Simply put, social media matters to your business. It’s where your customers, clients and future prospects are. It’s a place of active engagement, community-based input, content-sharing and collaboration.
Every day that you’re not actively using social media is a day wasted in terms of brand awareness.
An active social media presence involves time and planning. It also requires information and data to ensure you’re getting it right.
Read on as we explain how data can strengthen your social media presence.
The connection between data and social media
Social media is one of Big Data’s most significant sources. CMS Wires reports that much of today’s data (90%) has been collected in the last two years, and that 80% of this comes from “unstructured” sources such as social media.
In other words, if Big Data is the water pouring out of your faucet, then social media is the reservoir that stream comes from.
Speak to just about any marketing professional and you’ll learn that social media is quickly becoming the most time consuming marketing channel. It involves content creation, scheduling, posting, audience engagement in responding to comments and taking the time to discover new networks – it’s a continuous process.
With social media becoming more and more ingrained in everyday life, it’s crucial that companies start looking at their data to streamline their social media tactics. By streamlining how you use social media, you can cut your hours spent on it significantly, while still managing to increase your social media presence. The key to streamlining is data; your data gives you insight into what’s effective so that you can tailor your strategy accordingly.
Using data to analyse behaviour
Data can be frightening. With so much of it, it’s hard to know where to start sometimes. But data doesn’t have to be complicated. When managed well it offers an instant look at customer behaviour, customer satisfaction and how you are viewed in the eyes of the consumer.
It tells you in real-time what’s working and what’s not and as campaigns evolve, marketers can straightaway gage audience reaction. Identifying the audiences sharing both positive and negative sentiment helps segment markets and identify the type of people who are likely to become customers and those who aren’t taken with the campaign.
Where to start
To make the best of both social media and the data you pull from it, you need to be asking a series of questions.
1. Which posts are driving the most value for my business?
To find this out, you’ll want to look at total conversions (goal completions), which can be found in your analytics broken down into the different social networks. This quickly informs you of which social networks are driving the most valuable actions on your website.
This gives you a great look at the behaviour of your audience following a specific post – information such as how long they stay on your site, what pages they read and whether or not the content was good enough to make them return for more.
2. Where does my content perform the best?
Different types of content (tactical blog posts, quizzes, infographics, giveaways etc) perform differently depending on the social network. Using data, you can optimise content creation according to network and effectively distribute the right material to the right people.
3. When is the best time to post?
Looking at data both from your website and from the built-in analytics on your social media pages will give you information as to when your audience is most active. A review of this data will give you insight about what days were most successful for you to post, what times saw an active audience, and when you get the most impressions.
This data is not only crucial in finding the right times in which to post, but can help you answer other questions surrounding the use of hashtags and attention-grabbing content.
4. Who else is sharing my content?
Shares are one of the best things you can ask from your social media audience. Essentially, a share is a personal recommendation of your brand. Keeping tabs on these shares puts you in front of potential new customers while helping you to engage your current followers. If you’re using influencers to promote your content, this analysis will tell you if it’s worth the cost.
5. Where is my audience coming from?
Data can be used to get a global perspective of the reach of your brand. This assists in the promotion of your brand on a broader scale, to create an impact in other countries that may be untapped business opportunities. Knowing where your audience comes from also allows you to customise your campaigns to suit the culture and tradition of your audience.
No social strategy should ignore data
The key to boosting your social media marketing lies in your data and analytics – through gaining insight into what’s effective and what’s not, you can tailor your social media strategy appropriately to ensure success for your business.