Understanding Twitter

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Ross Morrison McGill founded @TeacherToolkit in 2010, and today, he is one of the 'most followed educators'on social media in the world. In 2015, he was nominated as one of the '500 Most Influential People in Britain' by The Sunday Times as a result of...
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How well do you understand your social media audience?

I’ve been using Twitter since 2008, separating my personal views from my workplace and creating @TeacherToolkit on Twitter in 2010. Eight years later, this is now one of the most popular teacher channels in the U.K. and one of the most influential streams across the world. In this post, I share the analytical insights and what it all means.

Twitter analytics is available to every user on Twitter (via your profile). In the last 28 days, up until 14th March 2018, the @TeacherToolkit account has:

  • Tweeted 1,729 times – that’s 57 times per day – about 50% pre-scheduled.
  • Received 9.05 million impressions – that means 323,214 people see the tweets everyday.
  • Received about 4,500+ notifications on Twitter – this does not include other TT social channels.
  • I aim to reply to them all.
  • Accrue 2,000 new followers every 28 days – about 71 per day.
  • On that basis, TT will reach 200,000 followers by August 2018.

Twitter Analytics March 2018

Followers Activity

Despite 190,000 followers, 7.9% have never tweeted. This could be for a number of reasons: logged in and abandoned the account; shy and lurking; unsure of what to do. This equates to 15,000 users! If you’re stuck what to do, try our 10 Tips for Tweeting Teachers.

Social Rank

Follower Distribution

The vast majority of users have between 0 and 1,000 followers. For any individual to exceed 5,000 is a rare thing indeed; this data is useful to gauge the quality of your audience. Over 37% of our followers have between 25 and 250 followers each.

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As with the teaching profession in general, @TeacherToolkit on Twitter (as well as on our other channels) connects with the same demographic split. 70-80% of teachers who use social media are female. However, we do have a large number of organisations who follow @TeacherToolkit, so we cannot entirely trust this data unless we can calculate if ‘organisations’ have been removed from the gender analysis.

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Popular Hashtags

These are the hashtags most commonly found in the content of @TeacherToolkit audience. What is quite interesting, is that rarely use the #education hashtag. Perhaps it’s time to consider …
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Popular Biography Words

These are the words most commonly found in the bios of our @TeacherToolkit audience.

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Popular Time To Post

It will come as no surprise that our audience – largely teachers – share updates in the evenings after a long-working day in school. This data presents the opportune time to share content while followers are active on Twitter; so there you go people who are keen to get their products in front of schools and teachers – don’t tweet during ‘office hours’.

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Post Type

In January 2017 I made a promise to start sharing more video content – I think I’ve done quite well. On our side, this has increased engagement and enabled followers to understand the context of written word, data and research much more easily; you can see that video content is largely unseen or unused by the vast majority of our followers. After all, the camera isn’t for everybody. A non-media tweet represents the typical ‘status update’ or conversation between two Twitter accounts.

Social Rank

Private or Public?

This is the breakdown of @TeacherToolkit private & public accounts. 17.3% of our followers have a locked down account. This can be a number of reasons – safeguarding from students; protecting personal views from their employer; wanting to maintain some privacy.


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Top Follower Locations

85% of our followers on Twitter are broadly based in the U.K. with USA, Australia, Canada and UAE following closely behind.

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Using Social Rank, we were able to locate ‘profanity usage breakdown’ and discover which accounts used profanity in their status updates – or when angry about something in the news. It makes for some very interesting analysis!

Social Rank

At the time of writing, @TeacherToolkit on Twitter has 190,000 followers. On other channels, this figure is approaching 250,000. I share these stats so that you can calculate the percentage figures above. Thank you to Social Rank for providing this data to help find the best followers, most valuable followers, and most engaged followers on Twitter. These are generic terms used on Twitter and not mine.

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