Companies used to be able to fluff their twitter stats by counting all followers as impressions.
So tweet 10 times to your 100,000 fake followers and you magically have a million impressions.

Need 10 million impressions because you’re behind on your Earned Media Value forecast?

Nobody knows, despite what they may claim, which accounts are real versus robots.
Even twitter doesn’t know.

Now that twitter has come out with organic reach reports, the house of cards comes crashing down– for the 3rd party tool vendors and for people using these reports.

One of our friends runs social for one of the largest agencies in the world– his screenshot above.
Instead of the 27,000 reach from Sysomos, the actual reach was 1/18th that.

Because twitter doesn’t provide organic impressions in their API, even if you pay for the reporting, no tool vendor can accurately report here.

We’ve told twitter a few times that they need to get organic reporting right to be able to drive ad sales.
Certainly hiring a ton of sales people after the IPO is a normal thing to do. But we recommend educating clients instead of just selling to them.

Some people will be shocked at getting numbers 1/18th what they used to report.
  • Will they restate historicals so it doesn’t look like their current performance stinks?
  • Will they keep using the old method (assuming 100% coverage), since those numbers are “better”?
  • Will they decide that reporting impressions is a shell game, abandoning reach for engagement metrics?
  • Will they be unaware or apathetic, saying social metrics are hocus pocus anyway, since revenue is what counts?
1/18th is just barely above 5%.
That’s right in line with newsfeed coverage for brands on Facebook.
So is there cause for outrage?

Readers, what will you do about the new twitter organic insights?
Have you had a chance to play around with it yet?