The most challenging aspect of social media data is making the connection from the data you have to actionable insights that will move the needle on your marketing results. Use these questions to find the seeds of marketing performance improvement in your social data:
The purpose of your social campaigns should guide you in the type of social data you want to track. It’s important to think this through carefully, BEFORE you launch your social campaign. Do you need to go beyond the basic metrics such as user counts and user sentiment? You need to gather baseline data before your campaign, so that you can compare the changes in data caused once your social campaign launches. You need to identify the metrics that really matter when gauging if your campaign is producing social user reactions or responses. You can also anticipate what you will change if your social campaign is ignored by users.
The first question is: What are your goals for your social marketing?
- Building Awareness
- Building the audience count for your social content
- Increasing the sharing of your social content
- Increasing links and traffic to your main web site
- Countering negative messages from social users who are waging a jihad against your brand
- Monitoring consumer sentiment about existing and new products
- Monitoring consumer needs and problems to guide new product creation
- New product launch
- Building more responsive customer service
What does the data mean and what do the relationships represent? One of the major benefits of real-time social data and search analytics data is that you can rapidly adapt as consumers react to your social messages, products or content.
Think of each social product launch, or attempt to gain social user reactions or new social content calendar as a real time experiment. You can use the iterative social user data points to react to user needs and adapt your operational strategies. The ideal result would be operations practices that respond to the data and to have engagement with the data built into your processes.
Comparing the baseline social metrics data to the changes during your campaign can reveal sometimes surprising insights into what customers really care about. Don’t ignore data that shows that social users priorities are radically different from what you expected. This is exactly why social media is so valuable. The social users’ needs are more important than some predefined expectations. If the answers require dramatic changes to current business practices, how can you use the data to build the business case for your proposed changes? Is there any correlation between your social data insights and trends in your search traffic analytics data?
Use these questions as a framework for building social data that will guide you to actionable marketing insights.