Setting up a social media monitoring program is essential for most organizations — but only half the battle when it comes to getting real ROI from your social media tracking.
To make sure you’re getting the most out of all that work you’ve put in to set up your program, you’ve eventually got to analyze all that data. To that end here are five handy tips to keep in mind:
1) Cover all your monitoring bases.. and then cover them again
Social media is a fast-moving beast, which means you should always have the most finely-tuned search queries possible: Cast your net too broad and you’ll have to pick through thousands (or millions) of pieces of irrelevant data, but cast it too narrow and you could wind up with hardly any data at all.
But perhaps the most important takeaway from this: Keep fine-tuning your search queries! Things change quickly, and your monitoring has to be flexible enough (and you or your monitoring company also have to stay on top of it enough) to roll with those changes.
2) Choose your metrics wisely
There can sometimes seem like there are as many possible metrics as there are Twitter users, but don’t worry: The important thing is making sure you’re using the right metrics for your organization’s goals.
Are you concerned about negative comments from a certain region within your own country, province, or state? Then cross-referencing regional tweets with sentiment analysis is probably for you. It all depends on what you’re looking to measure.
3) Benchmark by keeping your metrics consistent
Once you’ve chosen your metrics, it’s important to stick with them sto effectively track week-over-week, month-over-month and year-over-year progress by doing an apples-to-apples comparison.
You can always tweak your metrics, of course, but it’s in your best interest to keep things as consistent as possible over time.
4) Find your influencers
After you’ve run a few reports and gotten into the swing of the analysis game, you’ll want to use all your new insights to pinpoint the influencers driving the conversation around your industry, your brand, or whatever else you’re tracking.
And if you’re planning on outreaching to those influencers, you can then drill down into what kind of posts they’ve been putting out there, what their sentiment is around certain issues.
5) Don’t live in a vaccuum
All the social media monitoring and analysis in the world will make little difference if you don’t act on it, or at least share it with the rest of your organization. A regular e-mail briefing or distribution to internal stakeholders (I hate that term, but you know what I mean) that wraps up some of your most significant or important tweets, along with some ongoing analysis, is great for keeping everyone in the know (and, as a side benefit, lets the boss know you’re doing your job.