tweets were posted.

When were the tweets posted?


If the tweets you’re interested in were posted in the past week, try running a snapshot report. Snapshot reports are great for recent, smaller events. Free snapshots include up to 50 recent tweets, and our full $20 snapshots will include up to 1500 tweets from the past few days (usually up to a week).

A while ago

If the tweets are more than one week old, you’ll need our premium historical analytics. With our historical Twitter analytics, we access the full Twitter archive and can analyze any public tweets that have ever been posted, dating back to March 2006. Pricing starts at $199 and is based on report duration and total tweet volume. Request a quote or more information here.

In the future

If the tweets haven’t been posted yet, set up a Tracker with our TweetReach Pro Twitter analytics subscriptions. That starts at just $99 per month, which includes real-time, ongoing monitoring for two topics, hashtags, keywords or accounts and up to 100,000 tweets per month. You just need to set up your Tracker before tweets start going out, and we can capture them all. You can see full pricing here.

Learn more

If you’d like to learn more about our premium historical analytics, let’s talk! Email us if you have any questions or read more on our website.  You may also want to read this post on how to take advantage of our historical Twitter analytics.

Old Skool Tweet


Image via Iain Farrell on Flickr 

Written by Jenn D

January 9th, 2015 at 10:01 am

Posted in Guides,Help

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Union Metrics Holiday Support Hours: New Year Edition

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Just a quick reminder that the Union Metrics support team will be around to answer all of your questions throughout the final weeks of 2014. However, please allow us a little extra time to return your calls and emails on the following dates, as we’ll be a reduced staff over the holidays.

  • Wednesday, December 31 – Thursday, January 1

On these days, we will return all non-urgent requests within 24 hours and urgent requests as soon as possible. As always, you can get in touch with us in many ways. Email is the fastest way to get through to us during the holidays.

Happy New Year!

NYE Support Merle

Written by Sarah

December 30th, 2014 at 9:01 am

Posted in Help

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Union Metrics Holiday Support Hours

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The Union Metrics support team will be around to answer all of your questions throughout the final weeks of 2014. However, please allow us a little extra time to return your calls and emails on the following dates, as we’ll be a reduced staff over the holidays.

  • Wednesday, December 24 – Friday, December 26
  • Wednesday, December 31 – Thursday, January 1

On these days, we will return all non-urgent requests within 24 hours and urgent requests as soon as possible. As always, you can get in touch with us in many ways. Email is the fastest way to get through to us during the holidays.

Happy holidays!

Photo 12-11-14, 8 09 39 AM

Written by Sarah

December 23rd, 2014 at 9:00 am

Posted in Help

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Union Metrics holiday support hours

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The Union Metrics support team will be around to answer all of your questions throughout the final weeks of 2014. However, please allow us a little extra time to return your calls and emails on the following dates, as we’ll be a reduced staff over the holidays.

  • Thursday, November 27 – Friday, November 28
  • Wednesday, December 24 – Friday, December 26
  • Wednesday, December 31 – Thursday, January 1

On these days, we will return all non-urgent requests within 24 hours and urgent requests as soon as possible. As always, you can get in touch with us in many ways. Email is the fastest way to get through to us during the holidays.

Happy holidays!

Holiday Support

Written by Sarah

November 26th, 2014 at 7:00 am

Posted in Help

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Best practices and tips for Twitter and TweetReach

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Whether you know someone just getting started with Twitter as they’re launching their new business, or you want to brush up on some of the basics yourself, we’ve rounded up all of the Twitter and TweetReach tips and best practices we’ve written up and tested and put them here for your convenience.

Twitter Best Practices

Twitter Hashtag Best Practices

Why you should use lists on Twitter

Use favorite tweets to find new resources

Brands: why you should favorite tweets

Using Twitter Trending Topics to your advantage

Twitter Quick Tips

Twitter Tip: Authorized apps 

Twitter Tip: Turn off mobile alerts at bedtime

Twitter Tip: User Widgets

Twitter Tip: Emergency alerts

Twitter Tip: Personalize

Twitter Tip: Discover

TweetReach Tips

Tracking Instagram, Vine and more with TweetReach (And now, of course, you can also use our Union Metrics for Instagram analytics!)

TweetReach Tip: Measuring the results of a Twitter contest

Using TweetReach to monitor a social media crisis

TweetReach Tip: Find & engage influencers on Twitter with TweetReach snapshot reports

TweetReach Tip: Common Tracker mistakes

TweetReach Tip: Improve your snapshot report search query

TweetReach Tip: Measuring the reach of a Twitter account

TweetReach Tip: Saving your snapshot reports

TweetReach Tip: Excluding tweets from your search

TweetReach Tip: Searching for a specific tweet

TweetReach Tip: Searching for URLs

TweetReach Tip: How to isolate specific dates in a Tracker

TweetReach Tip: How to isolate specific dates in a snapshot report

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

Got any good tips we missed or questions you want answered? Leave them in the comments, or find us on Twitter. We’re always happy to answer your questions!

Image courtesy NYPL Digital Gallery. 

Written by Sarah

May 7th, 2014 at 11:24 am

TweetReach: Where our Twitter data comes from

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We use Gnip so we don’t have to send poor Merle down into the Twitter data mines.

We’ve written before about the five questions you should be asking your social analytics provider, and we wanted to make it clear what you’re getting when you choose TweetReach Pro. If you still have questions after you read this, feel free to share them in the comments below, or drop us a line. We’ll be happy to help answer them!

Does Union Metrics have access to the Twitter firehose for TweetReach?

This is a question we get fairly often, and although we address it in our help docs, we also wanted to address it here as it’s a little more complicated than it might seem. The short answer is yes. As for the long answer…

Twitter has two licensed data resellers - Gnip and Datasift - who can provide access to the full Twitter firehose to third parties. The full Twitter firehose includes full-coverage, real-time streaming access to all of the data from Twitter. In most cases, direct access to the full firehose is unnecessary, not to mention very expensive to consume and store. After all, as of last fall, Twitter has 215 million monthly active users, 100 million daily active users, and sees 500 million tweets per day.

So companies like us here at Union Metrics work with one of these data resellers, who have built powerful filtering tools on top of the Twitter firehose to provide high-quality access to the data we need. This makes it more efficient in both time and money for us provide the detailed, comprehensive Twitter analytics our customers want. We’ve elected to work with Gnip, and in fact are part of their Plugged In to Gnip partner program, which means they recognize that we can deliver you the highest quality Twitter data available through licensed access to the full Twitter firehose. This means you don’t have to worry about missing any data.

Our TweetReach Pro Trackers are built on Gnip’s real-time PowerTrack stream, meaning we have full access to all tweets as they are posted – with no rate limits! – for any keyword, hashtag or account you want to analyze. Similarly, TweetReach premium historical analytics are built on Gnip’s Historical PowerTrack product, and provide complete access to the Twitter archive, dating back to March of 2006. Both include full tweet coverage.

To sum up: TweetReach Twitter analytics are built from licensed access to the full Twitter firehose through Gnip.

What about Union Metrics’ other products?

Union Metrics is a certified Plugged In To Gnip partner, which means we have commercially licensed, full-coverage access to both Twitter and Tumblr data. That’s reliable, reputable data you can count on, both now and in the future. Here’s the breakdown of the data source for each of our products:

  • Our TweetReach Pro Trackers have Gnip PowerTrack access – that’s full coverage of all public tweets in real time for any search terms you enter. That means no missed tweets and no sampling.
  • Our TweetReach snapshot reports use the Twitter Search API, so they’re great for quick estimates of recent activity, but are limited to about 1500 tweets from the past week.
  • Our TweetReach premium historical analytics use Gnip’s Historical PowerTrack. That gives us full access to any public tweet in Twitter’s history, dating back to the very first tweet posted in March 2006.
  • Finally, with Union Metrics for Tumblr, we consume the full Tumblr firehose. That means we process 100% of all public posts, notes and other Tumblr activities.

If you have any other questions about our data access, please just ask!

Written by Sarah

January 29th, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Posted in Guides,Help

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TweetReach Tip: Less is more with snapshot reports

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Keep it simple with TweetReach snapshot reports! Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re running a snapshot report:

1. Snapshots will analyze tweets up to one week old. Snapshots pull tweets from up to 7 days ago, so be sure you run them as soon as you can after your event. Older tweets are only available through our premium historical analytics.

2. Full snapshots will include up to 1,500 tweets. Due to restrictions from Twitter’s Search API (more on that below), a full snapshot report is limited to about 1500 tweets from the past week. If your topic or hashtag had more tweets than that, we’ll go back until we hit that limit, but won’t be able to pull them all into a snapshot report. For higher-volume topics, try our historical analytics or ongoing Pro Trackers.

3. A snapshot report is just that – a snapshot. We use the Twitter Search API for our snapshot report data, and it operates more on relevancy than on completeness. This means it will pull everything that Twitter considers most relevant to your search query from the past seven days, so some tweets or users might be missing from your results. For more complete results, try our Pro Tracker, which has access to the full-fidelity, real-time Twitter stream.

4. Narrow your snapshot search dates with filters. If you want more specific results for a snapshot report, you can include date filters. The since: and until: operators allow you to select a specific date range within the past week for your search. For example, let’s say you want to see all #TBT tweets for December 12, 2013 through December 17, 2013. Search for #TBT since:2013-12-12 until:2013-12-18 (use the YYYY-MM-DD format, which is tied to 00:00 for each date). Like this:

#TBT Snapshot

5. Tweets in our snapshot reports are displayed in the Universal Coordinated Time zone (UTC). This is to simplify and standardize our reporting across all time zones. If you need help converting UTC to your time zone, try this converter.

Written by Sarah

January 2nd, 2014 at 9:23 am