For too many folks the answer is:
I don’t know
And, that’s a problem. Without good social media analytics and someone who knows how to interpret them, you just keep doing stuff and HOPE you’re getting some results.
What specific social media strategies are working? Which social networks work best? What types of content produce the best results on each social network? What time works best for posting on different social networks?
Who is reading your blog? Commenting on your Facebook posts? ReTweeting your Tweets?
How do you bring more traffic to your website?
Are you optimizing your social media strategy?
What’s the ROI of your social media strategy?
And, if you look at this infographic, you’ll see that more than half of all businesses can’t answer these questions.
1. Determine appropriate metrics –
What are your KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)? In other words, what variables translate into ROI (Return on Investment) for the firm?
Of course the problem with marketing is that often it’s hard to translate social media marketing into tangible results — specifically sales. But, combining social media analytics with market research, you can draw a line from social media results to market performance.
Another way of looking at KPIs is that they should fit with the goals of the firm. And, these goals should be consistent with market performance, such as customer satisfaction improvements.
KPIs from your website or blog might include metrics such as #visitors, time on site, bounce rate, and views for specific content. KPIs from your Facebook page may be measures of engagement. Other KPIs might reflect your actions in social media, such as the average time between a comment on your Facebook page and your response.
2. Assess performance and optimize
Assessing performance is actually a multi-part activity. First, you have to set up your social media strategy so it’s trackable. That means creating landing pages, setting up codes within your site, create filters so you can see what visitors are doing using Google Analytics and Facebook Insights for Business. On Twitter, you can use hashtags # to determine whether your social media strategy is working.
Without these coding tactics, it’s more difficult to use these tools to see what’s working.
You’ll want to see how your brand is doing on social networks you don’t own. And, you won’t have analytics for these sites. That’s where tools like Radian6, Ubervu, and my personal favorite, Hootsuite Pro (get a FREE 30 trial of Hootsuite Pro). come in. They track brand mentions across the internet — including on social media sites and websites. Free tools such as Google Alerts and Social Mention can also help see what’s being said about your brand, although I don’t think these capture as much as the paid tools. I use Google Alerts to supplement Hootsuite because, why not?
4. Interpret metrics
Social media analytics goes beyond just collecting the data, you have to interpret it! So, once you have the data, use it to determine what’s working and how to optimize your social media strategy.
- What do the metrics mean in terms of market performance variables such as satisfaction, loyalty, and endorsements?
- What kind of WOM (word of mouth) comes from your social media marketing efforts? Not only how many folks are talking about your brand, but what are they saying about it.
- How well are you doing connecting with your target market?
What do your social media analytics say about your target audience?
Are you giving them what they want?
Is there something else your target audience needs?
How does your target audience live their lives?
How does your target audience respond to various types of content?
We’re here to help. Hausman and Associates, the publisher of Hausman Marketing Letter, uses state of the art social media analytics and market research to optimize market performance on your brand online. We’re happy to provide a proposal showing just how affordable a powerful social media policy can be.
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