Using Twitter can be fun, but measuring Twitter performance can be real pain in you-know-where. Here is a real cool tool to measure your Twitter performance and get actionable insights to improve it. Hootsuite Grade Your Social – a free tool from the awesome team behind my favorite Social Media Management tool Hootsuite. I am using Twitter from April 2009, though started taking it seriously much later. At the time of writing this article I have 11.1 K followers on Twitter, not a single 1 acquired from any mass twitter buying schemes. But still the big number “11.1K” doesn’t matter, if I am not using it effectively. Over the years I kept learning and implementing, hence improved a lot. But after using this Hootsuite Grade Your Social tool, I found out many more areas of improvement. Let me show you.
I don’t like keeping secret. I like to discuss my mistakes openly and publicly. So that I can improve myself and others can save time avoiding the same mistakes. I am going to disclose how my Twitter account is performing. And mark my words, I am going to improve my grade within 6 months. So let’s get started.
Table of Contents
Grade Your Social – Free Twitter Analysis Tool
You can access the tool from grader.hootsuite.com
You’ll see a page like the one seen in the photo above. Login with your twitter account to see the page below.
Your Social Grade – Overall Results
From this page you’ll get a quick overall rating (mine is B+) and the ratings for individual areas like Reach, Engagement & Profile.
Don’t forget to share your ratings (screenshot if you can) in the comment sections.
Then click Next to dig deeper.
How big is your Twitter Audience?
I will not say that having a big audience is the only factor for success on Twitter. Ofcourse there are other parameters, as you’ll shortly see from this post. But having a large audience matters, specially when you acquire it over time without any back door processes (buying Twitter followers from click farms) and you know what to do with it.
Here are some tips to increase your Twitter followers PROPERLY:
- Be active and consistent on Twitter. Continuing from 2009 and staying active for all these years resulted in many twitter followers.
- I understand that you are too busy to keep posting on Twitter 24 x 7. That is why you need to capitalize Hootsuite Scheduling feature. Whenever you get time keep scheduling posts to be delivered throughout the day, week or month.
- Use relevant hashtags ( # ) while posting tweets. People following that # will find you, and many of them will probably follow you.
- Mention your Twitter account everywhere. Give Twitter follow button on your website/blog (Sidebar,below the post with Author Bio,footer), include Twitter profile in your Email signature,
- Include your Twitter profile in the about section of all other Social Media profiles.
- Add yourself to best Twitter directories. Here is a list from ShoutMeLoud.
- Track relevant keywords and #hashtags and engage in conversation. I can still remember that I got my oldest Twitter friends while following “Independence Day” keyword on 15th August 2009. Similarly participate in Twitter chats related to your industry.
- If you are on a live even (offline/online), tweet live using official hashtag.
- When you share an article, don’t be lazy, find the Twitter id of the author and include their twitter handle in that tweet.
- When someone (normal people or brands that interacts) follows you, follow back. I know many will advise you not to. But personally I feel it’s rude not to follow back a real person/brand if I am not a celebrity. Now the popular argument against it is that how can you keep track of so many people you are following? Use Twitter list my friend.
Here are some more tips from Social Media Examiner.
Do your messages get retweeted?
As you can see, I need to improve in this area.
More retweets your messages get, signifies:
- Your Followers are attentive and loyal.
- Your content is interesting and/or useful.
- You are a celebrity (in that case people will retweet whatever you tweet)
Here is an article from Jeff Bullas – 9 Simple and Powerful Ways to Get More Retweets on Twitter: Report
I am going to implement these suggestions!
Are your followers actively engaged with you?
You need to notice 1 fascinating statistics here:
2.5% of the audience of top Twitter users mention or reply to them.
See only 2.5% , not 50% or even 25%. This is something that most people doesn’t understand.
Twitter is such a fast paced Social medium, where everyone following you won’t/can’t see all/most of your messages. Unless your followers are 10 people from your friends and family, who are using Twitter just to keep in touch with you and a few friends.
If you are using Twitter for business, to amplify your brand, you need to build a large following so that even the 2.5% engagement will generate considerable buzz to create interest about your brand or even drive sales.
Ah! My performance is not good at all in this. I need to work on engaging my followers more.
Bonus tip: Another interesting takeaway from this page is to find top 3 engaged followers. I am sure you’d love to keep an eye on them, engage with them more and appreciate them with some giveaway or atleast a #FollowFriday shout out.
I found a great article that might help you to improve the number of ReTweets and Engagements – Struggling with Social Engagement? Try These Formulas for Killer Tweet Copy
Simple but so profound!
I was playing with words to write tweets to promote this blog post, here are some:
Measuring Twitter performance is tough. What if a tool can make it easy for you? Try this:Most brands fail to get return from Twitter effort. You can continue to struggle or find the guidance from this tool:Checking Twitter analytics can be techy and complicated. Is there a twitter analytics tool that anyone can understand? Here it is:
Do your messages contain rich content?
If you are a Social Media enthusiast, I am sure that you already know the importance of rich content (links, images, videos).
One interesting thing about Twitter is that links performs much better than any other Social Media platforms. You can keep posting many links of valuable articles/ blogposts etc (some of our own, some from others) throughout the day without being considered as spammy. That number of links would have irritated your Facebook followers.
This is why …
Twitter is a great medium for driving free traffic to your site (Links)
Here are some power tips to drive traffic to your website/blog posting links on Twitter:
- If you are using self-hosted WordPress like me, install Evergreen Post Tweeter plugin and set it up. It will keep posting your old blog posts on Twitter periodically based on your selected settings. Few suggestions:
- Write Evergreen posts that seem appropriate whenever a person discovers those. Don’t forget to update those posts when necessary.
- Make sure the date of the post doesn’t appear on your blog post permalink. i.e www.souravghosh.com/blog/blog-post-name is better than www.souravghosh.com/blog/2014/01/01/blog-post-name.
- Get ride of the “Date of publishing” from the blog post byline.
- When you are sharing high value articles from others, use snip.ly to shorted the url and add a CTA (call-to-action) directing back to your website. Good news is the Chrome extension works seamlessly with Hootlet. So you can share/schedule any blog post/article with CTA added from that very page.
- Setup Twitter Cards. Then whenever you or anyone shares links from your website, Twitter will display the preview making it more visually appealing.
- Make your blog posts/ website content easily tweetable by including Tweet button at right positions. Here are some useful links for that:
- [Tweet “Use #ClickToTweet to make highights of your post tweetable.”] Plugin Page.
- Setup RSS feed in Hootsuite to deliver new blog posts from your favorite blogs automatically.
You can see that I share considerable more links than industry average.
Who doesn’t love images? Like most Social Media channels (Except LinkedIn I suppose) twitter users love images too. A lot!
There are unlimited number of images floating around Internet. So you can share images from other people (from Google, Pinterest, Google+, Facebook etc.) on Twitter. But it’s always advisable to share your own images (image that you own) more, to avoid attribution/intellectual property right problems, and building your own brand.
Having a steady supply of images can be (actually used to be) a headache if you are not a photographer or graphic designer.
Canva – Create Social Media Graphics In Minutes
Let me share with you an awesome tool if you are not using it already – Canva. With this tool you (or anyone) can create Social Media friendly graphics within minutes without any knowledge of graphic designing. (Check out the top most images of this blog post, it’s create using Canva).
Snag It – Best Screen Capture Tool
That leads to another nifty tool to take screenshot (You must have noticed that the top most image contains a screenshot of the Hootsuite Grade Your Social tool homepage). I have tried many tools for taking screenshots –
- Awesome screenshot.
- Windows snipping tool.
But wasn’t satisfied with any of them. Finally found Snag It. Love every bit of it.
Share Images From Hootsuite
You can share/schedule images to be posted on Twitter, read this article to see how.
ViralTag – Upload Images to Multiple Social Networks at Once
Though you can post an image simultaneously to Twitter, Facebook Profile, Facebook Page, Google+ page from Hootsuite … but if you want to have Tumblr and Pinterest also in that list, use Viraltag.
Though I am posting more images than industry average, but I am looking forward to post more.
No matter whether you feel comfortable or not, face the truth that videos are hot right now on Social Media.
But as analysis of my twitter account is showing 0% videos, I guess YouTube videos doesn’t count as videos on Twitter.
As far as I know that currently Vine is the only way to share videos on Twitter. And the app is only available for Android, iOS and Windows mobile devices. Please correct me if I am wrong about this.
Are You Responsive?
Ah! What can be more important than this? How would you feel if you tweet to someone and don’t get a response in return? That’s how a person feels when we don’t reply to their mentions.
And imagine the joy of getting a reply from your favorite celebrity or brand! It’s not rocket science that the Twitter user who is more responsive will enjoy a much more engaging community.
I need to work on it!
Incase anyone is in worse situation than mine, here are some tips:
- Enable notification on your mobile, so that you can respond on the go.
- Use Hootsuite mobile for the purpose.
- Make it a habit to atleast check Twitter once a day and respond to every mentions (incase you get a lot, atleast respond to as many as humanly possible. You can filter your mention stream by Klout score in Hootsuite to respond to the most influential tweeps)
How Complete is your profile?
Ah! Glad to see that I passed this test 🙂
I have absolutely no idea why Hootsuite thinks that having Custom Background and Custom Colours is important. Neither do I understand how I passed the test without having those two. These two things used to be important for old Twitter layout, but for the latest Twitter layout I don’t think these two has any effect.
Here are some quick suggestions to setup Twitter profile in a way, that will attract more prospects/followers/leads/peers/human… :
- Give a closeup and clear headshot as your profile picture. As more and more users are using Twitter from mobile devices, it would be nearly impossible to see your face. (I need to give a more closeup photo)
- Give an attractive and interesting header image. For a twitter account of a brand, feel free to use to space to showcase your products or promote latest campaigns. (Keep important content in the middle of the Header Image, as both sides get truncated while viewing from mobile devices).
- Give a bio that people can connect you and find you from. Few points:
- # , @ and links within bio are clickable.
- Use relevant hashtags to make your Twitter profile more discoverable.
- Give your location, so that local people can find you easily.
- Don’t forget to give your website.
Now it’s your turn!
See I have shared so much with you. Now share your results from Hootsuite Grade Your Social Tool and any tips you have. I’d love to read.
If I can help you in any way to improve your online presence, feel free to book a time with me from the Contact Widget in the bottom right corner. I’d love to work with you.