How We Chose the Best Meteorologists In Social Media

TheSocReports considered several measures of social media success in its ranking of the top meteorologists

At least 7,700 meteorologists actively use social media – meaning at minimum they use Twitter or Facebook in their work. We graded each on a mix of the same standards of performance that we use at TheSocReports to guide subscribers on social success. In other words, this wasn’t just an exercise in sorting by follower count, although that matters. The goal was to identify those social media pros who are most effective at using the social platforms to reach a new audience. Data for this analysis was collected during August and September, 2016.

To Be Eligible

  • Must have account on Twitter
  • Must self-identify as a meteorologist in the Twitter bio or otherwise be known as a degreed meteorologist
  • Excluded: Weather teams and institutional accounts

Fan Base

  • Twitter follower count
  • Facebook Page likes count
  • Instagram follower count


  • Lifetime Twitter posts
  • Recent Twitter activity
  • Lifetime Instagram posts


  • Retweet rate

A note about engagement: It’s only roughly correlated with the number of followers. As a rule, the people who made the list are all extremely effective at engaging their audience, regardless whether they have a few thousand or several hundred thousand fans. Shares and retweets remain the strongest signal of great content. To aid in evaluating overall social performance, we factored in the ‘social authority‘ score from in making the first initial cut. Only those meteorologists with a social authority of 50 or higher (approximately 1,000) advanced to be graded on the rest of the measures.

Best practices

  • Replies

The higher the percentage of posts that began with an @-mention the more weight given this metric. Conversation is a crucial part of audience building.

  • Links

The higher the percentage of posts that included a URL the more weight given this metric. Sharing links to related content is associated with the accounts of the most successful content creators. It means they write and/or read a lot of what’s being published online – and are acting as curators for their audience.

  • Straight retweets in timeline

The lower the percentage of retweeted content in a user’s timeline the more weight given this metric. The top meteorologists spend most of their time creating original content or commenting on the content of others – as opposed to sharing the posts of others without commentary. (Quoted tweets were excluded from the retweet analysis.)

Each individual meteorologist was ranked on these criteria, then the sum of those scores determined the makeup of the top 150 influencers (top 2%). The lower the number, the higher the rank. In the case of a tie, preference was given to the person with the highest number of Instagram followers.

Check out the best meteorologists in social media here >

Special thanks to Pratibha Dixith, a graduate student in Computer Science at the University of Illinois-Chicago (UIC), for her lead role in this project.

TheSocReports logoAbout TheSocReports

TheSocReports believes social media isn’t an art. It’s science. Like a meteorologist tracks the weather, we monitor trends and data in social media. TheSocReports analyzes performance and metrics, compares users to their defined competitors, provides tips, education and suggestions based on activity and inspiration. TheSocReports empowers customers through a blend of personal training and data science to help them succeed in social media by seeing what they’re doing and eliminate the risk of a marginal online presence.

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