UPDATE: Getting access to Twitter Analytics seems to be unclear in some cases. I posted this for anyone needing info on how to access it (please let me know if you still have trouble).

If you already have access to Organic Tweet Analytics, read on for one way to come up with content ideas…

Do you ever feel like some people “just get” content ideation? They’re creative. They know exactly what to write about and what their audience wants to hear?

Then some of us are like this kitten trying to play with a fake porcelain cat;

We try really hard, keep doing the same thing over and over, are clueless to what’s working and what’s not – but we still look pretty cute doing it 🙂

“Great” Content Creators Listen To Their Audience.

What separates most of those gifted creators? They listen to their audience.

For Twitter, it’s probably safe to assume that tweets that people have favorite would make for good article, blog posts, tools, ideas – because your  audience has told you they like the idea with their engagement. At the least, the contents of those tweets for some reason got their attention.

Fortunately for us, Twitter released a free and pretty robust analytics platform (that no one noticed).

The trouble is – if you simply just look at the raw numbers – # of favorites, clicks etc – impressions can skew the perception of popularity. For example, (obviously) when someone like Rand Fishkin retweets me – that Tweet is going to get more favorites because of more impressions. But this does not mean it had the highest percentage of impressions to favorites.

Abandoned Tweets

The other problem is – sometimes we tweet GREAT stuff. And then forget about it. I do this ALL of the time.

Don't let your forgotten tweets rot away like this abandoned car.

Don’t let your forgotten tweets rot away like this abandoned car.

And our old tweets end up like this car abandoned in the woods – lost and forgotten.

This post will show you a simple method for calculating “favorite rate” and then using it to find content ideas.

Let’s go!

Step One – Login & Export

First – login to Twitter Analytics at https://analytics.twitter.com. Then export your data by clicking the export button on the top right hand side;

twitter analytics export button

Download and open the spreadsheet.

Step Two – Prep The Spreadsheet

Let’s say we want to get a simple favorites rate. Here’s the way I did it (and believe me, I’m no excel wizard – I’m sure there’s fancier ways!)

You will be presented with a big wall of Twitter data. Yeah not that helpful on it’s own;

Make a new sheet where we are going to put only the metrics we care about at the moment;


Copy and paste in only the data we need to calculate favorite rate – which in this case would be twitter URL, tweet text, impressions and favorites;


Now we have the data we need in one simple sheet, and we’re ready to get the favorited rate.

Step Three – Calculate Favorite Rate

As noted at the beginning – we could be doing this for clicks, or emails too. But to get the rate, it’s just simply adding a new column and getting the percentage;


It’s not rocket science;

  • just divide favorites by impressions
  • set cell type to percentage

Step Four – Filter & Sort

Next, sort your spreadsheet descending by favorite rate;

You may notice that because Twitter does not have all past impression data, there’s some missing information at the top. So we’re going to set some filters;

  • Filter out any cells that say “#DIV/0!”
  • Filter out favorites less than 1-5 (You’ll have to play with this. I found that sometimes a tweet would get 1 favorite but such a low amount skewed the percentage;


Step Five – The Fun Part – Look For Ideas!

I’m looking for topic ideas (that I’ve probably forgotten about) that show promise for future posts, articles, speaking topics etc. here’s what I found;


I found this tweet from almost two months ago (I’d honestly forgotten about the tweet);

I found a fleeting opinion I shared one day, but apparently it resonates with others;

This would not only make for an interest article – but it could even be the title.

Lastly – A Confession

I also have a confession: I had to show GREAT restraint writing this post. I have more ideas for how to use the new Twitter Analytics than I know what to do with. I spent more hours than I care to admit, drafting a “how to use Twitter Analytics” post. Three times.

I never hit publish.

But I’m so excited about the possibilities of what can be done with Twitter Analytics, I wanted to share at least one tip out of the many screenshots I have collecting dust on my hard drive.

Let me know if YOU have any ways you’ve been using Twitter Analytics. OR if you want more! I’d love to share some more of my ideas with you if you’re interested!


About Dan Shure

Hi! I'm Dan Shure. I write all of the posts and host all of the podcast episodes you'll find on the Evolving SEO blog. Say hello on Twitter @dan_shure!


  • August 21, 2014 Reply

    Darren Moloney

    Can you get analytics data for Twitter without being an advertiser? Or is it just as simple as setting up and using Twitter Cards on your website?

    • August 21, 2014 Reply

      Dan Shure

      Hey Darren! You don’t even have to set up Twitter Cards. Anyone with a Twitter account can just go to Twitter Analytics and it’s all there for free. https://blog.twitter.com/2014/introducing-organic-tweet-analytics

    • August 22, 2014 Reply

      Dan Shure

      Hey Again

      So I’m actually trying to dig into this and figure it out. Maybe you DO need Twitter cards. I am trying to set up analytics in another Twitter account I have and having some trouble. I don’t remember any trouble at all for my own account though.

  • August 21, 2014 Reply

    Jeseph Meyers

    This is a great idea Dan! Finding tweets that, as you said, you’ve forgotten about is probably something that will happen for all of this.

    I admittedly haven’t gone deep enough into the new Twitter analytics so I’ll place my vote in for a continuation on this series.

    • August 21, 2014 Reply

      Dan Shure

      I’d highly recommend exploring it. There’s SO much in there. I’ll definitely be writing more, I have some very interesting findings!

  • September 25, 2014 Reply

    Kas Thomas

    Great post. I’m getting huge mileage out of Twitter Analytics. The Export feature, as you say, is fantastic. Lately the system has been buggy and there are some days when Analytics will show false-low impressions. Then later in the day they fix things and the numbers are suddenly right again. So if you see your impressions drop to nothing, don’t panic. It’s the system. DO raise a customer service issue with it; report it using the Help button so that Twitter knows about it. They’ll open a ticket and investigate within 24 hours.

    Yesterday I had a tweet go to 113,000 impressions (see my writeup of the case study at http://author-zone.com/tweet-went-viral/) and I never would have known about it, were it not for Analytics.

    Keep up the good work. Exciting stuff.

  • November 10, 2014 Reply

    Aviva Downing

    Hey Dan, Thanks for the post! Why did you choose to look at favorites instead of retweets? Would love to get your insight.

    • November 10, 2014 Reply

      Dan Shure

      GREAT question. I did look at RT’s when I was doing my analysis on my own – just didn’t publish it in this post. You can use any ‘interaction’ for this analysis, though – so RT rate is perfectly workable too. I would just be aware of what each action might mean. Favorites are like “I liked this” or “I want to save this for later”. And RT’s are like “This is something I want my audience to see” or “I think my followers would find value in this”. Both positive actions though 🙂

  • January 8, 2015 Reply

    Ben Sibley

    Looks like a great way to test the validity of a post concept, especially for intensive “big content”. With the data at hand, the tweets are almost like blog post MVPs.

    • January 8, 2015 Reply

      Dan Shure

      For sure – I think the only caveat is that some topics are time sensitive but for the ones that aren’t, it’s a great way to predict possible success.

Leave a Comment

Error: Please check your entries!