Ask me what social network I recommend to B2C companies, and it would be Facebook and/or Instagram followed by Pinterest and/or Twitter. For B2B companies, it would be LinkedIn followed by Twitter or Facebook. Clearly it’s easy to lose site of Twitter for marketing amongst newer and sexier rivals. But as a 2nd or 3rd social network for A/B testing, I will always recommend it as an option. I hope after checking out these Twitter user statistics, you will also see why and how you can use Twitter in your marketing efforts.
Furthermore, for those that have seen me speak, you know that Twitter, like Instagram, gives you the ability to engage with other users as if you were a person and not a business. This means that, unlike Facebook or LinkedIn, company accounts can do a lot more things using organic social media without necessarily paying to play, although Paid Social will help accelerate your marketing on any platform.
While it’s not as sexy as TikTok, Twitter continues to be in the news. After all, our currently-controversial President Trump is an avid user. He is famous for using the social media platform to present his ideas to the American people without going through the media or even his Press Secretary. In addition, the news often publishes exchanges between the President and other world leaders, in particular Kim Jong Un.
At the same time, there are a lot of people who think that Twitter is passé. After all, the platform doesn’t have a huge number of members, all things considered in relation to other social networks. However, as we will see from these Twitter user statistics, there’s a lot more to this story. In fact, Twitter is as influential as ever, especially as it leverages its value as one of the few places people can openly discuss politics – and anything, really.
Twitter user statistics basics: Demographics
Like many social media networks, Twitter has a wide variety of people using the platform. Granted, there are many fewer Twitter members than Facebook members, but its demographics are very interesting. Let’s take a look at a few.
There are 330 Million monthly users.
This is about the same saturation as LinkedIn. And like LinkedIn, Twitter is an older social network that’s had plenty of time to mature.
Also, keep in mind that:
187 million of these monthly users log on every day and can be monetized.
It has been pointed out by several sources that this method of counting subscribers is unique. Other social networks will tell you how many people log in every month, but don’t take into account whether or not they view advertisements on the platform. That’s Twitter’s definition of “monetizable,” and it helps us as marketers know how big our potential audience really is.
There are 68.07 million MAU’s from the United States.
Statista points out that the second and third-highest numbers of active users come from Japan and India, respectively. It’s worthy of note that the first two countries have a very high average income, and are among the most internet-connected in the world.
It’s also noteworthy that,
22% of American adults use Twitter.
While this is definitely not the huge number of adults who use Facebook or Instagram, that’s still a lot of potential customers for you to reach through the platform. Lastly, it’s worth mentioning that the influence of Twitter goes far beyond just its users. Unlike Facebook, Twitter sees a lot of people viewing its pages who don’t have an account, or who aren’t logged into their account when checking it. One reason for this is the hugely influential people who have a Twitter presence, as well as the concise nature of posts.
Twitter has been cleaning up its patch lately.
Like all social networks, Twitter has some potential for consumers to abuse the platform. Think about the downright abusive tweets exchanged between sworn social enemies, for example. Another issue Twitter has dealt with in recent years is fake accounts. Everyone who uses social media worries about “trolls,” who stir up trouble under assumed online identities. Or cyber bullying, which has been rampant online for a significant period of the social media age. Although Twitter is friendlier towards contentious debate than others, there’s still been quite a bit of improvement.
50% of tweets removed for abusive content were removed by Twitter’s computer programs.
The rest of tweet removals were done by humans reading flagged posts. That’s not to say that Twitter is non-controversial, however. For example, they didn’t remove the tweet from Kim Jong Un to Donald trump which called him a “dotard,” nor did they remove the retort from Trump calling Kim “rocket man.” No, these types of exchanges from world leaders are OK, even if your daugher’s school bully can’t call her an “idiot” and get away with it.
Donald Trump lost 300,000 “followers” who were deemed to be automated or fake accounts.
I, for one, would love to know how many Barack Obama or Katy Perry lost, given that their Twitter feeds are more popular than Trump’s feed. But the message seems pretty clear: Twitter is more interested in having genuine humans using its site than keeping their number of users high. For us as marketers, this is excellent. After all, we aren’t paying to “reach” people who don’t exist, nor are we “feeding the trolls” with affiliate marketing rewards or other perks.
Twitter user statistics show its users are influential and affluent.
This is a fact that seems to be largely independent of the national origin of each user. While it’s definitely true that in developing countries only the better-off have internet access consistently enough for social media usage, we must remember that wealthy countries also have the most Twitter users.
With this in mind, here are the raw numbers:
83% of world leaders use Twitter.
I’d be interested to know if “world leaders” includes local politicians, but we do know that national-level leaders from most countries are represented. Where else would you find Kim Jong Un? Most avenues of communication are restricted for North Koreans. Iran has some movers and shakers here, as does China and Russia. This is one reason why controversy is allowed on Twitter. This allowance means that world leaders have a place to express themselves somewhere that the entire world can easily access.
Almost 25% of verified accounts belong to journalists.
Verified accounts are those where Twitter has verified account ownership, and if we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll admit that journalists are some of the most influential people out there. After all, they tell us what’s going on in the world. As a result of this high concentration of journalists, Twitter is often used to break news from around the world. Even when it isn’t broken here, a lot of people will see the news pop up in their feed before seeing it on TV or their favorite news service.
Speaking of which,
73% of Twitter users follow at least one journalist.
This is just another way in which journalists are able to be influential on Twitter. And, it really shows what one of the consumer priorities is for their Twitter accounts: keeping up with current events. This is another reason why Twitter allows more controversy to be published than a lot of other platforms do.
At least 80% of Twitter users are “affluent millennials,” according to Twitter data.
One thing that seems to be common among all social networks is that the average user tends to be younger than the population at large. In other words, there aren’t that many senior citizens using any of these platforms, with the exception of Facebook. And even on Facebook, seniors are underrepresented. Yet what I find more interesting is that affluence seems to be such an important predictor of who’s on Twitter. Then again, if you consider who has the biggest followings for personal accounts, the young and famous are overrepresented.
I’d be interested in finding out what percentage of world leaders on Twitter are also “affluent millennials,” but the chances are we’ll never know. Either way, it is easy to conclude that Twitter members are real movers and shakers in society.
Want to improve customer service or your company reputation? Use Twitter.
Given that the most influential people are often on Twitter, it stands to reason that their opinion of your company is really important. Unlike most social media platforms, however, Twitter can be used both for sponsored posts/ads and for customer service applications. You’ll see a bit of customer service on Facebook, but not generally on the other social media sites.
So, it’s not surprising that,
66% of American companies with 100 or more employees use Twitter for marketing.
To be sure, that’s probably not quite as many as the ones that use Facebook, but there aren’t as many users on Twitter, either. Plus, with Twitter you really have to keep maintaining your account and continuing to send tweets.
47% of American Twitter users prefer culturally relevant brands.
If you’ve read corporate Twitter feeds lately, you’ll probably see that a lot of them use the platform to announce their latest corporate advocacy efforts. For example, some cosmetic companies pride themselves on environmental friendliness, vegan ingredients, or a refusal to engage in animal testing. Tweets on this sort of topic is common in the beauty industry, along with product launch announcements. In other industries, you might see a car manufacturer bragging about their latest environmental ratings. Major influencers like Elon Musk are well-known for bragging about their company’s corporate citizenship priorities.
85% of American small businesses find Twitter indispensable for customer service.
One of the advantages of Twitter over some other platforms for customer complaints like Yelp is that the business has an easy way to respond. All an unhappy customer has to do is direct their tweet at the business’ Twitter account. Likewise, Twitter consumer users are the type of person who like to broadcast their thoughts in real time. And as every savvy business owner knows, there’s no time like immediately after a customer complaint to deal with the issue. After all, you don’t want hard feelings to fester.
65% of customers expect companies to leverage social media for customer service.
It would be interesting to find out exactly why this is, but here’s a good guess: on social media, you can send a message directly to a company and know it’ll be read by someone who really cares. No sitting on hold for hours, or waiting for a chat-based CSR to become available. Instead, companies are expected to reply back soon without the customer having to dedicate all that time to getting a response.
Which leads me to the final Twitter user statistic in this category:
77% of Twitter users say they’re more positive about a brand after the brand responds to their tweet.
To me, this statistic reflects the reality that customers love individualized attention. After all, nothing says “we care” like spending the time to read and respond to customer feedback. Yet this isn’t all that these responses can do for you: other people get to see how much you care about customers. Pretty cheap public relations, don’t you think?
Twitter is effective as advertising, too.
Although these other Twitter user statistics are useful in understanding both the potential audience and the benefits of Twitter business account usage, it’s also important to know that Twitter is a great place to advertise, as well. Keep in mind that Twitter adverts can include regular tweets, in addition to video content and links to other websites, among other things.
Average Twitter Ads ROI is 40% Higher than Other Channels
When I gave my example of A/B testing over multiple social networks at the beginning of this post, this is the type of test I will do with clients: Spread ad spend over multiple social networks and compare apples and apples. This statistic, straight from Twitter, is a powerful one that hints at the potential ROI from using its ads platform.
Twitter’s Cost Per Engagement is down by 12%.
According to Twitter, this is largely the case because users are more willing to view advertising material than they once were. In other words, a Twitter advertising dollar goes farther than it did last year because the advertisement is more likely to reach its audience.
Consider video: the CPE on this type of advert is now 50% lower.
Like with most other social networks, Twitter users love to watch videos. After all, you can watch a video in just a few minutes and absorb a lot of information. And remember, just like with the old TV ads, a creative video can be quite memorable.
In a recent quarter, engagement with ads on Twitter increased by 23%.
That’s a pretty stunning figure, when you think about it, especially since Twitter users tend not to spend all day on the site. No wonder CPE is falling for Twitter customers!
Overall, the takeaway is that Twitter users tend to be affluent, influencers or world leaders, and young. They like to tweet to project their own thoughts, and discover those of others. At the same time, they love to interact with their favorite brands.
Which of these Twitter user statistics convinced you to take tweeting more seriously?
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