With customers choosing the online medium to research and purchase products, a viable social media presence is on top of the to-do list for marketers.
Consider this: There were 490 million unique YouTube users per month in 2012, Facebook reported 1.2 billion users worldwide and the average amount of tweets per day adds up to 190 million.
If marketers don't approach social media right, they’re just annoying people. As long as marketers think that tracking social media ROI is an impossible task, they’re going nowhere. But what are the metrics that assure social media success?
Key Social Media Metrics to Watch
Strictly from a business perspective, social media should help generate leads, spread brand awareness, and help maintain and improve brand reputation. However, with so many numbers to track, how do you figure out which are worth tracking for your product or service? The motto “measure what matters” could not be more valid when it comes to social media.
Brands that have been busy adopting social media to drive business change often use the Social Media Effectiveness Index (SEI) developed by Blueocean Market Intelligence to evaluate social media effectiveness. The Index identifies that metrics like Share of Voice, Influencers and Advocates, Engagement Rate, Touch Rate and Net Sentiment have a strong impact on social media effectiveness. The index captures conversations on social networks and in online communities, and demonstrates how companies can provide a higher level of customer engagement on social/digital channels. Additionally, it measures interactions between businesses and customers in social media, including how Facebook and Twitter influence customer engagement and purchase behavior.
Social Media is in the Marketing Mix – What are the Analytics Tools for Marketers?
With social media turning into a main focus for marketing for businesses, monitoring activity has assumed importance, too. Some of the free social media analytics tools like Facebook Insights, Minilytics, Tweetstats, Social Mention, Marketing grader etc. are helping companies monitor, track and analyze social media presence. For starters, Google Analytics provides an endless amount of data to analyze, including options to monitor traffic sources, visits, referring sites, types of visitors, etc. Salesforce.com Marketing Cloud is one of the best social CRM available (my personal favorite). It is very effective in turning millions of social conversations into dynamic engagements that strengthen customer relationships.
Issues With Social Media Analytics
Unreliable data, inaccurate sentiment analysis, and the amount of time spent to understand the tool before using it – these are just few of the hurdles a marketer needs to overcome with these tools. Most analytics tools produce data rather than insights, thus the question of how to put analytics data to use poses a huge problem. Complex reporting processes, lack of sophisticated metrics or models that support decision making are formidable barriers to improving the quality of analytics data that can be used in making strategic decisions.
Listen and Develop Your Social Media Content
Analytics plays a vital role in Social Media message development. And effective message development and communication is based on what you are trying to accomplish, who your audience is and why they would read your message. Create a social media analytics dashboard and use the data to understand your audience interests, behavior, trends and top influencers on your channels. These insights will help you to develop an effective content and audience engagement strategy, it won’t take you long to build a community that not just actively participates on your social media platforms, but one that will spread your message each and every day.
image: bottom line/shutterstock