Managing a Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram page is a more simplistic piece of implementing a marketing strategy – right? Wrong. Although sending out Tweets and posting on Instagram might be as straightforward as hitting a button and waiting for the likes to roll in, what many companies struggle with is creating content that aligns with the brand’s overall marketing objectives. And, even if your likes are reaching the thousands, are you really reaching your target market? The truth is, branding efforts can go awry somewhere along the line if no one is paying attention, or if a social media strategy isn’t being utilized. Sure, you know what followers and page likes are, but when it comes down to analyzing your social success, it can be hard to tell heads from tails – especially when you might have to adapt to a new vocabulary to understand the elements at play. So, if social media always ends up on the back burner of your brand’s marketing strategy, it’s time to re-work the plan and implement a new one.
- Know Your Audience: Check out your analytics and determine the demographics of your followers. Do they align with the target of your brand? Upon taking a closer look, you may find that you’ve been reaching the wrong people socially, which might make the accomplishment of 100,000 Facebook followers a little less exciting. The number of likes and shares you receive are only beneficial if you are reaching the right people.
- Make it Measurable: A good social media manager will always create a plan that allows for the measurement of success. Don’t get blinded by the sheer number of followers, it may end up limiting the capabilities of your brand on social media. While likes and shares can be beneficial in determining the successful resonation of your messages, it’s not the only variable at play.
- Know Your Metrics: These days, social media may as well come with its own personalized dictionary – we’re talking about the words you might come across on your business account – reach, views and impressions. Get to know these terms and start to leverage them into an effective strategy. Here are some tips to de-coding your analytics:
Reach: If you’re managing a social media account, you’ve seen the term “reach” before. Your numbers even look impressive – but what are the numbers really telling you and how can you leverage that for social success?Followers and non-followers can be exposed to a post in a few different ways. Whether it is on their personal feed, on your page or seen as a result of a share from a friend, the term “reach,” groups all these variables together into one number.
Impressions: Keep in mind that reach is often confused with the term “impressions,” although they are admittedly very similar. Social Sprout uses the explanation, “if five Facebook fans each saw your post twice, the result would be a total of 10 impressions, but only a reach of five.” That’s because impressions are essentially the number of times a post is seen.
- Keep It Simple: Outline your strategy in a way that makes sense to you. Clearly state what you want to accomplish and then give yourself a set of standards. That way, when you go to measure your success a month or so later, it’s clear whether or not you’re on the right path. Most social platforms have analytics built in, so get familiar with them. Have more followers than reach? Find a better time to post. Page views down? Maybe you’re not posting enough.
Now that you’re familiar with the terms, it’s time to listen to what your analytics are telling you, and adapt accordingly.
About the Author: Brenna Vallar brings NYC agency experience back to her hometown of Syracuse as a content developer. While she may have left the Big Apple behind, Brenna’s energetic aura and innovative energy continue to reflect her time spent in the notoriously busy City. With a penchant for copywriting and digital media, she adapts her public relations background and direct marketing specialties to dive deeper into the digital world. Brenna has a mind for business and passion for photography and graphics, which complements her strategic planning skills, aptitude for building client relationships and tendency to invent creative solutions that reflect the constantly evolving web and social media landscape.