Sysomos has done some interesting “research” (for lack of a better term), and found, from analyzing 1.2 billion tweets over the past couple of months, that 71% of tweets produce no reaction, 6% are retweeted, and 23% get an @reply.
There are a few things about these “findings” (for lack of a better term), that make me wonder:
1. How others have interpreted the findings. Wired magazine ran an article on the Sysomos “study” (for lack of a better term), running the headline It’s Not Just You: 71 Percent of Tweets Are Ignored. Huffington Post ran a similar article. Only problem here, folks, is that in the Sysomos post on its site, the word “ignored” is never used. Sysomos isn’t saying that 71% of tweets are ignored — simply that they produce no reaction.
2. How Sysomos determines what a reaction is. Apparently, if a tweet isn’t retweeted or replied to, then it gets no “reaction.” If this was a valid measure, then pretty much all of television advertising would be wasted (which it might very well be) unless someone saw a commercial and immediately jumped up to make a phone call to order something or ran out to the store to buy something. Advertisers believe, however, that the ads they run create brand awareness and shape brand perceptions. Is it not possible that tweets can be similar to ads in that regard? If so, then many tweets may very produce a “reaction”, even if we can’t measure it.
3. What the distribution of “no reaction” tweets is by tweeter. What I really would have liked to see from Sysomos is what percentage of tweeters get no reaction to all there tweets, or get no reaction to a majority of their tweets. And on top of that, some segmentation of tweeters by number of tweets or number of followers. Look: If you have one follower, who doesn’t spend a lot of time tweeting, and you tweet 100 times this month, then you shouldn’t be surprised if 100% of your tweets get no reaction.
4. What any of it means. The Sysomos post is chock-full-o-stats. After looking through them, I can’t help but wonder: Yeah, so what?