Social media has transformed how businesses market their products and services. It allows brands to have more personal interactions with consumers and leads, and lets them engage about the topics that matter most to them. While most businesses looking to expand their reach understand how to create and maintain social media profiles, they may not see the kind of engagement they initially expected, or they may be surprised that engagement may seem to drop despite checking off all the boxes that comes with social media upkeep. If you can’t determine the cause of your recent lack of success with social media marketing, it may be time to conduct a full-blown social media audit.
What Is a Social Media Audit?
Think of a social media audit as a wellness checkup for your social media marketing channels. It can show you how they have performed over time, analyze engagement trends, and identify interactions or changes that may be hampering your marketing success. Investing in social media audit services from a reputable service provider can be an incredible asset to virtually any company.
Some of the key metrics to measure and questions to ask during a social media audit include:
- How often do you post updates to your social media profiles? Do you have similar timelines for each profile, or do you focus on one or two more than others?
- What type of reactions do your social media posts receive? Do you notice different types of posts yield different amounts of likes and shares?
- Have you tracked your follower/subscriber count over time? How many new subscribers or followers do you gain during an average week?
- Financial investment. How much are you paying to maintain your social media profiles? Can you measure the return on the investment?
- Is your business on the right platforms for your target audience? Just like different kinds of consumers, different platforms have users more specific to one demographic. Have you considered reaching out beyond Facebook and Twitter? Snapchat and YouTube have growing membership and are upcoming consumers.
If your social media profiles are not working the way you expected, you need to identify the problems quickly and develop functional solutions. If you don’t know how to answer these questions, consider a professional social media audit.
Develop an Audit System for Each Social Media Platform
Most social media platforms offer similar types of engagement tools for users. On Facebook, users can like, share, and comment on your posts. On Twitter, users can like, retweet, or reply to your posts, and they also have the option to “quote tweet” your posts and make their own comments to their followers. You cannot judge each social media platform the same way; you need to develop a system that lets you track various metrics specific to each platform.
Many social media platforms offer businesses various tools to track their performance. For example, on Twitter you can see your tweets’ impressions, or the number of times they have appeared on other users’ feeds thanks to retweets from your followers and their followers. This essentially forms a web of engagement and expands awareness of your brand. Make sure you understand these metrics and then create a spreadsheet or some other kind of system to track them over time. When you notice patterns, start asking more questions:
- Did you have a post that seemed to attract much more engagement than your usual posts? What was different about it compared to your usual posts?
- Do you see any trends when you post guest content or influencer content?
- Does your original content outperform guest and influencer-related posts, or vice versa?
- When you post multimedia content like photos and videos to platforms like Instagram and Twitter, where do you see the most engagement?
- Are you growing your follower/subscriber count relatively evenly across all your social media profiles, or do some platforms seem more successful than others?
- Does the timing of your posts seem to have an effect? Do your posts early in the day receive more engagement than night and weekend posts, or vice versa?
These questions are a jumping off point for how to fix your social media campaign and reach a new world of potential customers. If this sounds complex to you, you’re not wrong. Some people even create careers out of helping businesses and organizations craft their social media content.
Measure Overall Success and Identify Pain Points
Once you start comparing the success of different types of social media posts on different platforms, you can start developing solutions for the areas in which your brand struggles. This first phase of your social media audit hinges on identifying your strengths on each platform and determining which platforms are most valuable to your brand in the long run.
Track everything from post type to link structure to the timing of your delivery. Once you start to identify the posts that receive the most engagement, you can more easily capitalize on your followers’ needs and interests. A social media audit should be a regular part of your overall social media marketing plan, and managed service providers specializing in social media marketing services can be a great boon for any brand struggling to cultivate stronger social media presence.
Develop Audience-Focused Social Media Content
The next audience-related metric you should track is demographics. Most social media platforms offer businesses the tools to track user-submitted information, and you may notice patterns on different platforms. For example, you may have more younger male users on Twitter but primarily older female users on Pinterest. Your Snapchat audience will likely be very young while your Facebook and LinkedIn profiles will likely have more older followers.
Once you understand the demographics of the followers of your various social media profiles, you can start developing content tailored to each of them. For example, young people fresh out of high school have vastly different tastes, interests, and hobbies than older adults preparing for retirement. Your Instagram audience expects visual content and video while your Facebook and Twitter followers would likely prefer written content.
Grow Your Business With Social Media Auditing
While a social media audit can help you tailor content specific to your different audiences, it can also help you create a more consistent presence across all of your social media profiles. As you conduct your audit, check to make sure your visual branding and tone are consistent. Look for any quality discrepancies for your logo, bio information, and contact information. Make sure your various audiences can expect the same quality and personality no matter which of your social media profiles they visit.
Also check out our post: How to Do a Twitter Audit: Beginner 101.