For a majority of us, social networking sites take up a large chunk of our time. Even if you’re not a professional social media marketer, you are likely to be plugged into Facebook every single day. Some of us even check for Facebook updates more often than our mail. You’ve been doing this for years now and you have a hang of things. Even your Mom is on Facebook now! With so many people spending so much time online, reaching out to them should be pretty simple and straight forward right?
Then why do businesses – small and large alike, have such a hard time drawing audiences and keeping them engaged?
You make your page, you post your promotions, you even offer incentives in a desperate move to attract fans and likes; but even on your best day, all you have is a mediocre response!
So what’s going wrong?
There’s a long list of reasons why your communities aren’t drawing the devout and committed fan base they probably deserve. And most of these answers lie in your insights.
Without analytics, you’re simply shooting in the dark. Don’t hope. Be certain!
Just as a business would do in traditional media marketing, you need to analyze your ROI. You need to know where your audiences come from? What interests them? What draws them to your page? What makes them stay, or leave?
While basic analytics like Facebook insights are available directly on social platforms, the best ways to measure ROI in social media is to use analytical and management software or tools. These provide great insights into your activities and which types of content work and which don’t.
The fundamental idea behind analytics is to gain insight into what you’re doing right and what not. This can be done simply using a three pronged approach. In my opinion, simply follow the 3 Ms of social media analytics.
The more you know about your audiences, the better you can serve them. Besides general stats like the numbers of followers and likes; numbers will throw light on content performance, peak productivity times, most frequent/active users etc.
Get real-time updates and details of active users and also specifics such as at what time of day are your users most active and the most active days of the week and so on to help you schedule your content delivery for better effectiveness. The more parameters you measure the better certainty you have in decision making.
There are several tools available to track and analyse your social presence. Some of the best free measuring tools to quantify your impact and influence include Twitalyzer, HowSociable and Social Mention
Monitor what types of content do best and when. Depending on your definition of success rates, it’s not only about tracking the surge in followers and likes, it’s also about checking the positive things your audience is saying about you, their most frequent concerns, comments and questions they ask, and whether these concerns are being addressed. You need to track trends over a period of time, for a more robust understanding of your page dynamics.
One of the best free monitoring tools is Hootsuite, which provides a dashboard to manage and monitor multiple social networks at once. Besides this, TweetReach and SocialPointer are also great to track and respond to online activity in real time.
Measurement and monitoring will guide you towards a more vivid understanding of your page and the audiences it beings in. Once you know what they want all you need to do is deliver. Rely on the data to guide you towards engineering a strategy that is customized to deliver the best possible offering to your audience.
The world of social media is overwhelmingly powerful. It gives businesses local access to global opportunities. There are billions of active users on social media around the globe waiting to be reached out to and large opportunities waiting to be seized. Analytics is that indispensible necessity that will help you to reach out to them.
What analytics do you use to make your digital marketing strategy more effective? Which free or paid tools have given you worthwhile results?
Share your thoughts in insights in the comments!