The Labor MLC for the Agricultural Region is one of the most active tweeters in Parliament, averaging 6.1 tweets a day — and twice as often on Sundays.
Why Sunday? It’s not clear, but nearly a third of the tweets by Mr West are posted on that one day, with evenings his peak time for engagement. If you add in his propensity to also tweet late on a Saturday evening, it’s a picture of a pretty busy sitting politician catching up when he gets a rare moment.
Mr West started the campaign with just over 1000 Twitter followers and has built his following by about 10 per cent. That’s not bad but his numbers have plateaued recently, perhaps due to a pretty low level of engagement.
Almost all his tweets are reshared content; out of more than 260 tweets, only 15 involved replying to other Twitter users.
Looking at a full month, Mr West’s message on the death of friend and colleague Kim Chance was the tweet most shared. He also links in Labor’s Lara Dalton, running for the Lower House seat of Geraldron, and got into a spat with the Nationals over their proposed mining tax:
— Darren West (@DarrenWestMLC) February 10, 2017
It’s a pretty good effort (and better than any other sitting candidate other than the Premier for sheer volume). But Mr West could do well to vary his content. Text is good, but a picture is worth a 1000 words.
As the snapshot of one tweeter above shows, the data you can glean about your social media activity is incredible. There are patterns you might not be aware of when posting videos of your cat. But data without action is just a bunch of numbers. It should be used to help you act more strategically, engaging at the right times, with the right followers, in the right format.
We know, for example, that Wednesday is the best time for businesses to tweet on Twitter. It’s also the day that gets the highest click-through rates.
Between 5pm and 6pm is a peak Twitter reading time (provided your audience isn’t trying to drive home). If you really want fans, exploit the witching hours for what has been called the Late Night Infomercial Effect. You can capture the eyeballs of night owls with nothing else to do but retweet what crosses their screens.
Lastly – why add should Mr West add a pic? They ensure your posts have a much higher engagement rate. Buffer studies show an 18 per cent increase in clicks, 89 per cent increase in favourites and 150 per cent increase in retweets.