If you’re reading this, the odds are pretty good that you have an existing social media campaign that’s already up-and-running. And you probably know how to use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+ to engage with your audience. But, if you’re like many people, you’re probably not getting the results you were hoping for.
If that’s the case, then this post is for you. What follows are several steps you can take to analyze your campaign, make some adjustments and see improvements as a result.
Okay, ready to get started? Here goes:
Step #1: Collect Your Data. It’s impossible to figure out if your social media program is working without collecting all your data and deriving some insights from it. If you’re tracking the basics (e.g., Facebook Likes, Twitter followers, blog comments, etc.), that’s fine, but eventually, you’ll want to start going deeper into your data.
The first thing to do is to visit your Google Analytics page where you can get a great deal of information about the traffic coming into your site. I check Google Analytics about once a week to analyze page views, most popular posts, time-on-site and other important metrics.
You can gather information from a variety of other sources, too. I use HubSpot’s Marketing Grader for a very solid look at my overall performance across many platforms. I use Pingdom.com to keep track of how quickly my site loads. And I use SocialMention to get a quick snapshot of how the 60 Second Marketer brand and my @AskJamieTurner handle are being seen across the internet.
(Side Note: Many of the tools mentioned in this post can be found in 83 Best Social Media and Mobile Marketing Tools for Small- to Mid-Sized Businesses, which is a free e-book we’ve just released.)
Step #2: Derive Insights. One of the biggest mistakes people make is that they collect a lot of data and then don’t derive insights from their data. Information is fine, but insights will grow your business. So, collect all the important data you have about your social media campaign and compile it into one dashboard.
If you’re like many small- to mid-sized businesses, you don’t have the budget to pay for an expensive tool like Wildfire which has several dashboards to help you manage your campaigns and derive insights from the data. For the rest of us, we can use an Excel spreadsheet to track datapoints over time. By setting up a spreadhseet that tracks your data chronologically, you’ll be able to observe patterns and trends that help you understand what’s working and what’s not working.
Alternatively, you can use the dashboards available in MarketMeSuite, SproutSocial or any number of social media management tools. One of the platforms I’m using right now is called Crowdbooster (which is also mentioned in our 83 Tools e-book). Crowdbooster presents their data visually, which helps busy people like me make quick decisions about the information they’re seeing. Because the information can be seen graphically, your brain doesn’t have to translate the data into insights, which provides a level of efficiency I enjoy.
Step #3: Re-Examine Your Goals. One of the things I wrote in How to Make Money with Social Media is that all roads in social media should lead to ROI. After all, what’s the point of running a social media campaign if it’s not going to improve your bottom line?
Most social media campaigns are designed to drive prospects to a landing page where they can be converted into leads. Once they become a lead, they can be nurtured until they become a customer. After they become a customer, you can turn them into a repeat customer.
Why is it so important to turn a customer into a repeat customer? Because, as we mentioned in our 7 Ways to Increase Sales Tomorrow video on our YouTube channel, a two-time customer is more than twice as likely to buy from you again than a one-time customer. So your goal is always to get an existing customer to come back a second time.
Of course, in some cases, instead of using your social media campaign to generate leads, you’ll be using it for customer retention. In other words, you’ll be using it as a customer relationship management tool to reduce customer turn-over. Since it costs 3 times as much to get a new customer as it does to retain an existing one, the math plays out — by using social media as a tool to reduce churn, you’ll ultimately increase the amount of money being put against the bottom line. Revenue towards the bottom line is a good thing.
The main point I’m trying to make here is that a successful social media campaign has very specific goals tied to it. If the goal for your campaign is something fluffy like “brand awareness” or “customer engagement,” then you should drill down into the details with something that’s specific, measurable, action-oriented, results-oriented and timebound.
Here are some examples you can use for inspiration:
- To use Twitter, Facebook and Google+ to drive 10% more leads to our landing pages resulting in a 5% increase in viable leads for our salesforce.
- To use Facebook to monitor and respond to customer complaints quickly in an effort to reduce churn by 15%.
- To grow our following on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest by 20% over the next 12 months in an effort to increase click-throughs on our landing pages by 15%.
Those are just a few examples of some specific, tangible goals for a social media campaign. My key point is this — you won’t have success with your social media campaign until you get more specific about your goals and objectives. When you get specific about your goals and objectives, you set yourself up for success in the future.
That’s all we have time for today. In tomorrow’s post, we’ll continue the dialogue. In the meantime, feel free to add your questions and comments below so I can be sure what I’m sharing with you is as relevant as possible.
UPDATE: Want to read Part 2 of this series? Then click “What to do When Your Social Media Isn’t Working: Part 2”
Jamie Turner is the Founder of the 60 Second Marketer and co-author of “How to Make Money with Social Media” and “Go Mobile.” He is also a popular marketing speaker at events, trade shows and corporations around the globe.