06: A Data-Driven Approach: Evaluate & Adjust Your Social Media Marketing Strategy
RE-EVALUATE, TEST, AND DO IT ALL AGAIN
You’ve put in the work. You’ve got a plan in place. You’re done! Let’s celebrate. Well, not quite yet. As you begin to implement your social media marketing strategy, you’ll want to track your results. By monitoring what’s happening, you’re likely to learn which strategies are working and which are not. There might just be content that performs better than you expected. And you’ll certainly want to know that.
Imagine if you simply implemented a plan. Would that be enough? To maximize your social media efforts, it’s necessary to continually evaluate what’s working and what’s not. Then you can make data-driven adjustments along the way. Let’s walk through how to evaluate your social media marketing strategy and learn ways to adjust it based on the data you gather.
1. Revisit Your SMART Goals
Before diving into evaluating your strategy’s performance, it’s important that you revisit your specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals. Whether your objective was to increase brand awareness, drive website traffic, or generate leads, revisiting your goals will help you determine which metrics to track.
2. Tracking Your Results
You need to track and analyze relevant data to evaluate your social media marketing efforts. Fortunately, social media platforms offer various analytics tools to help you gain valuable insights. Some key metrics to consider include:
a) Reach and Impressions: Assess the number of unique users who see your content (reach) and the total number of times your content is displayed (impressions). This data helps gauge your brand’s visibility and the effectiveness of your content distribution.
b) Engagement: Measure user interaction with your content, including likes, comments, shares, and click-through rates. Engagement metrics highlight the resonance and impact of your social media posts.
c) Conversion Rates: Track the number of social media-driven conversions, such as newsletter sign-ups, purchases, or form submissions. Link tracking and UTM parameters can provide valuable insights into the conversion path and the effectiveness of different campaigns.
d) Customer Sentiment: Monitor mentions, comments, and sentiment analysis to understand how your audience perceives your brand. This data lets you adjust your messaging and promptly address any potential issues.
3. Reporting Periods
To assess the effectiveness of your social media strategy accurately, it’s essential to establish appropriate reporting periods. Short-term analysis focuses on immediate performance and allows for quick adjustments. Long-term analysis provides insights into trends, audience behavior, and campaign effectiveness over an extended period. Consider both reporting periods to comprehensively understand your strategy’s impact.
4. Identifying What’s Working
After gathering and analyzing your data, it’s time to identify what’s working well in your social media marketing strategy. Look for trends and patterns that indicate success. Key indicators include:
a) High Engagement Rates: Posts that generate a significant number of likes, shares, and comments demonstrate that your content resonates with your audience. Identify the characteristics and themes of these successful posts to replicate their success.
b) Conversion Rates: Identify the social media channels or campaigns that drive the most conversions. Evaluate the messaging, visuals, and targeting strategies used in these successful campaigns and replicate them in future initiatives.
c) Audience Growth: Track the growth of your social media following. Identify the tactics that contributed to significant spikes in followers and engagement, such as partnerships, influencer collaborations, or compelling content formats.
5. Adjusting Your Strategy
While identifying what’s working is an important step, it’s equally important to identify areas for improvement and make necessary adjustments. Here are some ideas of how you might adjust your social media marketing strategy:
a) Content Optimization: Analyze the performance of different content types, such as images, videos, or infographics. Identify which formats resonate best with your audience and optimize your content strategy accordingly.
b) Audience Targeting: Refine your audience targeting by analyzing the demographics, interests, and behaviors of your most engaged followers. Adjust your social media ads and organic content to align with their preferences better.
c) Posting Schedule: Analyze engagement metrics based on posting times and frequencies. Identify when your audience is most active and adjust your posting schedule to maximize reach and engagement.
d) Experimentation: Be bold! Try new ideas and test different approaches. A/B testing can provide valuable insights into what resonates best with your audience and help refine your social media strategy.
And Now Repeat
Evaluating and adjusting your social media marketing strategy is an ongoing process that requires a data-driven approach. By setting SMART goals, tracking relevant metrics, and analyzing the results, you can identify what’s working and make informed adjustments to optimize your social media efforts. Then, regularly review your data, assess key performance indicators, and refine your strategy to ensure you effectively engage your audience and achieve your marketing objectives.
Read chapters 1-5 of the six-step social media strategy guide
01: Create Social Media Marketing Goals >>> 02: Create Buyer Personas to Attract Your Ideal Customer >>> 03: Learn How to Conduct an Audit of Your Social Media >>> 04: Find Inspiration for Your Social Media Content >>> 05: Easy-to-Use Social Media Content Planner