How would you describe your social media journey?
There was a day when I searched for my first set of people to follow. I also hoped that someone would start to follow my updates too. Six years later, after hours of engaging with others in forums, sharing resources and ideas, I have surpassed my 150,000th follower on the social media platform Twitter.
A long, long time ago …
My first tweet from @TeacherToolkit was in August 2010. The account was always intended to share ideas; an amalgamation of ‘Teacher’ wisdom and a ‘Toolkit’ of advice. Yet despite already using Twitter from a personal account in 2008, there was an increasing conflict of interest between sharing personal information with professional classroom/school work from the same account. Therefore, I made a conscious decision to separate the two and work on a ‘teaching account’ from the position of professionalism and transparency; writing frequently to offer tips for teachers on how to manage your social media profile.
As for this website, originally designed on Blogger in 2010, I then moved www.TeacherToolkit.me over to WordPress in 2012 when @TeacherToolkit started to grow. It was also around December 2010 that I first accumulated 10,000 followers on Twitter. I remember it clearly because other colleagues made such a fuss about the achievement. Five years later in July 2015, I had amassed a staggering 100,000 followers on Twitter and this site had reached the dizzying heights of 4 million readers (just 8 months ago)! At the time of writing, this blog has now reached 5 million reads across the world in 219 countries; reaching far-flung places such as: Kiribati, Chad, Haiti and the Cook Islands!
From the data below, you’ll see that my Twitter growth (purple line) is on a continuous climb; typically 100 new followers every day. The reach (grey line) from my Twitter account: this is how many impressions my little red logo makes on other people’s devices at multiple times: is in excess of 7 million people every month! I’m flabbergasted to be honest.
So, this is my thank you to readers for following Teacher Toolkit here and on social media, hoping that I can inspire you with tips and insights into the data I am seeing from behind the account. There’s likely to be a day when I do not use the software in the future, whether this is on my part or because the social media platform is on the decline as a forum, but it’s worth noting that we are all on a social media journey …
It is thanks to you that @TeacherToolkit now celebrates 150,000 Twitter followers and reminds me that we can all break out of our silos and share best practice. Teachers no-longer need to be alone in their own classrooms; feel bullied, exposed to bad ideas or feel victimised.
There are over 4,000 bloggers in the UK and I’d guess, the community is still growing, with an estimated ~2% of the (1 million) education professionals using Twitter in England, engaging with others to share, collaborate and to develop. That’s at least 200,000 Twitter users using a forum, professionally, to enhance their work.
The data below shares insights into my Twitter audience:
Click to expand
As a community, we have only just started this new epoch. Bloggers and Tweeters can now hold organisations and watchdogs to account, CEOs and Multi-Academy Trusts. We can create and share our own petitions and see the impact our online voices can have on parliament and policy. This is only the beginning of transparency and the (beginning of the) end to opaqueness.
So, this is my ‘thank you’ to you dear reader. Thank you for listening. Thank you for reading and most of all, thank you to all of my followers for your feedback – good and bad – over the last 6 years. I read it all – every, single tweet and comment.
200,000 by the winter of 2017?