I tend to judge businesses’ social media efforts based on how much content optimization they are doing based on data. A lot of Facebook marketers simply post content and hope for the best – safe to say this isn’t the best way to run your page, and definitely won’t lead to constant improvement in your efforts.
We all have to report to someone, be it clients, our marketing director, or the business owner. Naturally, everyone wants to show improvements in what they’re doing. The first step in achieving improvement is to start tracking your key metrics if you aren’t already. You can do this using Facebook Insights, or more detailed analytics platforms like Socialbakers.
These will allow you to see your Facebook performance over time in terms of reach, engagement, and raw interactions. This allows you to quickly produce something a little like the below to report:
The problem is, not many graphs will look as good as the above one! To achieve constant improvement like this you need to get really smart with your social content.
Once you’re tracking your performance, you are able to start analyzing more deeply to find ways to improve. Using some of the tools mentioned in a previous Social Media Today post, you can start to pull out more and more data to help you improve.
At Datify, we use the following process to constantly improve client’s content on Facebook. First, we start measuring their performance over time as discussed above. Next, we analyze the performance of each and every post that goes out. The priority here is to think about engagement rate (comments + likes + shares/total audience). In this formula total audience can be reach or page likes dependent upon your preference. We tend to use page likes, as you are then able to compare this to competitors at the next step. Other aspects to study include time of posts, type of post (photo, video, link, status update), post author, post topic, and any post targeting.
Having all of this data in one place allows you to go deeper into performance and create insight graphs such as the below:
By judging the quantity of different types of post versus their performance you can get an initial view on which content strands, types, and more are working and whether the balance of your content strategy is right.
This initial view allows you to optimise your strategy to start the improvement straight away. Sometimes presenting your data like this can show you some really interesting results that you weren’t expecting.
Once you make the initial changes to your schedule based on the above, you will need to constantly monitor performance to continue the improvement. Ideally you want to be studying your performance in this way weekly to enable you to continually optimise your strategy.
Another tactic is to study your competitors in the same way to pick up useful hints and tips that you can use in your content strategy going forward. We’re not suggesting you copy their content, but that you consider their campaigns and learn from them to see how you could potentially improve by developing their general ideas. To study competitors quickly you will most likely need a paid analytics tool as Facebook insights will only provide you with their page like growth rather than any interaction or engagement metrics.
In conclusion, you need to get granular with your data and analyze every post you publish to assess it’s performance so that you have a clear picture of the data informing your content strategy going forward. You need to invest serious time into analyzing your performance in order to continually learn and optimise, and ultimately to improve over time.
Ben Harper is one of the co-founders of Datify, a data driven marketing company based in the UK. Datify specialises in insight led strategies focussed on driving ROI for a range of clients across the social & search arenas.
Top image courtesy of Shutterstock.