Free Twitter Analytics - what can libraries and archives get out of it? - Ned Potter | The Information Professional |

Twitter stats packages are sort of fascinating but also not. I look at a fair few because I need to be able to talk about them in social media workshops: what tends to happen is I put my username in, go 'ooooh that's interesting!' a few times, but then never actually go back and check the analysis on a second occasion.

As individuals we don't really need Twitter stats apps (unless you take Twitter very seriously) but as organisations they can be genuinely useful. They can help us understand our network, show us what works (so we can build on it) and what doesn't (so we can phase it out).

For an analysis package to be useful to an organisation it really needs three qualities:

1. It must give you information you can ACT on. There are a million
stats apps out there, but if they don't tell you anything which you
can use to inform better practice for your twitter account, then they
don't really have any value.
2. It must NOT tweet things about that information on your behalf. Someapps tell you useful things - but they tell the rest of the world
those useful things too. I'm dubious about this at the best of times
(for me an auto-tweet saying "This week on Twitter: X follows /
unfollows, Y ReTweets and Z total reach!" either looks a bit awkward if X, Y and Z are small numbers, and a bit show-boaty if they're large) but I really don't think organisational accounts should have anything tweeted on their behalf.
3. It ideally needs to be free. Some things are worth paying for but
realistically it's hard to get the people who control the
purse-strings in libraries to shell-out for a Twitter stats annual

Thankfully the official Twitter Analytics, newly available for all, meets all three of those criteria. If you just tweet as yourself, sign in to and have a look a round at the things worth noting; it's interesting to see how few of your followers actually see your tweets, for example."