Social media is a sexy beast. Every business should find it an attractive proposition to be able to share well-crafted messages, content and images with a potential audience of millions. But what shouldn’t be overlooked, and often is, as it doesn’t involve like buttons, filtered images and 10 second video clips, is the monitoring, analysis and reporting of data. It depends on the client, but typically you need to be showing that social media activity can drive traffic, enquiries and ultimately, sales.
When working with new social media clients, we are often challenged with how best to report on their return on investment. Some businesses will deem brand awareness a key goal. In these cases message impressions and reach figures will be central to the reporting process. But for any client with a sales function on its website, the flow of web traffic to the site and the audience behaviour when they are there, will be absolutely key.
What we always recommend is having access to a client’s Google Analytics pages and then we set specific goals. These targets could include traffic volume to specific pages, hits from certain geographical locations or the number of enquiries made through the site. This gives us the power to look beyond the original reach figure and burrow down to exactly whom we are talking to and where they are being directed. In some respects, the analysis of digital messaging is more accurate and accountable than traditional PR activity.
Targeting specific market audiences with crafted messages and then directing them to specific web pages will make sales, and there is nothing better to report to a client than a specific instance of where a successful customer journey can be tracked as originating from social media.
With access to Google Analytics data, we can track in real time the flow of traffic coming through social media channels to a website. For example, if a client has a new blog, we will target the social media messaging to drive specific audiences to the content. With detailed reporting on Google Analytics, we can then break down this traffic by its location, age, sex, and device – we can even see their time spent on site and where they went next. This takes a client’s social media strategy, and our integration within their overall marketing plans, to another level.