13 essential Twitter stats to guide your strategy

29 Aug

Understanding user trends and behavior for a platform like Twitter is essential for getting the most out of your marketing efforts.

After all, there are roughly 500K tweets sent per minute, so while that may seem like more than enough opportunity for reaching vast audiences, you’ll also want to ensure you’re on the radar of those who matter most to your business.

To simplify things, we’ve compiled a list of 13 Twitter statistics to help give you a sense of who’s on the platform, usage and more.

Let’s dive in!

1. Twitter has 139 million monetizable daily active users

For the first time earlier this year, Twitter shared insight into its daily active users number, which at the time checked in at 126 million, and has since increased to 139 million monetizable daily active users in Q2 2019.

The “monetizable” part is actually a key component of this Twitter stat, as the company has stated that its daily active user totals only reflect accounts that can see advertisements, which are not necessarily present for those using third-party apps. This differs significantly from similar stats shared by other networks.

2. Billions of people see tweets each month via third-party platforms

To further demonstrate the above caveat, in 2017, then-Twitter CFO and COO Anthony Noto estimated that 1.6 billion unique visitors per month see tweets from Twitter via third-party platforms, specifically citing platforms like television.

Of all the Twitter stats, this one probably best encapsulates the difficulty in truly capturing data for things like impressions and engagement when it comes to measuring tweet or ad performance. But even if that number has since changed, it’s still likely in the ballpark and more than enough to continue to warrant your attention.

3. 38% of U.S. adults aged 18-29 use Twitter

To kick off 2019, Twitter’s largest age group was young adults aged 18-29, which comprised 38% and actually indicated a slight decrease from around the same time a year ago (pictured below).

twitter demographics infographic - twitter stats

twitter demographics infographic - twitter stats

Decline aside, this still means Twitter is a great platform for brands that are targeting Gen Z and Millennials, especially with 32% of U.S. teens surveyed in 2018 reporting that they use Twitter.

Using a tool like Sprout Social, you can easily find your own demographics breakdown within our Twitter Analytics report.

twitter demographics in sprout social - twitter stats

twitter demographics in sprout social - twitter stats

It’s a good idea to check this information every so often so that you can ensure your followers align with your target audience. If your main follower segments are a stark contrast from who you’re trying to create content for, you probably need to revisit your strategy with a quick Twitter audit.

4. 26% of U.S. accounts use Twitter multiple times a day

While keeping people coming back and wanting more can be a tall order, more than a decade later, Twitter’s audience is still notably engaged. In terms of U.S. users, 26% check Twitter multiple times a day, on top of the additional 20% browsing at least once.

Being mindful of all of the different ways people use Twitter is important to consider when carving out your own Twitter content strategy. You also could utilize a tool like ViralPost by Sprout Social which does the work for you in determining optimal send times for maximum engagement from your tweets.

5. 80% of Twitter users access the app on mobile

Twitter is an extremely mobile-first app, which even resulted in an overhaul to the desktop app design in July 2019 so that it contains similar features to mobile.

As such, this particular Twitter stat isn’t all that surprising as a whopping 80% of users access Twitter via the mobile experience, which of course means you need to keep mobile optimization in mind when creating your content.

Among the mobile content considerations are staying away from transparent images (the mobile version gives them a random background color), focus on 2:1 image ratios and opt for short videos and GIFs.

6. 71% of Twitter users get their news from the platform

If you’re going to be targeting users on a platform, it’s a good idea to know their favorite ways to use that platform. And when it comes to Twitter, it’s news.

71% of Twitter users are checking the platform for news updates and using it to stay informed. Given the fact that nearly a quarter of all verified users on Twitter are journalists, this statistic comes as no surprise.

Furthermore, 12% of all US adults get their news from Twitter, making it the third most popular social media platform for news behind Facebook and YouTube, respectively.

7. Only 3% of tweets mention a brand directly with a customer service issue

Twitter is a great platform for customer service. Nearly half of all consumers use social media to raise concerns with brands, and Twitter is one of the most common outlets for getting help.

That being said, it’s important to note that only 3% of tweets that discuss comments or concerns with a brand actually mention that brand by directly @ing their Twitter account.

This means you need to set alerts on your brand’s name, do regular searches of your brand and industry and employ other social listening tactics to ensure you catch every single mention of your business.

You can set up searches directly in your Sprout Social dashboard for keywords surrounding your brand and different variations of your brand name.

social listening on twitter - twitter stats

social listening on twitter - twitter stats

8. 40% of Twitter users say they’ve purchased a product due to an influencer’s tweet about it

Influencer marketing is alive and well, and it’s not only on Instagram. In fact, Twitter is a great place to follow influencers and learn more about their recommendations as well.

As many as 40% of Twitter users say they’ve purchased a product because an influencer mentioned it in a tweet. In fact, 49% of all Twitter users rely on recommendations from influencers on the platform.

9. Users spend 4% more time on Twitter during a live event

People love to live tweet events. When it comes to things like debates, awards shows, sporting events and music festivals, Twitter is the place to be.

Tweet stats show that users actually spend about 4% more time on Twitter when a live event is going on. This means that running ad campaigns during large live events can potentially help to get more eyes on your account than during other times of the year.

10. Tweets with one hashtag are 69% more likely to be retweeted than those with two hashtags

Knowing how to build your tweets for maximum reach and engagement is key to a successful Twitter strategy. And hashtags are an integral part of that.

Studies show that tweets with one hashtag are 69% more likely to be retweeted than tweets with two hashtags. It was also found that tweets including hashtags are 33% more likely to be retweeted than tweets that don’t have any hashtags.

And to top it off, that same source dictates that hashtags with 11 or more characters are 117% more likely to be retweeted.

So, what’s the main takeaway? You need hashtags. But it looks like just a single hashtag is your sweet spot. And it needs to be a long one.

Review Sprout’s guide to How to Find Popular Twitter Hashtags for additional inspiration.

11. Around 6,000 tweets are sent every second

Back in 2007, 5,000 tweets in a day was at one point a milestone, but fast forward to now when an average of 6,000 tweets are sent every second, and you really start to get a feel for how far the platform has come.

Sprinkled throughout those tweets are ads (promoted tweets), which collectively made up 86% of Twitter’s revenue in 2018.

Ultimately, whether you’re creating tweets for organic, paid, or both, keeping tabs on performance is essential so you always know what is (or isn’t) working. Turning to Twitter analytics tools to help measure your metrics is a great way to save time from having to gather data manually, as well as having a centralized place to track historical performance over time.

12. 19% of consumers have messaged a brand on Twitter

Among the Twitter stats that can be found in the 2018 Sprout Index, 19% of consumers have turned to Twitter to message a brand and of the 43% of consumers using Twitter regularly, 27% follow brands.

As we near the end of our list, it should be clear by now how essential it is for brands to not only be present on Twitter, but play an active role in things like customer service, responding to followers and making the most of a platform so chock-full of engaged participants.

13. Twitter ad engagement has been on the rise

In Q3 2018, Twitter reported a 50% year over year increase in ad engagement, in addition to a 14% decline in cost-per-engagement.

Meaning, the number of people that are engaging with ads on the platform has doubled while the cost to businesses has decreased. If you haven’t yet started experimenting with advertising on Twitter, this trend alone may be signaling a great time to give it a try.

Discover your own Twitter stats with Sprout Social

With our list wrapped, it’s now time for you to dig into your own Twitter stats. By signing up for a free trial with Sprout, or requesting a personalized demo, you can gain access to various Twitter tools, from scheduling to tracking metrics and uncovering your best times to post.

Any other key Twitter statistics we missed? Let us know in the comments!

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