The "value" of a Peter Spiegel retweet in EU policy communications

Brett Kobie

It’s a metric by which Brussels communicators often measure success. Often, it’s the only metric.”

It’s a Peter Spiegel retweet…and everybody wants one.

But why?

Mr Spiegel, who mans the Brussels desk of the Financial Times, has come to be recognised as an influential voice in EU affairs.  As one colleague told me, “He’s the someone who everybody who’s anybody follows. If you’ve got his attention, then you’ve got everybody’s attention.”

Does it really mean you succeeded?

You can’t succeed in communications (or anything in life really) without defining an objective. So if your objective is to get retweeted by Peter Spiegel then yes, I supposed you would have succeeded!

But if like many of us in Brussels, your objective looks more like “reaching micro-audience X to influence niche policy Y” then you’ll likely need to take a step back and assess whether or not that retweet serves your true end goal and not just your ego. It will make a great screenshot to show the boss, but will it actually make the impact you need to get something real done?

The rise of social media has brought with it a veritable megatonne of numbers and vanity metrics for us to overanalyse and compare against our neighbours. Big numbers and big names make us feel good about ourselves, but in a town where we rarely need to reach hundreds of thousands to make a difference on niche policy matters, focusing on the right communications tactics is a must.

All sanctimony aside, I am human and I too wanted a Peter Spiegel retweet to show my friends 

So I went out and got one. I’ve detailed the process below along with the many numbers Twitter spit out at me. What do the numbers mean?  That’s the subject of a longer post or at least an hour-long coffee session…

In the meantime, just let me enjoy my Peter Spiegel retweet! 🙂

(A 90-second read)