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6 Data-Driven Answers To Your Boss’s Biggest Twitter Questions

Marketing managers are investing in marketing on Twitter and addressing customer service on the network like never before. When your boss comes a-calling towards the end of the week, month, or quarter, be sure that you’ve got the information he or she is looking for, whether bad or good, and some ideas about how to fix what’s gone wrong or highlight your social media magic.

Here I’ve laid out some questions your boss might ask, and the best possible (data-driven) responses.

Your boss wants to know: “How’s the _____ campaign going?” 

What to do: Break out The Megaphone. 

Screen Shot 2014-05-20 at 4.23.57 PMWhen your boss wants a high-level look at what you’re doing and the impact it’s having, there’s nothing more useful than a megaphone graphic.

Perched atop our Twitter Account Report, this graphic gives a panoramic view of engagement efforts and effects. How many Tweets did we send? What was the outcome? Give me an idea of what our social media presence looks like without feeding me every single metric. These are the requests your manager is really making when he or she asks how a campaign is faring.

Instead of trying to decode which information your boss is looking for, incorporate this graphic in your presentation or department email. You can even stack megaphones for the past few months in one report to show progress you’ve made in an easily graspable manner.

This graphic also offers a magnificently easy and visually accessible way to educate your higher-ups about the difference between “Unique People” and “Total Engagement,” between “Potential Reach,” and “Potential Impressions.”

Your boss wants to know: “Are we getting more followers?” 

Your response: Yes! And here’s why. 

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Impress your manager by giving him or her not just the what, but the why. Instead of providing a simple “We’ve gained 2,000 followers in the month of May so far,” show him or her a chart over time, and offer context.

For instance, with the chart above in hand, you could say: “In the past two months, we’ve gained 2,000 followers. See where Followers Added peaks? That was the day we started the campaign on Twitter and got some pickup from Good Morning America. There’s some lull in Followers Added the next day, as we expected, but we’re debuting our next campaign on Monday to pick our Followers Added count back up again.?”

“Plus, the really good news is – that blue line headed up means our overall trajectory is increased followers with no significant dips.”

Your boss wants to know: “How much engagement did we get?” 

Your response: We got an incredible amount of engagement as percentage of followers – more/less/on par with our competitors. 

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When your boss asks what your engagement looks like for any given period, chances are he or she really wants to know how your engagement is stacking up to that of your competitors. So the only thing to do is run a competitive report.

The Total Engagement comparison portion of a competitive report offers a holistic way of looking at your engagement vs. that of your competitors, since it takes into account not just the amount of engagement each brand is seeing, but also what the engagement is as % of followers.

That “Engagement as % of followers” metric is important because giant market size and thus large engagement numbers don’t necessarily reflect how engaged all of a brand’s followers are, and vice versa. Say I’m a sports team in a mid-sized city with way smaller engagement numbers than, for example, the L.A. Lakers, who call a mega-city their home – simply because my population pool and thus fan pool is smaller. That makes me sad. The battle of engagement seems like one I’m destined to lose. I cry myself to sleep at night.

But then I realize that my engagement as % of followers is 60%. That means that the amount of engagement I’m seeing is 60% of my entire follower count. I examine the same metric for my competitors from bigger cities. Their engagement rates are slightly below mine. This chart – and way of looking at engagement – gives a much more accurate portrayal of where my brand stands than simply paying attention to the engagement number itself, and it’s a vital perspective to give your boss when he or she starts asking about engagement rates.

Your boss wants to know: “Who’s interacting with us?” 

Your response: These are our most influential followers. 

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One way to give your boss a portrait of the Twitter users interacting with your brand is by providing a live-linked list of your most influential followers, along with their basic stats – from Followers to Klout scores to most-Tweeted-about topics (click on the image above to get a closer view). This way your boss gets an idea of what kinds of people your brand is attracting on Twitter, and the option to click through and view their profiles, without having to sift through tons of data – that’s your job :-).

Your boss wants to know: “Why aren’t we seeing more sales from this?” 

Your response: Here’s what’s happening between Twitter and our site. We’re working on some strategies to make the conversion rates better. 

This question allows a tool like the Twitter Traffic Analysis report to really shine. First show your boss what the funnel looks like.

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This gives a helpful overview of what’s been going on, good or bad, and provides a solid place to begin the discussion about strategies that have/haven’t been working and what future strategy looks like. Then you can drill deeper, letting your boss know how many people are coming, and how many people are returning. This is the place where you can investigate whether it’s Twitter strategy or the quality/direction of your site’s content that’s been problematic.

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Looking at bounce rates and page views per visit can further this discussion.

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And you can end on a high note by showing which Tweets drove the most traffic and explaining how you’re designing your Twitter strategy for the following month with this in mind.

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 12.06.18 PMYour boss wants to know: “How’s customer service going?” 

Your response: We’re getting better all the time! Average response time is at an all-time low, and we’ve dealt with 867 customers in the past month alone. 

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Give your boss a broad overview of the numbers for your customer service handle. If he or she wants to drill deeper, you’ve got your Twitter Customer Service report on hand with detailed charts that show everything from Twitter Account Activity by Hour to the keywords most frequently used in customer service Tweets.

“So what’s our plan of attack for next month?”

The greatest advantage of going into a meeting with facts in hand is that planning for your social media department’s next phase is half as hard as it otherwise would be. You know what’s working, what’s not working, and (hopefully) how you want your brand to be perceived in the future. Now all you have to do is get creative.


Lucy Hitz

I’m the Head of Marketing Communications here at Simply Measured, where I'm responsible for our content program, social media marketing, PR, and comarketing ventures. I love yoga, The X-Files, peaty scotch, hiking, and poetry. If I were a social media channel, I’d want to be Instagram, but I think I’m Twitter.

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