Being present in Social Media is no longer an option for brands. No longer acceptable, either. For brands to perform in this digitally immediate day and age, they need to be focused, engaged and pro-active in social media. Too often, though, a brands success in social media is being measured by the wrong metrics. Metrics that appear useful on the surface but fail to deliver any true, actionable value to the brand.
Metrics that appear useful on the surface but fail to deliver any true, actionable value to the brand.
I recently shared a piece of content about ‘Getting High on Google’ and was excited to see the interaction received. I was in a meeting when it posted to Twitter but checked roughly two hours later thinking it would have had a few favorites and retweets. It had 1 favorite. I was in a rush when I looked initially but it stuck in my mind so I investigated further that evening.
When I dug a bit deeper into the social analytics of the tweet, I found the post had 12 times more clicks than any of my tweets from the past month. The post was re-shared a few times and it all made sense.
Don’t judge your Twitter Metrics by their cover.
Twitter engagement has changed drastically. A product of a changing internet user and the number of users on the platform. There are currently 316 Million Active Users on Twitter. It’s also a product of shear volume of content being published. They stopped publicly counting in 2013 at 500 million tweets sent per day. Heavy numbers.
With an average of 5,787 tweets per second, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed getting started.
Twitter is still one of the most actionable social channels, though. A mandatory compliment to your branding and content marketing strategy. The opportunity to broadcast your brands content to an active audience of 316 Million should be enough to convince your Marketing Director to put some energy into the channel. Gauging your success on the right Twitter Metrics will allow you to prove it’s worth.
With the shift in engagement we’ve seen it’s no easy task to get your Twitter content working. A recent study illustrated the number of people actually viewing their timelines on the app has fallen drastically. The timeline moves so quickly people are now sticking to 1-to-1 engagements, search based content and list curation for interest focused engagements.
Twitter has been working hard to make sure you can provide actionable reporting on your social efforts within it’s platform. They’ve continued to build out and improve their analytics features. Changed the focus metrics a few times and introduced new content features to increase content performance. With these features and analytics there can be some confusion on how to properly measure your brands content performance.
Here’s a quick breakdown of which social metrics to look at and what value each metric brings to the table.
Favorites are cool.
When people favorite your tweets, it means they noticed you and likely want you to notice them as well. Favorites are a good thing. They do play a role in your engagement score. They’re not the best, though. People who’ve been on Twitter a while play a game. It involves searching for hashtags relevant to their most recent tweets and favoriting every tweet that shows up in the search results. They do this so people notice them and hopefully follow them. It’s one of the oldest growth hacks on the platform.
Retweets are solid.
When someone retweets your content, give yourself a firm high five. Retweets give your content exposure to a new audience. The size of which is determined by the retweeters follower count. They bring awareness to your brand and provide opportunity for account growth. A retweet will increase your contents potential reach and provides tons of opportunity. When you see a retweet come through it’s always good to acknowledge them with a favorite or a comment or a follow if their feed looks good.
Comments are awesome.
When people comment on your content, stop what you’re doing and get involved. This is what Twitter is really about. Realtime conversation. People commenting on your content expect quick responses, especially if you’re a brand. Responding in the correct brand voice gives you an opportunity to create a lasting impression, potentially creating a brand advocate out of the person on the other end. Conversing also illustrates you’re engaged in the community and not just some robot-monkey-machine looking to make a sale. Social Media is about being social. Jump at every opportunity you’re given.
Clicks are the new black.
When you’re publishing content on the web and pushing it through social media, clicks are your real success metric. This doesn’t apply to all tweets since not all tweets do or should include links. Getting people to click on your social content means you’ve ultimately done it right. Your headline worked. Your supporting graphics or video worked. And you’ve gotten peoples attention. They are now actionable prospects for your business. Treat them well, though. People don’t want to feel like numbers or victims and their attention spans are increasingly short. This is not necessarily the time to start shoveling flashing signs and blinking “Click Here!!” banners at them. This is the starting point to your digital relationship. Nurture it carefully.
**Note – clicks are measured in most social analytic applications as a user click on any part of your tweet, not always a link click
Pro Tip: Use UTM Paramaters on your Tweet Links to accurately track traffic on a per campaign basis.
Clicks provide an opportunity to introduce new channels to your digital marketing efforts. Content validation… retargeting… outbound social sharing… email subscription… even conversion. Whatever that may be for your brand. The key is to provide real value through your content once you get people to it. And when you do, make sure you have your tools in place to assist your new friend through your sales funnel.
If you’re looking to dig a bit deeper into your social analytics, check the links below for a more involved view or hit us up for some guidance. We’re obsessed with results and always happy to help get you on your way.
SumAll Provides Analytics, Reports, Insights and more. With beautiful, presentation-ready reports shipped to your inbox weekly, your boss will be up to speed in minutes while you can focus on cranking out your next post.
HubSpot is an inbound marketing and sales platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers. Their platform does an amazing job with social posting, reporting, and analytics.
Buffer’s main function is to schedule and post all of your social content. They do an amazing job at it. Buffer has some great analytics and reporting features with their free and pro versions of their service.
As mentioned above, adding UTM parameters to your social links allows you to measure campaign success. Google Analytics is where you’ll do all your digging when UTM parameters are set. Buffer and Hubspot add the UTM parameters for you, one of our favorite features for quickly tracking general and campaign specific social initiatives.
Hope this post helps you get on your way to more actionable insights from your Twitter Metrics. If you have any questions, ask away in the comments below!