Twitter Study on Engagement Reveals Nothing Surprising

I’m not sure how I missed this, as I tend to check Twitter’s blog pretty regularly, but earlier in the month the social network posted a study they performed on what fuels the engagement of Tweets. While I wouldn’t call anything published in this Twitter engagement study “shocking”, it does contain some good data (and who among us doesn’t like that?).

For their study on user engagement, Twitter “analyzed millions of Tweets sent by verified users in the US” across the following topic areas: government, news, sports, TV, & music. Since they needed concrete, measurable features to perform their analysis, Twitter went with the following attributes of a Tweet to compare:

  • Photos
  • #hashtags
  • Links
  • Videos
  • Tweets containing a number or a digit — i.e. a sports score or an official stat

This Twitter engagement study specifically focused on Retweets alone, so mentions & favorites were not included in their data. They created a baseline by calculating the average number of Retweets during a specified time period, or, as Twitter put it, “the numbers of Tweets that each user would expect to get anyway”.

The results?

  • Photos average a 35% boost in Retweets
  • Videos get a 28% boost
  • Quotes get a 19% boost in Retweets
  • Including a number receives a 17% bump in Retweets
  • Hashtags receive a 16% boost

The blog post included a data chart, which has been embedded below. You can see the totals across all categories, and drill-down to individual areas if you wish.


Of course, the results of this Twitter engagement study varied by category. You can view each of the category results using these links:

TV | News | Music | Government & Politics | Sports

What do you think of this case study? Anything stand out as particularly interesting to you?

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