This post lays out in detail my experiences with Twitter Blue. Using the analytics available to me alongside everything I have experienced, my hope is to put together a balanced report of my findings with a view to help others decide if Twitter blue could be for them. My motivations will be explained ahead along with everything else so let us dive in and see if Twitter Blue is worth it…
For those who aren’t familiar with me, I’m a mutli-genre author where much of my marketing efforts are driven by social media and blogging. I’m active on Twitter everyday and have been for several years. The results over time have been quite good – from reaching 40,000 Followers at the close of 2022 to selling books regularly just from my presence on the platform. To put things into some perspective, back in 2020 I started that year with 3,000 Twitter followers so the numbers kind of speak for themselves in terms of what I figured out to become semi-successful with the tweet machine.
Numerous times has it been mentioned by others that soon enough I’d have a verified Twitter account during my rise to 40k follows so it was on the cards although this was before Twitter blue became what it is today. I’d looked into becoming a verified content creator a few times to simply see that the process was not easy and kind of gate kept. In order to be verified I would need to be mentioned in multiple articles or places of prominence by those already verified. I’m not of the elite persuasion and you won’t be seeing me getting mentioned in vogue anytime soon so it was kind of a door in the face. Then Twitter was taken over. The old verification system was out and a newer easy access one was in.
Having pondered for a few months after Blue launched, I eventually decided to take the plunge after reaching that 40k milestone. My motivations were and still are to simply see if there is any real differences or anything better than just having regular Twitter. This was a business decision for me and a serious one because I have always taken my endeavours seriously which is the first step to serious results. Right now I stand somewhere between writing as a hobby and it soon potentially being more. Reaching more people to sell more books is pinnacle to that.
A huge factor in my decision to sign up for Blue was in my ability to pay for it without actually being out of pocket so to say. Each month I sell enough books to cover the cost of Blue and so with that in mind, I consider this an experiment that kind of pays for itself. As long as I continue to remain active online and on Twitter to the point where I can sell enough books to pay for this subscription, I’ll keep it.
There are those out there who flat out refuse to put money into the pocket of Twitter’s latest owner but to me, I’m above all that opinionated stuff and I don’t even see it that way. It’s okay to have an opinion about whoever or whatever billionaire is in the driving seat but I’m signed up with Blue for productivity based results so my energy remains elsewhere. Basically for this to be financially viable, I need to sell books or get page reads.
As a resident of the UK, Twitter Blue costs £9.60 a month. My monthly book royalties are on average around £50 and as long as those sales don’t slow down, this whole deal will be viable financially. But this isn’t always about the money and there are plenty of other analytical/observational measures to see if this whole thing has been worthwhile.
Analytics Before Blue
Twitter Analytics is something I have a nerdy obsession with and every day I use it to see what needs work on. These numbers include daily organic impressions (blue bar graph) which is my first port of call when looking at analytics. As you can see for this period of December 2022 and before Twitter Blue it ranged from nearly 40,000 down to 7,000 on any given day. The higher end of 40k is really good in terms of reach and if you can reach people organically with a number similar to your follow count or more, you are doing really well. 583.8K total impressions for the month is also great.
(You can find your own Twitter analytics via the browser version)
I also keep track of my engagement rate which was rather erratic but also good. For me this moves quite a lot but anything around 5% engagement is good. All of these numbers are worth keeping an eye on and they are also live which means they move in real time. Link clicks (purple bars) are particularly relevant as they are the rate in which readers visit my blog and those who potentially by my books.
Analytics with Blue
As you can see from this analytics graph of April 2023, the results are a little divisive. The major observation here is the total impressions are lower than December 2022 but with Twitter blue my daily organic impressions did not slip below 10,000 for the entire month. Twitter Blue seems to give a better level of stable consistency in terms of organic reach. (Ignore the grey bars – this amount of tweets but for some reason it didn’t show up for December 2022 – the analytics can be unreliable sometimes…)
The link click’s number below is much higher suggesting Blue supports links a little more as opposed to regular Twitter. The engagement rate average is also higher but day to day it seems the same for the most part.
Conclusion of Analytics
Using the nifty slider for a fun closer comparison shows there isn’t much difference other than the improved tendency of consistent but overall lower numbers with Blue and the improved link click rate. So in conclusion, Twitter Blue seems to offer improvement in these places:
More consistent with organic impressions every day (10,000 or more for me)
Better link click rates
For someone who has spent much time in the author social media trenches, I know that consistency is the key to success sometimes and having consistent numbers for a month will lead to book sales. Link clicks are also vital as it has always been suspected that Twitter seem to reduce visibility with them but having Blue suggests the opposite.
So we have looked at the analytics Twitter provide, but what else can we look at to determine whether Blue is worthwhile.
Follower Count is an obvious and very visible way of tracking Twitter progress and on the day before my Blue subscription began January 14th 2023 my Twitter following was:
My current Twitter Follower Count at the time of writing this post is:
Which means since signing up to Blue and in the time I have been subscribed (just over 5 months) my Follower Count has risen by:
The important driving factor for Blue is book sales for me and so, has Blue helped with sales? Let us look at December 2022’s sales. This was a month without any paid advertising so most sales are driven by Twitter/social media:
16 Sales for a month without any paid advertising is great. And drove around £54 in royalties which would have been more than enough to cover the cost of Blue. Now let us look at a month where I did have Blue:
Divisive results yet again as the number of sales remained the same but the royalties were a little less at £39 which is still enough to cover the cost of Blue but not as great as December 2022.
So using this information we can partially conclude that not much seems to change with Twitter Blue or we can at least see there are no real vast improvements across the board apart from the link clicks and overall consistency in organic views. But as an online content creator, there are still more places to measure and with improved link clicks in mind, let us take a look at my Patreon growth:
For those who do rely on link clicks from Twitter and have content out there, this graphic is promising in that regard and I’m quite proud of it. Finding paying Patrons to sign up is a huge deal for me and the numbers since signing up for Blue have risen. Of course there are cancellations but that is offset by the arrival of new sign-ups. This is kind of a big deal for me.
From my experience with Twitter Blue, the lesser known features are what make it worthwhile. Those who do have that blue tick, seem to be given priority and better visibility when commenting on a popular thread. Quite recently, I simply dropped this GIF on a thread and the numbers speak for themselves…
I wouldn’t have experienced great numbers like this without Blue. 45.5k impressions for a single reply is several days worth of impressions.
The edit a tweet feature is just okay and kind of clunky but also quite useful on occasion.
John Cena follows me also… something I imagine wouldn’t happen without Blue.
Twitter has always been an enigma and I have a feeling no matter who runs it, that’s how they want it to be. My Twitter Blue experience hasn’t been negative and my numbers haven’t decreased noticeably, they also haven’t risen sharply but perhaps just steadily on a consistent basis.
Consistency and priority in tweet threads along with a good number of link clicks are what I seem have gotten out of the service mostly. For someone who relies on finding people to read my content online and buy my books, this has been quite valuable. Right now, enough money is coming in to pay for Blue and so I’m going to keep it for the time being. If I am to keep going with it, I’ll most probably hit 50,000 Twitter followers by December of this year – something I’d consider a worthwhile achievement. If things go really well then I can also expect a few more Patrons also.
Blue has features that aren’t particularly obvious but can help with visibility and ultimately keep the numbers ticking along consistently. To have an average of 10,000 organic impressions daily is just a shy of a 25% of my following, but still great in my eyes. Twitter is busy and noisy so to get that kind of daily number is an achievement. Having Blue feels like I have to try less to reach people and so my focus or worries can be somewhere else like on writing or procrastinating or thinking about procrastinating.
For Twitter to work on any level for anyone, you have to be present on the platform and learn what works for you and your following.
Thank you for reading what I hope will be useful to a fellow Tweeter. You shall find some further resources and reading below.
My journey to over 40,000 Twitter followers is laid out in detail via my Patreon in a series of Twitter Coaching Sessions. There are also several analytical guides much like this one that are exclusive if you sign up. From finding more book reviews to selling and marketing books – you’ll find a stack of content over there that isn’t available anywhere else. Soon I shall also be releasing a new series all about my querying journey.
Of course for a more concise experience, Consistent Creative Content is a book that lays out everything I’ve done to find success.