The graphic below was originally published as part of a post on the Brand Aperture blog in May of last year exploring the difficulties of measuring influence on Twitter.
Since last May, a lot of things have changed in regard to Twitter. First and foremost, Twitter has grown exponentially. At that time, there were around 26 million people using the platform; that number has risen to around 175 million. And the growth in the amount of posts is staggering — from 65 million posts per day then to 200 million posts per day now.
But what prompted me to first create the graphic and write the post was the rise of services like Klout and Twitalyzer, who try to measure the “influence” a person has on Twitter. And those have grown exponentially as well… in terms of venture capital, sophistication of algorithms and buy-in (from at least a certain portion of Twitter marketing celebs).
I didn’t write the post from the position that measuring potential market influence via Twitter was a bad idea, or that it was impossible. It was intended to point out that there are many more things that go into measuring the influence of Twitter than to look at only Twitter itself. (That’s just a measure of how good someone is at Twitter.) And, ideally, it was intended to help build understanding of what really needs to be measured to capture the true influence of Twitter. That is a much bigger, but more important, effort.
That’s where the graphic came from. I wanted to: (1) Illustrate why looking at only Twitter to measure influence was flawed; and (2) think through some of the paths that needed to be measured to find the real Influence of Twitter… or actual ROI.
But, honestly, I feel that goal — to explore measuring the activity the platform can spark — is precipitating more questions than answers. So tomorrow, I’ll begin to delve into some details of the map to try and answer those questions. And I hope you’ll add your take as well.