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Day of the week to tweet: a randomised controlled trial

Jayaram, Mahesh; Adams, Clive E.; Friedel, Johannes S.; Mcclenaghan, Eimear; Montgomery, Alan A.; Välimäki, Maritta; Schmidt, Lena; Xia, Jun; Zhao, Sai

Day of the week to tweet: a randomised controlled trial Thumbnail


Mahesh Jayaram

Clive E. Adams

Johannes S. Friedel

Eimear Mcclenaghan

Director Nottingham Clinical Trials Unit

Maritta Välimäki

Lena Schmidt

Jun Xia

Sai Zhao


Objective: To assess the effects of using health social media on different days of the working week on web activity.
Design: Individually randomised controlled parallel group superiority trial.
Setting: Twitter and Weibo.
Participants: 194 Cochrane Schizophrenia Group full reviews with an abstract and plain language summary web page. There were no human participants.
Interventions: Three randomly ordered slightly different messages (maximum of 140 characters), each containing a short URL to the freely accessible summary page, were sent on specific times on a single day. Each of these messages sent on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday was compared with the one sent on Monday.
Outcome: The primary outcome was visits to the relevant Cochrane summary web page at 1 week. Secondary outcomes were other metrics of web activity at 1 week.
Results: There was no evidence that disseminating microblogs on different days of the working week resulted in any differences in target website activity as measured by Google Analytics (n=194, all page views, adjusted ratios of geometric means 0.86 (95% CI 0.63 to 1.18), 0.88 (95% CI 0.64 to 1.21), 0.88 (95% CI 0.65 to 1.21), 0.91 (95% CI 0.66 to 1.24) for Tuesday–Friday, respectively, overall p=0.89). There were consistent findings for all outcomes. However, activity on the review site substantially increased compared with weeks preceding the intervention.
Conclusion: There are no clear differences in the effect when 1 weekday is compared with another, but our study suggests that using microblogging social media such as Twitter and Weibo do increase information-seeking behaviour on health. Tweet any day but do Tweet.


Jayaram, M., Adams, C. E., Friedel, J. S., Mcclenaghan, E., Montgomery, A. A., Välimäki, M., …Zhao, S. (2019). Day of the week to tweet: a randomised controlled trial. BMJ Open, 9(4), Article e025380.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 12, 2019
Online Publication Date Apr 4, 2019
Publication Date Apr 4, 2019
Deposit Date Mar 28, 2019
Publicly Available Date Mar 28, 2019
Journal BMJ Open
Electronic ISSN 2044-6055
Publisher BMJ Publishing Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 9
Issue 4
Article Number e025380
Keywords General Medicine
Public URL
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