In 2012 Twitter launched a new expanded tweet experience when they introduced Twitter Cards. These cards allow approved publishers to display more information than just the 140 characters—headlines, article summaries, images and much more can appear in a single tweet when an expansion link is clicked. Twitter has now rolled out comprehensive analytics so publishers and others using Twitter Cards can gain a much greater understanding of how, what and who is engaging with their content through Twitter.
There are three main navigation points within the analytics: URL Clicks, Install Attempts and Retweets (Note: These cards can also be used by developers for mobile app installs, but for the purpose of this article I’m going to focus on other areas).
Within the URL Clicks publishers can get a tremendous amount of information about how many tweets, impressions and URL clicks are going to your content under the Snapshot category. Moreover, publishers can view how many of those clicks and impressions are coming from tweets they have sent out compared to tweets sent from readers and others.
Like all good analytic platforms the date range can be changed to gauge how Twitter followers have responded in a set period of time—a powerful insight when monitoring the launch of a new feature or special project. For more context of how Twitter is performing over time, the analytics dashboard provides a line charge showing the change over time relationship between the tweets, impressions and clicks; including the percentage change that has happened.
Another chart provided allows publishers to view the performance of the various card types they might be using. There are currently six different cards a publisher can choose from: summary, product, photo, summary large image, player, and app. In particular, this chart will show how your cards are performing compared to others using that same type of card. When appropriate, Twitter will even offer tips in the sidebar on how to improve performance.
Other charts show what links are generating the most impressions and clicks; a list of influencers who are sharing your content and driving the most impressions and clicks; the individual tweets that have generated the most clicks; and the sources for how the tweets were sent out, whether from a third-party tool, an app, the tweet button or a variety of other sources. With the knowledge of who the influencers are that are driving traffic to your site, you could reach out to them and strengthen your relationship—perhaps even develop a virtual “street team” who can more effectively advocate on your behalf.
Publishers can dig even further into the information to see how their tweets are performing with a quick view of the total number of favorites, retweets and replies. If that weren’t enough, there’s demographic data too.
The number of new and total followers can be tracked over time (and unfollows) plus other standard information you might expect, like location and gender. Moreover, the new analytics offers some other compelling insights, such as your followers top interests and what other Twitter accounts the majority of your tweeps follow. Having an understanding of what and who your followers engage with could improve your effectiveness at delivering a compelling message.
Before you can gain access to all this great information, however, you must first embed the Twitter Card code on your site and then validate and apply for approval. A small price to pay for this level of social media insight.