The Rise of Social Analytics on Mastodon

If you were to ask most people on Mastodon how they would feel about Google Analytics, you might see overwhelming rejection. But when it comes to people measuring their own personal engagement stats, things get more interesting.

Upcoming article: There are eight different personal analytics products for now.

How do you feel about tools that show you stats and metrics about your account?

— Sean Tilley (@deadsuperhero) 2023-07-10T02:08:26.523Z

A fair amount of people on the fediverse tend to view analytics in a negative light, especially when it comes to personal data. Some questions, such as “What does the tool do with my data?” are valid concerns, especially as the network continues to grow more popular.

Among many other things, I run social media accounts for large organizations.
Many of these large organizations are moving to Mastodon.

These organizations require reports; they want to know how their account is performing. Things like new followers, reshares, clicks, that sorta thing.

Is there an but for Mastodon?

Benjamin Jancewicz, Reddit post on /r/Mastodon

On the other hand, such tools can be considered to be important for the network’s growth: they can validate to an organization that their presence in the fediverse is actually reaching people. I found this quote from a write-up by Dan York, who had responded to the thread with a number of thoughtful insights. Why aren’t there more non-Profit organizations, or organizations in general, on Mastodon?

….if the person involved with social media wants to expand into using Mastodon, they need to be able to justify to their donors and board about WHY they are spending their time setting up a Mastodon account, sending out messages, interacting with people, etc…

..The donors and or board will have questions, like “how many people are you reaching?”…”how many people are learning about the organization?”…”shouldn’t you be spending your time on Facebook or Twitter where we can know how many people are seeing our information?”

Dan York

Dan’s write-up and Benjamin’s Reddit post were compelling enough to convince Raphael Stäbler to launch a service called Analytodon. The platform is designed to be connected to a Mastodon account, and collects post metrics as replies, likes, and boosts trickle in.

Analytodon’s landing page.

Setup is easy: you simply sign up, set up a payment plan, and log in with Mastodon to start collecting stats. While the interface is still pretty basic, I found that it did a pretty good job at calling out my most popular posts, and tracking my increase in followers.

Hey, line go up!

The thing is, Analytodon is not the only game in town. In fact, I’ve managed to track down eight competing services. When I pointed this out to Raphael, he seemed pleasantly surprised.

“I was actually only aware of 2 competitors,” he said, “When I did my first research back in December, I couldn’t actually find any competitors. The lack of competition made me question whether there’s a market for that or not. So, there being 8 of them is actually a positive sign to me.”

Enter MastoMetrics

Mastometrics is another personal analytics project that’s been around for a hot minute. Its creator runs the service for free, and relies on donations to keep his server running.

“I was very skeptical that the community would embrace a tool focused on personal analytics, given [that] people applauded Mastodon for not having it in their platform,” said Robert van Hoesel, MastoMetric’s creator. Despite his initial skepticism, his project has met a significant amount of success.

“As a tool in the fediverse, you definitely feel the growth of the network,” van Hoesel added, “With the last Mastodon growth spike, Mastometrics also grew 15% in signups.”

Other Services

Analytodon and MastoMetric are probably the two most visible analytics products developed by members of the community. Other independently developed small-scale solutions include Metricdon and Towncrier, which seem to be executing similar ideas, albeit at a much smaller scope with less polish.

Both of these apps were kind of on the clunky side, and neither company responded to my outreach with any comments on their products. Metricdon’s dashboard sometimes crashes, shows incorrect stats, and also can access my private messages. Towncrier just displays a 500 error when trying to add any Mastodon account.

The Big Guns

For better or worse, these efforts are not restricted to small businesses or hobby projects made by people in the network. Much larger companies have also decided to get in on the action.


Me, futzing with two Brands Town accounts.

Buffer, a giant in the social media marketing and analytics world, announced Mastodon support at the end of January this year. Some friends and I experimented with it on Brands Town, and it’s great. The platform supports multiple Mastodon accounts, scheduled posting, team coordination, analytics, and a posting schedule.

Oh, dear god.

It is also obscenely, prohibitively expensive. For someone paying for just one or two channels, it’s not too awful. For anyone that’s running more than a handful of accounts, though, the price quickly skyrockets. It’s probably fine for businesses and media companies, but doesn’t seem great for non-profits.


Fedica, formerly Tweepsmap, also offers a service that’s pretty similar to Buffer, except they also offer Bluesky support for some reason. Also, there’s a bunch of features like “AI-driven publishing”, ways to see what your followers are talking about, and track who’s stopped following you. Although many of those features are paywalled at the upper boundary of customer plans, it kind of feels like spyware.


Honestly, this seems pretty okay, compared to that last company.

Seenly is a startup based out of Australia that originally acted as a posting and analytics tool for LinkedIn. Their product lineup has expanded to include Facebook and Twitter, and they seem keen to also add Mastodon. Their pricing is also somewhat more humble, where $30 bucks a month gets you all the features.

What Does All This Mean?

It can be hard to predict what might come from an emergent space. It’s entirely possible that some of these efforts and products will fail. Maybe one of the smaller efforts will merge together to form a bigger one. Maybe some companies will shut down due to a struggle to compete with larger services. On the other hand, maybe some of these efforts might really help out non-profits, and give activists greater insights into engaging with a global movement effectively.

The bigger concern I have, if anything, is that these tools may give incentive to influencers and corporate brands to optimize their content engagement. It could lead to an increase in performative interaction, and encourage corporate entities to gobble up data about everything happening in the fediverse. There’s a potential for surveillance capitalism to become more normalized on the network.

I think these tools can be a real benefit in legitimizing the fediverse, but they need to be developed carefully, with concern for user privacy.

Sean Tilley

Sean Tilley has been a part of the federated social web for over 15+ years, starting with his experiences with back in 2008. Sean was involved with the Diaspora project as a Community Manager from 2011 to 2013, and helped the project move to a self-governed model. Since then, Sean has continued to study, discuss, and document the evolution of the space and the new platforms that have risen within it.

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