pulp and pith … current affairs blog

Twitter stats are a nice way to pass the time

Posted on: January 29, 2009

I am trying to get a Twitter widget to show up in my blog’s sidebar, but so far no dice. Maybe WordPress is not Twitter-friendly. I will keep experimenting. The Flash one doesn’t appear at all, and the HTML one only displays the title and the ‘Follow me’ link. Bah.

Speaking of Twitter, a post at the Online Journalism Blog (click!), suggesting 10 Twitter users student journos would benefit from following, has inadvertently introduced me to the weird and wonderful world of Twitter stats.

Twitter is a new found land, and intrepid folk are sticking their little flags into it left right and centre. There’s a buzz around Twitter precisely because it’s just the beginning and people want to be in the thick of it, watching it evolve – either that or people are licking their lips, anticipating ill omens and implosions.

If you are minded to harness the information Twitter picks up about you as you micr0-blog, let some program or other crunch your numbers. The results will be packaged into pleasing graph, list or number form, which you can use to compare yourself to fellow Twitterers.

What are you waiting for? Go find out just how high your Twitter profile is! Exactly how popular you are! What day of the week you are most likely to Tweet on! Roll up, roll up!

If nothing else it keeps you on your toes.

The first one I tried was Twitter Grader, which is “a free tool for measuring your marketing mojo”.

It’s pretty simple. You type in your Twitter username, it thinks for a bit, and then it chunders out your grade, which is a mark out of 100. Yesterday I scored a pathetic 31/100, today I got 41/100, mainly because I commented on the Online Journalism Blog post mentioned above.

The best way to use Twitter Grader is to revisit the site over a period of time. That way you are able to see how your grade changes as you build your online presence. If you’re a stats nerd, you could even plot a graph. Time in the x, grade in the y: nifty.

The Twitter Grader site also lists the top 15 most elite Twitterers in any given location. However, location merely means the place a person has typed into their Twitter profile, not real-time location.

Tweet Stats is more wide-ranging, as it lets you see what Twittery habits you keep.

For example, did you know that I have never used Twitter on a Thursday between 4pm and 9pm? How fascinating is that?

You probably don’t care. That’s fine. But I think that these colourful graphs and word clouds and silly little transparent squares are a great tool for anyone keen to evaluate how they use Twitter and identify areas they could improve on.

The stats have shown me that I’m not a very conversational Twitterer. I rarely aim comments at others. That’s something I need to work on. You’d think shyness wouldn’t work on the internet!

As I don’t have a funky enough phone or PDA to use any of the mobile device Twitter apps out there, my rambling evaluation must end. The next blog post will be shorter, I think.

Say, what do you think of Twitter stats? Did I miss out any essential number crunchers? Fill me in.

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2 Responses to "Twitter stats are a nice way to pass the time"

The easiest way to integrate Twitter with WordPress is with RSS. Under your Dashboard’s ‘Widgets’ page, add the RSS widget and then point it towards your Twitter feed (which there’s a link to in the right-hand column of your Twitter profile). You can then specify how many entries it should show and move it into the position of your choice like any other widget. Hope that helps!

It works! Yes! Thanks for that.

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