Twitter
According to a Simply Measured 3rd quarter analysis of the Twitter activity of the Interbrand 2014 Top100 Brands, incorporating their study How Top Brand Marketers Use Twitter, 98% of the top brands in the world have a Twitter account. 70% of brands have over 100,000 followers, up from 58% in Q4 2013, while the percentage of brands that Tweet at least once a day has increased from 92% to 94% since Q4 2013.

The Twitter network boasted 230 million monthly active users in November 2013, and a year later that number has grown to 284 million. More than 500 million Tweets are sent each day. Over 80% of Twitter’s active users are on mobile, and 77% of accounts are outside the U.S. 75% of brands sent at least three Tweets per day, says the report, up from 71% in Q4 2013.

Brands active on the network have identified successful tactics and plan their strategies with an increasingly standardized posting cadence, highlighting a more sophisticated and measured approach to the network. While the number of brands interacting with users individually has increased (highlighted by the 9% of brands tweeting 25+ times per day), brands are aware of over-saturation, and the number of companies posting more than 10 brand Tweets per day has decreased.

• 49% of brands tweeted 1-5 times per day, up from 45% in Q4 2013
• Fewer brands posted 6-25 times per day, but the number of brands posting 25+ times per day
(including @replies and Retweets) has increased
• 77% of brands tweeted 1-6 times per day, excluding @replies and Retweets
• Only 4% of brands tweeted 10+ times per day, down from 6% in Q4 2013, excluding @replies and Retweets

Tweets per day
The breakdown of Tweet types has changed in the last year as brands invest more in direct interaction with users. Brands are Tweeting more, and a greater percentage of these Tweets are coming in the form of @replies to individual users, showing   a greater effort by brands to engage and interact with their Twitter audience.

• The Interbrand 100 posted 136,834 Tweets in Q3 2014, up 22% over Q4 2013.
• @Replies accounted for 70% of brand Tweets, up from 61%
• 49% of brands replied to at least one Tweet per day up from 46%
• 90% of brands replied to users at least once during Q3 2014

Users on Twitter are becoming increasingly more willing to engage with branded content, endorsing branded content more than in the past, accounting for the increase in Retweets of brand content. While the number of sent Tweets increased by 22% between Q4 2013 and Q3 2014, the engagement on those Tweets grew even more.

• In Q3 2014, there were 7,266,497 @replies, Retweets, and favorites of brand Tweets (excluding brand-posted Retweets and @replies)
• Engagement with brand Tweets was up 83% over Q4 2013
• The number of Retweets of brand Tweets has increased 89% since Q4 2013
• Favorites account for 59% of engagement with brand Tweets, up from 48% in Q4 2013

Native photos and videos (links that Twitter auto-embeds in Tweets) accounted for the majority of links posted by brands, and saw some of the highest engagement. Visual content is a successful way to occupy more real estate without increasing post volume, says the report. This is why the three most engaging link types are visual mediums. Bit.ly links are the second most used link type on the network, and while engagement is lower than other link types, it doesn’t reflect click volume.

• Photos made up 45% of sent Tweets, but accounted for 51% of all engagement
• Links accounted for 37% of sent Tweets, but were only responsible for 26% of @replies and Retweets

59,870 brand Tweets included links in Q3 2014, up from 47,638 in Q4 2013.

Tumblr.com links saw the highest engagement per Tweet, with 1,522 @replies and Retweets per Tweet, but accounted for only 51 of the sent links. Vine.co links, which display as embedded videos, accounted for 329 brand posts and saw the second highest engagement at 1,194 @replies and Retweets per Tweet.

Brand Tweets
While automotive is the most represented sector on Twitter, with 14 brands actively using Twitter says the report, the four media brands represented drove the most engagement of any industry. Media companies like MTV and Disney drove massive engagement on Twitter due to large followings and smart tactics, but a focused effort like that put forth by restaurant companies on Twitter drove engagement as well.

• Media brands accounted for 8,382,168 engagements during Q3 2014.
This was more than double the engagement driven by the next most active sector, retail
• Restaurant brands engaged on a 1-to-1 basis more than any other industry.
The four brands in that category sent 47,774 @replies during Q3 2014.
This was more than four times as many @replies as any other industry sent during the quarter

As Twitter continues to grow and see record activity, brand marketers are standardizing practices and focusing more attention on engaging with their audience across the network. Several tactics have been contributing to brand success, concludes the report:

• Regular tweeting is key. 75% of brands tweeted at least three times per day
• Brands are interacting more with individual users. @Replies made up 70% of all brand Tweets
• Engagement with brand Tweets was up 83% since Q4 2013
• Photos accounted for 51% of all engagement with brand Tweets
• Tweets with hashtags drive more engagement than Tweets without them

How are you using Twitter to increase business?

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