by Briana Campbell (@MsMatchGirl)
Everyone is talking about social media metrics. What to measure, how to measure, when to measure… And what tools are the best for collecting this data.
While I’ll approach those questions in subsequent posts, I thought I’d take a moment to share a couple of recent changes to two measurement tools most of you are already using – Facebook Insights and Google Analytics – that you may have missed.
Facebook, often stingy with the data they’ll let a page owner view, has rolled out a new addition to their insights and it’s pretty cool. The new “People Are Talking About Feature” lets not only the page administrator see the number of people who are “talking” about the page/brand, but the person looking at the page as well. And while I’m not sure how I feel about that quite yet, and while we all know that there is a lot more to measure than just the like, seeing how many people are talking about you lets the marketer set the bar for more movement on the page.
When the page administrator clicks that insights tab, they can see further data in the “People Are Talking About” section of their page’s insights. This, I love. You see the demographics of who is talking about your page – including gender and age (Zemoga’s talked about mostly by men aged 25 to 34, it seems!), the countries they’re coming at you from and the language they’re viewing the page in.
I can also view two graphs, the unique people who have mentioned my page and, beyond that, the viral reach – the number of their friends who have viewed the posts.
While many may be cynical and say that this will encourage companies and brands to solely view their pages in “likes” and number who “are talking about this,” I’d like to look beyond that. The metrics on the front page are cool, anecdotally, but it’s the numbers available to the page administrators that we should give credence to. “People Are Talking About,” in conjunction with the “Page Posts” metrics on the front “Insights” page give me a better insight – in numbers – to what is resonating with our page’s fans. For a brand, this is a goldmine of information, which can help in planning a content creator or community manager’s entire editorial calendar.
The other recent change in metrics was Google’s roll out of real-time analytics on September 29th. This change allows people to see real time data. The biggest use for this right now? To measure the immediate impact of social media campaigns. It allows you to see how many people are on your site at that very moment, where they are in the world, how they got to your site (referring sites, Google searches, etc…) and what they’re doing there.
Why is this important? Because in the age of marketing via social media networks, it’s imperative that we be fast and adaptive, by waiting 24 hours for data, there’s something we might miss. Real time analytics can allow you to turn on a dime and target to searches and areas. Real time analytics give you the added value of being able to tweak content to get the most value out of it, and should be used in conjunction with your other metrics, with your editorial calendar and your long-term content strategy.
Of course… there’s something to be said to waiting for your data. Processing the data you have collected a little after the fact – 24 hours is not so long, in the real world, now is it? – gives you some perspective and allows you to view your social media strategy just that way – strategically.
Whether you are measuring Facebook Insights to see what is resonating most with your fans, or checking Google Real Time Analytics maniacally to see how your website is doing, these tools can go a long way in helping you understand how to build a better content strategy.