The biggest hit of the Oscars night turned out to be host Ellen DeGeneres' star-studded selfie which broke all records to be the most re-tweeted tweet in history. In a recent blog post twitter confirmed that tweets about the Oscars were viewed more than 3.3 billion times during a 24 hour period, from Sunday at 5 pm ET until Monday at 5 am ET.
Receiving a whopping 2.4 million retweets in just 24 hours, Ellen's tweet was a preview of how Twitter is experimenting with its television related reach and battling to emerge as the second screen. Wondering how twitter reckoned these figures? The answer is simple- it is Twitter impressions. Twitter has gone beyond its typical style of tweets reporting to figure out “impressions”. In the words of Twitter, impressions are “how many times tweets are displayed to users”.
Twitter unfolded that there were 19.1 million tweets about the Oscars during that window, sent by more than 5 million people and viewed by 37 million people across Twitter.com and Twitter’s mobile and desktop applications.
So what we can figure out is that Twitter impressions are very different to total tweet counts but pretty similar to page views. According to Twitter, impressions are generated when news outlets and others embed the tweets on their website to reach a new and larger audience. So when a news channel inserts Ellen DeGeneres' tweet on their website, all the views that the tweet gets through that website is counted as impressions.
According to Twitter, the mere counting of tweets posted about an event might not be the best indicator of Twitter’s reach. And reach is what matters when it comes to attracting brands and advertisers. So there are impressions now to give a deeper insight on the reach of this social media network.
Let us understand it this way. Contrast to the typical tweet count, what impressions say about the Oscar tweet is that:
- The tweet was seen by 8.1 million people for 26 million times.
- The tweet was embedded on 13,711 web pages and was viewed 6.8 million times by 5 am ET on Monday.
- The two make a combined impressions figure of 32.8 million for Ellen’s tweet.
Ellen's record breaking selfie also turned out to be a big hit on Facebook. Facebook closely rivalled Twitter, with the platform recording 11.3 million people engage in 25.4 million interactions about the show.