Make Twitter a Window On Your Life

Twitter_logo_blueIf you’re on Twitter, it’s likely that you are an information junkie. Twitter, which celebrated its sixth birthday in March, has more than 140 million active users who collectively send about 340 million tweets every day.

Twitter a long time ago stopped being just another social media platform.

Each of those 140 million users is a person or a business or a brand that chooses to get involved and put their thoughts and opinions out there. But where do they go? What does it all mean?

Unless you’re a real celebrity with upwards of half a million loyal followers, each snippet you broadcast might seem insignificant (and it very well might be if all you share is your breakfast menu), but when combined, your tweets can tell a lot.

Your Twitter habits, word choices and retweets can be analyzed using a number of Web services that will extract some insight from your own usage of the site and what your few or many tweets each day are doing in that massive digital ecosystem.

Statistics

TweetStats.com will generate a series of graphs that give a breakdown of your Twitter usage. Average tweets per day and per month, tweet density, aggregate daily tweets, aggregate hourly tweets, who you retweet the most, reply-to stats and what interface you use to access the site are all monitored. The program also produces a tweet could and a hashtag cloud.

Enter your user name, “Sit back, relax” (as TweetStats.com helpfully tells you) while it is “Graphin’ your Stats.”

It took about 10 minutes for the program to retrieve and analyze the 1,000 or so tweets I have published over the past three years (I am evidently more of a consumer than a tweeter).

The Archivist analyzes and archives tweets. Sign in with your Twitter account and search a word, hashtag or user (enter from:username) to see tweet volume over time, top users, tweet versus retweet, top words, top referenced URLs and sources.

As explained on the website: “The Archivist cannot go back in time. So, when you begin an archive, you will only see at most the 500 last tweets about that topic. Once you begin a search, The Archivist will start monitoring that term. Once you’ve started an archive, The Archivist will do its best to capture every tweet that matches the criteria for that search.”

Archiving your own user name will give you an in-depth look at your own Twitter habits. Archiving keywords for topics you discuss on Twitter often will enable you to spot trends, identify other regular tweeters on the same subject and save all the information.

TweetGrader will answer one pressing question: how influential are you?

TweetGrader, by HubSpot, a marketing software developer, measures the reach, and therefore the influence and impact of your tweets. The system considers your updates, how many retweets you get, your follow-to-following ratio (the higher the ratio the better) and who follows you and their influence, to calculate a rank and a grade compared with other users of the site.

My rank is 2,262,046 out of 10,897,267. Lady Gaga, the most followed on Twitter with 23,782,689 followers, is ranked 65,822. The Jakarta Globe, which currently has 93,984 followers, is ranked 1,668: the high ranking is most likely thanks to retweets, word usage and ranking of followers, which affects each tweet’s reach and impact.

Searching

AllMyTweets.com allows you to view all your tweets on one page. It’s a mini timeline of your Twitter life, and is a useful tool if you’d like to go back in time and find links that you have put out into the world. AllMyTweets maintains the shortened or full length links as a hyperlink, so you can access the connect straight from the page. Having your entire Twitter stream laid out this way allows you to spot patterns and word choices easily.

TwimeMachine.com also produces a timeline of your tweets, and has a tool to search words in your timeline, which is extremely helpful when trying to track back and find a particular tweet. Each tweet includes the timestamp, but links are not active.

Neither of these tools requires a password or app authorization, so you can easily enter another Twitter user’s name to have their timeline, links and timestamps laid out neatly for you to read and scroll through.

Unfollowing

If you’re self-conscious, it’s best to stay away from tools that let you know when someone has abandoned your feed.

Unfollowr sends you a direct message to your Twitter account, and an e-mail alert (optional), when someone has unfollowed you. It’s reliable and easy to use. Simply register and wait for the notification.

Qwitter does essentially the same thing, but also links directly to TwitterCounter.com, a powerful Twitter analysis website that offers some features for free and others for a fee.

Published on May 5, 2012 in Jakarta Globe newspaper

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