Until recently, projected impressions were one of the best methods for measuring brand awareness on Twitter.
Projected impressions on Twitter are a simple function of how many posts you make times the number of followers you have. If you have 200 followers and make 10 posts in a day, your projected impressions for that day will be 2,000. Not bad!
Not so fast, says Twitter.
With the rollout of Twitter analytics, businesses started seeing a reach problem similar to that of Facebook: startlingly low reach compared to what you’d expect with a certain number of people following you on social media. Only, not everyone checks those. While that’s a problem in and of itself, brands in need of a reminder about the volatility of their audience need not go any farther than their own feeds.
Very recently, Twitter rolled out analytics for individuals. No more guessing how many people read your tweets with projected impressions. You can log onto analytics and see — for each individual tweet — just how many people are actually seeing your posts.
Those 200 followers you thought were seeing your every post may be more like 20. Percentage reach for most of my tweets ranges from 3-20 percent. With around 400 followers, that’s huge — the difference between 400 people seeing my tweets, and 20. Not exactly the best news for social media gurus around the world.
The case is worse for brands. 2,000, 3,000, and 4,000 impressions per tweet are actually more like 60, 90, or 120. Even the best brands are having issues. Buzzfeed, has 1.82 million followers. Impressions on five of its tweets ranged from 31,711 to 72,204, or 1.7-4 percent reach on tweets. Those numbers, if you haven’t been paying attention, are shocking.
Of course, it makes sense. Whether you have 200 followers or 2 million, the chances of them all being online and seeing your tweets at the same time are slim. Even so, expecting 2 million impressions and getting 2 percent of that is frustrating.
There’s only so much we can tell you to make you feel better. What we will say is that this should be a reminder that your Twitter audience is probably much smaller than you thought. If you thought that your time with your audience was precious before, this ought to be a bright shining sign that it’s even more valuable than you ever thought possible. In this era of excess content, your chance to get in front of your audience is small. Your chances of impressing them if you’re not producing great content are even smaller.
Take a moment to assess the work you’re doing — whether or not you think your content will hold the attention of the 2, 5, or 10 percent of followers who might actually encounter your post. If you are, then good. You’re on the right track. If you’re not, then take a moment and figure out how you’re going to get it together. You have a less than 10 percent chance of actually getting in front of the audience you already thought you have. You’d better make sure you’re cherishing it.
Image Credit: Twitter