Who's listening to you now?

Last month we wrote a post on the best times to tweet called Sweet Times for Retweets. Largely these stats were manipulated from USA and UK data gathered about what people are doing on twitter at different times of the day.

We decided to look at the issue of when is the best time to tweet from a slightly different perspective. We researched 20 different NZ based Twitter accounts over a period of time to analyze 'What percentage of your followers are logged in to Twitter at different times of the day/week?'

The Sample

We chose 7 business accounts and 13 personal accounts in New Zealand. The smallest account had 300 followers and the largest 35,000. We tracked their stats over two weeks every two hours to see what percentage of their followers were logged in to twitter at that time.

Wednesday with an Average of 9.39% is the best day to tweet in New Zealand, then Friday 9.16%, then Tuesday 8.5%, then Thursday 8.02%

Peak times per day

Monday 10am

Tuesday 12pm

Wednesday 12pm

Thursday 12pm

Friday 2pm 

Saturday 12pm

Sunday 8pm

Overall Conclusion

From 10am to 4pm Tuesday to Friday 10 to 13 percent of your followers will be logged in, and thus more likely to see your tweets

On average between morning tea and lunch time is the most active time to be on twitter across the week with about 10% of active followers

Posting a Tweet at other times will get seen by fewer people and more likely to get lost in their feed, so that by the time that person is back checking their messages yours has been lost down the list.

Other stats

The minimum percentage of followers online at one time we recorded was 1% and the maximum we recorded was 29% from two accounts, and they weren't the accounts with the most followers


New Zealanders mainly use twitter at work or during office hours. While we only sampled 20 accounts given these accounts are Kiwi brands and individuals we assume a significant percentage of their followers are also New Zealand based.


Given our surprise at the low numbers of followers logged in to twitter at any one time we decided to dig a little deeper into a few accounts to see what else we could find. And we looked at Justin's account as a comparison. 

(click the graph to view in flickr for a bigger size)

For @3newsnzTelecom and The Herald an average of 40% of their followers have not tweeted in the last month. On average over the 2 weeks we were collecting data they had just 5.67% of their followers logged in at any one time. 

For TV3, Telecom and The Herald on average 27% of their followers had tweeted within the last 24 hours. So there are active followers just not always logged in together. So perhaps there is reason here for news feeds especially to reduce the number of posts per update but update more frequently like every hour update with 2 headlines posts. That way you're more likely to expose a greater number of your followers to your content.

Due to the significant number of followers who haven't tweeted for 30 or 90 days the actual number of people you can expect to see your tweets at any one time is greatly reduced.

For any business, understanding these statistics is critical to your social media strategy. As a result of this you may decide to 'manage' your followers and friends lists more actively to ensure a greater percentage of your followers are active and thus more likely to engage, participate or at least be exposed to your content. 


So what's your take on this? Valuable insight or just more stats you don't care about? At the end of the day it's still the conversations that matters the most.