Rolling out the 3rd. installment of the series “Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence”, this time we’ll be talking about how to measure and analyze your network.
Last week we went over Part 1: The Hub in which we discussed how to look at traffic and rankings to establish a starting point and be able to measure and compare results over time. Later in the week I published Part 2: Content Performance and we looked into analyzing the actual content you generate on your blog rather than the blog itself…
Today we’ll talk about learning, measuring and comparing your networks. Just to be clear, your “network” is the people following you on Twitter, liking you on Facebook (to use the right terminology), connecting with you on Linkedin, etc. Some people call it community or tribe. We will try to get as much data as possible to get to know them better, wherever the hangout.
One thing I mentioned before in this series and I’ll say it again is that I’m not suggesting you should run your business based on these metrics, they do not affect your bottom line directly. You should focus on ROI, however, what we are doing here is establishing a series of metrics that will allow you to measure your presence online in order to perform better and get closer to those important goals.
Size does matter in some cases, in others don’t. For example, at Plural And Partners the focus on Twitter is not to reach a bigger audience but to identify and connect with key individuals in the industry. This really depends on your kind of business or products, you make that decision.
Get your number and establish a starting point to also visualize the growth, you can find this kind of stuff very easily, here are a couple of examples:
Your Facebook page offers Insights.
A chart allows you to visualize events or promotions over time, in the previous image you can see how the SocialMouths page increased the number of “Likes” when I gave away copies of the book “Engage”.
For your Twitter followers you should use a tool like TwitterCounter to get the same type of chart.
In your social media strategy, the counters are probably the least important metric. In some cases it might be important but definitely not the main focus. Let’s see what else we can learn about our networks…
When it comes to learning about the demographics on networks, the data is very basic and limited but you should gather what’s available in order to know your following a little better.
Again, Facebook Insights provides you with gender, age groups and some regional stats.
For Twitter, Ad.ly gives you a little snapshot like this
I didn’t expect this but it looks like the following from SocialMouths on Facebook is 52% female and 45% male while on Twitter is obviously dominated by male with a 62% – 38%. Remember that this is not about collecting numbers and pretty charts, it’s how you can adjust your strategy and reach your goals.
Another digit you should consider is the number of subscriptions on your blog, either RSS or Email. There are many ways to do this and services to use that will provide this kind of data, for SocialMouths I use FeedBurner so the chart will look something like this:
Your TRUE Network
The relationships you establish online and the number of followers or likes are not the same thing. You do not keep a conversation with 500 or 1,000 people. Reciprocity in following and liking is nothing more than an unspoken agreement in most cases, a 2-way connection that will never exchange a word.
Your true network is a much lower number, far more important than the number of followers or likes. In this case I will say that quantifying this group is not important but I could suggest to filter this group, perhaps on a Twitter List just for noise reduction purposes, this will automatically give you a number, then you’ll realize that your online relationships are not 15,000 but 75…
Your Own Analytics On A Spreadsheet
As we’ve been doing on the previous post for this series, grab all this information and dump it on a spreadsheet. The purpose is to have points in time to compare and to visualize all this data in one place. In this case, it would be a simple table like this one:
Of course you can include other information like regional stats or gender if you want.
Read The Whole Series
- Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence [Part 1]: The Hub
- Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence [Part 2]: Content Performance
- Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence [Part 3]: Your Network (You are here)
- Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence [Part 4]: Impact (Coming Soon)
- Snapshot Of Your Social Media Presence [Part 5]: Dashboard On A Spreadsheet (Coming Soon)
Now It’s Your Turn…
Is the size of your network important to you? Are you attracting the right crowd? What do you know about them and what metrics or tools do you use to measure it? Share your thoughts in the comments section…