Educators and Engagement: The Impact of Hashtags and Tweet Types

By Megan M. Tyson


As the world moves more and more online, so must the way in which everyone communicates professionally and personally. Many jobs that were once considered office jobs have moved online with their sole purpose being to communicate, advertise, and promote digitally. Like the rest of the world, traditional paper and pencil education was already integrating online tools and programs into their curriculums. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a complete switch to online was made over the span of a few hours. The demand for online educational tools that were both effective and user friendly for teachers and students was instant. These tools that are now consistently used in the classroom also have a social media presence; they are able to update their users about new features, ask for feedback, and overall interact with the people who use their tools daily.

Because of this online switch, examining how hashtags and types of tweets impact interaction with educational tools/companies’ Twitter accounts is relevant to the current, and changing, educational environment. This article examines the goals of hashtag impact, tweet type impact, and what combination of these two results in the most engagement.

In considering this topic, professional writing is defined as “any form of writing produced for a professional reason that influences and engages its audience.” Key points of this definition are audience, purpose, and reason. These key points are reflective of Bitzer’s (1968) summary of audience and exigence to create a rhetorical situation. Through the use of Twitter (now X), these educational tools are able to accomplish this. Twitter also allows for analysis of professional writing because each tweet can be specific in who it is trying to reach. There are differences in how tweets are written, and each tweet’s purpose can change, providing avenues of analysis to be performed all in one centrally located place.


This project follows the three Twitter accounts of Edpuzzle (@edpuzzle), Quizizz (@quizizz), and Kahoot! (@kahoot). These three educational tools were chosen because they are ones that are popular among most K-12 teachers. Edpuzzle is a tool that allows teachers to embed questions right into videos, from sources such as YouTube, that must be answered before moving ahead and can also double as a self-paced learning tool (Edpuzzle). Quizizz is a gamified tool that can be used for both assessment and learning through live and asynchronous means (Quizizz). Kahoot! is typically used as a review tool in a classroom setting also in a gamified manner (Kahoot!). These three are popular tools because each one provides relevant feedback to teachers who can assist with lesson planning, reteaching, assessment, and more.

To these three accounts, professional writing consists of showing new features and updates to their tools, asking for feedback, partnering with other organizations, and advertising their own product’s abilities. All of these accounts do this through a “personally professional” type of writing, which is a delicate balance between showing a personal identity in a professional setting (Buck, 2017). Through this, users are more likely to engage and interact because there is a level of comfort behind the communication. As the main target audience, most teachers appreciate being included in conversations instead of feeling like they are being spoken down to. Therefore, these accounts can be successful with social media engagement by creating a personally professional identity online.

Educational tool companies who have an online presence reinforce the fact that they are promoting online tools. If their product is an online tool, they should also have an online way to connect with their users. Through Twitter, these educational tools are able to quickly connect on a platform that educators are already familiar with and are using for professional development, collaboration, and where they have already created professional learning networks (PLN). Having an account and online identity through Twitter keeps these tools in conversation and relevant to educators.


The main following of each of these pages are educators. Followers are expected to know how to use the company’s tools because one of the types of tweets that can be seen on these pages discusses how to implement the tools, new features, and/or what lessons other educators have been assigning with the tools. Educators like to follow the Twitter accounts of these tools so they are able to stay up to date on their offerings and promotions. It also creates a place for organized feedback and collaboration between the company and other educators for one specific tool and its use.

Furthermore, these accounts specifically target educators as their question-type tweets or ones that require interaction (tagging someone, poll, reply with a gif, Twitter chat), are all about education, school, teaching, and/or relatable topics. For example, on May 13, 2022, Kahoot! tweeted “Teachers: how many days do you have left in your school year?” (Kahoot!). From the data analyzed, this was the most popular tweet of any of the three accounts followed with 24 retweets, 142 likes, and 304 replies. That tweet, like many others, is blatantly directed toward educators.

Research Question

For the purpose of this study, the guiding research question is: How do hashtags and tweet types impact interaction with educational tools/companies’ Twitter accounts? This study looks at the use of hashtags as well as the type of tweet (question/response, new tool feature, info, swag promotion, Twitter chat, and award) to determine what tweets elicit the most engagement.


Data was collected on July 27, 2022 from logging into the Twitter app and following @edpuzzle, @quizizz, and @kahoot by visiting each of their respective pages. Initially, data was going to be collected for the one-week period of May 15, 2022 – May 21, 2022. This week was chosen because it falls after Teacher Appreciation Week, but before the end of the school year. This allowed for data to be more genuine and not skewed by Teacher Appreciation Week or the summer months when K-12 school is not in session. However, after an initial data collection, there was little distinction among any of the three accounts to determine any type of pattern. The decision was made to look at a one-week period both before and after the initial week. That being said, depending on the type of education followers work in can still have influence on this data. Any educator working at the college level would most likely be finished with or just finishing their school year near the beginning of May. Additionally, West Coast K-12 schools would be finishing or already finished while East Coast schools are just beginning their finals weeks. In this sense, general activity could be down or this data could be mostly reliant on East Coast K-12 teachers finishing out their school year.

Data was collected by finding each original tweet from each account starting with Edpuzzle, then Quizizz, and finishing with Kahoot!. Tweet data was collected by starting with the initial week of May 15, 2022 – 21, 2022, then adding the weeks of May 8, 2022 – May 14, 2022 and May 22, 2022 – May 28, 2022.

The data collection process was completed by finding the first tweet of the respective date range. Each original tweet was documented by date on a Google Sheet to be able to find the total number of tweets during this three-week period. Each tweet was individually read to document the number of likes, replies, and retweets. Each tweet was also read to document the number of hashtags, photos/images, video, gifs, links, and/or poll used. Each tweet was read a third time to document what kind of tweet it was (question/response, new tool feature, info, swag promotion, Twitter chat, and/or award). For every item each individual tweet contained as listed previously, the corresponding number was put in an appropriately labeled column on a Google Sheet so that totals could be calculated for each day, week, and total at the bottom of the Sheet. First there was one Google Sheet per Twitter account. Then all data was merged in a separate Sheet in order to make larger comparisons.

Each of these data points were collected in order to answer the research question of how do hashtags and tweet types impact interaction with educational tools/companies’ Twitter accounts? Through the collected data, it can be determined whether or not hashtags make a difference in engagement. It can also be determined whether or not the addition of photos/images, video, gifs, links, and/or poll make an impact on engagement. Finally, it can be determined from this data if the type of tweet, question/response, new tool feature, info, swag promotion, Twitter chat, and/or awards, also makes an impact on engagement. All of these data points lead to an analysis on interaction that promotes the most engagement by users.

Data and Analysis 

The results from the data collected gave an interesting answer to the research question of how do hashtags and tweet types impact interaction with educational tools/companies’ Twitter accounts? In the three-week span across all three accounts followed, there were 109 total original tweets. Of those 109 tweets, Edpuzzle accounted for 17 tweets (16%), Quizizz accounted for 36 tweets (33%), and Kahoot! accounted for the remaining 56 tweets (51%). The first piece from the research question examined was the types of tweets these accounts produced.

Figure 1 shows that information tweets were the majority of tweets sent by the three accounts.

Pie chart showing tweet types

It was expected for this type of tweet to be high on the list because part of these accounts’ purpose for tweeting is to keep their followers informed. The next highest type of tweet were question tweets. Tweets in this category asked questions or directly asked for interaction from followers. Again, it makes sense that this type is higher on the list because it directly wants interaction from followers. Gaining interaction keeps users following. For example, each time these three companies were tweeted about this project, each of the accounts interacted in some fashion. Interaction keeps both sides of the party happy.

The third highest type of tweet in Figure 1 was about new features and updates made to the online tools people should look forward to using. The remaining types of tweets did not have much impact in terms of interaction. The only outlier in the remaining group was a tweet paying respect to the victims of the Uvalde shooting, which gained 46 likes.

The next piece of data to examine was the type of tweet in comparison to the number of likes and replies to gauge interaction. Figure 2, below, shows that even though the question tweet type was only 28.4% of the tweets from the data collection, this type overwhelmingly out-performed every other type of tweet in both likes and replies. In terms of likes, info tweets had 486 likes and 221 responses while question tweets had 706 likes and 818 responses. This is what would naturally happen in terms of interaction: a question elicits a response whereas information is just accepted.

Bar graph showing Tweet Types v. Likes & Replies

The third piece of data to examine is the usage of hashtags and interaction. This data piece is interesting because at first glance, the tweets with 0 hashtags completely out performed the tweets with 1 or even 2 hashtags. However, when looking deeper into the cause, all but 4 of the question type tweets fell into the 0 hashtag category. As noted above, even though question type tweets were only 28.4% of the total tweets, those types make up for it in interaction. As shown in Figure 3 below, the 78 tweets with 0 hashtags had 1,329 likes and 997 replies, the 26 tweets with 1 hashtag had 212 likes and 103 replies, and the 5 tweets with 2 hashtags had 74 likes and 37 replies. This finding is contradictory with previous readings where the use of hashtags increased interaction without having to be a follower (Mina, 2017; Dadas, 2017). In this case, it was the followers interacting with 0 hashtag tweets that boosted interaction.

Bar graph showing the differences between Hashtags v. Likes & Replies

In looking at the overall data, other than the question type tweets, the findings have a varying range of interaction. Tweets that are relevant to what is happening in the world gain attention while tweets about the product the account is promoting gain very little interaction. From this data, it can be argued that the type of tweet impacts engagement more so than hashtags when it comes to how educational tool company accounts function. Most teachers, when asked, like to talk about teaching—what they are doing in their classrooms, or collaboration with colleagues. Because of this, when it comes to professional writing, it is very clear that if educational tool companies want higher engagement, they need to engage their followers in content they already know and are comfortable with.

Data from this study aligns with the previously mentioned definition of professional writing in that these tweets are created for professional reasons to engage and influence their audience to talk about and use their online tools. If these three accounts are tweeting questions about their own tools, they are not only engaging their audience, but also having other people promote their tools for them.

For example, on May 14, 2022, Quizizz tweeted “Team Quizizz is already hard at work prepping brand new Back-To-School activities, and we’d love to spotlight items created by YOU! DM us or drop a link below to your best BTS Quiz or Lesson to possibly be featured on our site this fall!” (Quizizz). While it is unclear how many direct messages came from this tweet, it was one of the highest engaging tweets from Quizizz for this data collection. Knowing this “formula” for public educational tool company accounts matters in terms of keeping client engagement high and users continuing the use of their products.


This analysis shows the importance of educational tool companies staying engaged with their followers and users. It is imperative for them to keep these educators at the forefront of their professional writing, especially on Twitter. The highest form of engagement comes from these accounts asking questions of their followers. This is a process their audience (educators) are comfortable with in the classroom already, so they are very likely to engage online because they are asked about something they are passionate about. These companies need users to keep their product relevant and useful to those in the classroom, and their tool users are the ones who follow them.

Furthermore, it is very important for these companies to keep the “personally professional” identity on their accounts to include educators in the discussion instead of speaking at them. Teachers already face a lot of stereotypes, so when they are included in the conversation, they are more likely to engage and continue to engage. Teachers like feeling heard, so when their ideas are shared and featured, they remain engaged and more likely to continue to use that specific account’s tool.

Recommendations for Educational Tool Companies

  • Engage with the people who follow and engage with you.
  • Celebrate followers for innovative and creative ways of using your tool(s).
  • Hold discussions and conversations with your followers instead of speaking at them.
  • Make your followers feel heard.


Bitzer, L. F. (1968). The Rhetorical Situation. Philosophy & Rhetoric, 1(1), 1–14.

Buck, A. (2017). Chapter 9. Grad School 2.0: Performing Professionalism on Social Media. Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies, 161–178.

Dadas, C. (2017). Chapter 1. Hashtag Activism: The Promise and Risk of “Attention”. Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies, 17–36. 10.37514/ per-b.2017.0063.2.01

Edpuzzle. Edpuzzle. (n.d.). Retrieved July 29, 2022, from

Kahoot!. [@Kahoot]. (2022, May 13). Teachers: how many days do you have left in your school year? [Tweet]. Twitter.

Kahoot! Kahoot! (n.d.). Retrieved July 29, 2022, from

Mina, L. W. (2017). Chapter 14. Social Media in the FYC class: The New Digital Divide. Social Writing/Social Media: Publics, Presentations, and Pedagogies, 263–282. 10.37514/per-b.2017.0063.2.14

Quizizz. [@quizizz]. (2022, May 14). Team Quizizz is already hard at work prepping brand new Back-To-School activities, and we’d love to spotlight items created by YOU! [Tweet]. Twitter.

Quizizz. Quizizz. (n.d.). Retrieved July 29, 2022, from

Megan M. Tyson is a graduate student in the Master of Arts in English program.