More than 30 billion pieces of content are shared on Facebook each month. Every day, 900,000 new blog posts appear on the Internet. Forty-eight hours of YouTube video is uploaded every minute, and 600 tweets are posted each second. But who is listening, becoming inspired and taking action? To raise awareness of your brand or organization, develop relationships with your target audience, influence perceptions and achieve overall social media success, you must embrace the listen-measure-adapt process.
Whether or not you are active in the social media world, it is important that you tune in to hear what people are saying about your brand and industry. Without this knowledge, effective strategic planning is impossible.
Social Mention and Google Alerts are free, easy-to-use tools that provide a good overview of posts, videos, blogs and websites containing specific keywords or phrases. Twitter Search works in a similar way, monitoring conversations on Twitter.
No matter what your goals, reach and engagement are two important areas to examine. You want to know that your information is reaching your target audience and affecting it in some way.
Keep in mind that a larger reach is not necessarily better. Your community may consist of only 300 people, but they all may be the exact people you want to reach to meet your goals. In addition to traffic, look at your audience’s conversations with you and each other; how they are portraying your brand; the extent to which they agree with you and serve as advocates; and whether they are taking action and purchasing your product, attending your event or shifting their views.
The digital world offers a wealth of social media measurement tools. Consider your needs—what are you really trying to find out or measure? From there, you can easily identify the tools that will prove most useful. Some good (and free) tools to try as a start include YouTube Statistics, Facebook Insights and Klout.
Armed with the information you’ve gathered, you can now adapt your social media strategy to maximize success.
Is your audience very opinionated, frequently commenting or starting debates related to your posts? A live Tweet Chat in which they can share their ideas and concerns with your CEO would show them that you value their input. Is your target audience active on competitors’ social networks but silent on yours? Consider what sets you apart or what you can offer that your competitor can’t or hasn’t yet offered, and bring it to your network.
The social media world is rapidly evolving. New networks, tools and trends show up online seemingly every day. As a result, listening, measuring and adapting is not a one-time process; rather, it is a cycle you must embrace to consistently develop successful strategies and content that inspires your audience to take action and speaks to their needs and interests.
To learn more about this process and The Pita Group’s social media measurement boot camp, call 860.293.0157, ext. 10.