How to Create Social Media Marketing Reports to Track Performance
Tweeting, updating your business Facebook page and regularly snapping images for Instagram – it all takes time. And we don’t just mean the actual uploading of images and writing of posts and tweets; there’s all the thought and planning that has to go into it as well. As a result, social media marketing can end up being pretty time-consuming.
So, is doing your own social media cost-effective for your business – or might you be better outsourcing your digital strategies to an expert? The only way to tell really is to track your social media. That way you can find out which social media channels work best for your business, and which ones you should frankly ditch. If you mark down all the following results on a spreadsheet then you’ll have a record you can keep going back to and compare with future content (and which will let you know if your ‘social media adjustments’ are on the right track).
Find out who your audience is
Are the type of people who follow you on Instagram similar to those who read your Facebook updates? One way to tell is to start analysing both sites – and any others you use – for audience engagement. By using software tracking tools, you should be able to tell where your audience are located geographically, their age bracket, whether they are male or female and if they’re new. For Facebook analytics Friends+Meworks well while Followerwonkdoes the business as far as Twitter is concerned. For the image-focused sites Instagram and Pinterest, you can get plenty of useful info via Tailwind.
Assess which type of social media posts work best
Want to know which type of updates are more successful for your business than others? Of course you do. But don’t worry, you don’t have to sit down and go through the last six months’ worth of posts and tweets. No, thankfully there is software that will do this for you. BuzzSumo, for instance, will look at whether or not you get more interest from, for instance, videos, images, text or link posts etc.
Find out what your audience is saying about you online
An invaluable way of finding out if your audience is having conversations about your business online- is to use tools that can track exactly that. These can let you know the number of positive or negative mentions and also (crucially) let you respond in real time. Some of the top tools that let you do this are Mention, TweetDeckand SEMrush. You could also keep an eye on hashtags your company uses.
Keep track of what your competitors are doing
Get ideas from what other companies in your sector are doing in order to improve your own social media offerings. You’ll be able to see which posts, tweets, images etc work well by how many likes, shares, retweets etc that they get. To check out in detail how other brands are doing, you could try using tools such as Likealyzeror Phlanx. These give data on social share of voice ie the number of people talking about your competitors and, importantly, what they are saying.
How to create a social media report
Insights into your social media performance are great, but relatively useless if you don’t track the results and analyse the data to make informed marketing decisions. Often, you won’t see immediate and direct ROI from your social media efforts, but the wider benefits include increasing brand awareness and customer retention. Creating social media reports are important to keep your strategy and efforts on track, set both long and short term goals and manage business expectations. Social media reports are essential for presenting performance to key stakeholders, different departments, and track the performance of in-house or out-sourced marketers.
- Set KPIs and stick to them. Too much data can make your report look confusing and difficult to understand (especially when being shared across the business to departments that are not involved in marketing). Keep the information concise and simply choose the numbers that you think will mean most to the company’s success, as well as your audience. This could be the number of conversions(ie leads to purchases), reach and impressions, engagement and share of voice (brand mentions by audience).
- Tailor the report to your audience. If your report is for your colleagues then you can go in to plenty of detail about which particular posts and campaigns worked best. If it’s for a senior management team, then numbers and brief analysis is best.
- Be SMART about it.What we mean is make sure your report and targets are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time Limited
- Make it visual.Obviously, we don’t mean make the entire report visual, but certainly put in some interesting graphics, maps and images to ‘liven things up’ as it were. A whole load of text can look boring and anything that can break it up is always a welcome relief to the eyes (and brain). It could make all the difference between people remembering your report or simply forgetting about it the moment they leave the room.
Putting your social media report together
- This should briefly state what your report is about, how you got the results and indeed, what they are.
- Show what you’ve achieved through your social media channels ie how many followers have clicked through to the website and purchased.
- This is the body of the report and should show exactly what the numbers are for each column e.g. new followers over the quarter, number of shares, total interactions etc.
- This can’t always be measured in numbers but is worth mentioning e.g. maybe an influencer you’ve been trying to reach has agreed to work with you in that reporting period.
- Analysis. Drilling down through the figures can show how they were achieved i.e. via a particular campaign.
- Conclusion. This will outline the key findings of your report and how it will influence a future social media strategy.
So, now that you know what to do, there should be no stopping you. Get that analysis and report sorted and make social media reallywork for you and the company.