An Incredible Research And Monitoring Tool for Social Media
Need to establish Social Media ROI? I just might have the tool for you.
When it comes to figuring out whether or not your social media marketing efforts are worthwhile, there are several factors to consider.
Certainly, if you can track whether or not a lead via social converts into a paid customer, that's the most tangible and valuable measurement. Properly configured, Google Analytics can easily measure your product sales and where those sales came from. The problem with Google Analytics though is that it only measures the current session for a user. If they come back a week later and decide to purchase then, you won't see that initial referral. So businesses with a longer sales cycle need more robust marketing tools like Curata, which does a better job of tracking the lifetime activity of a prospect.
At a higher level, you can measure how much traffic your website and online business gets from social channels. Each social visitor represents a reader, prospect, and someone who can potentially share your content out to social themselves, furthering your reach. And over time, you might be able to draw correlations between increases in social referral traffic and increases in product goals or subscriptions. Thus deriving a tangible value for social referral traffic, and potentially incentive for more targeted activity.
But how do you measure reputation and authority? How to you gauge whether your social activity is leading to more people talking about you and your brand, and helping to solidify the ground for future engagements and sales?
As the name suggests, the purpose of Brandwatch (http://www.brandwatch.com) is to help you watch how your brand performs on social media. It's an extraordinarily powerful tool capable of demonstrating exactly how your brand is performing on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
I have tested many different apps and tools to help monitor and research social media activity, particularly Twitter. In virtually every instance, those tools were unable to bring up historical data and provide insight into activities which had already occurred.
In other words, you had to have been using the tool all along in order to utilize it.
Not so with Brandwatch.
I was able to see historical activity and analysis from months prior. Which proved to be invaluable when attempting to measure the success of a particular campaign.
But what I really like about Brandwatch is the daily tracking of Twitter activity in a bar chart that allows me to monitor follower growth alongside mentions, retweets, and other engagement metrics. This lets me see just how effective our Twitter growth strategies are for attracting the right audience.
While no product is perfect, there are few visible flaws with Brandwatch. Pricing, of course, is a concern, but the service being provided by Brandwatch is extraordinarily valuable, and truly priced accordingly. It's unlikely that bloggers or solopreneurs would have a need for such data analysis, and can monitor their campaigns by combining several other tools, like Hootsuite and Google Sheets.
The first major project of interest, as I mentioned earlier, was being able to get historical data about a campaign that had been run and completed in July of 2015. With Brandwatch's help, I was able to research #SiteSellPresents (a unique hashtag used to promote our Entrepreneur's Hangout series), and view an incredible amount of statistical data. Such as:
- Sentiment (Positive / Negative)
- Top Stories
- Top Hashtags
- Most Mentioned Tweeters
- Most Popular Tweets
- Top Sites, including News, Blogs, Forums
And more! And with many additional details provided for each area.
This allows us to calculate just how much reach and interest the campaign generated, beyond the traffic metrics that we gleaned from Google Analytics.
The data revealed our top hashtags, the reach of those hashtags, and even our most active tweeters.
Hootsuite analytics do not offer such global analysis as Brandwatch. Hootsuite's reports are limited to the tweets and shortened links that are sent through Hootsuite, and therefore cannot gauge tweets by others.
Another campaign that I've been running, more of an experiment really, has been to test a cocktail of several tools and tactics designed to grow my targeted Twitter following at a more rapid pace.
While there are lots of ways to get more Twitter followers, the point of my experiment was to gain targeted and engaged followers, so simply monitoring follower count growth was insufficient.
With the help of Brandwatch, along with Google Analytics, I'm able to see how my new followers are engaging with my tweets and profile, and additional activity the growth is resulting in.
Impressions is one of several available graphs to illustrate brand activity.
I strongly recommend working with a member of the Brandwatch team to set up an initial set of projects so that you can begin to realize ROI right away. And for Hootsuite Enterprise users, there's a Brandwatch app that you can use to integrate Brandwatch into your Hootsuite dashboard.
If you're struggling to get a handle on your brand's social reach, this is the tool to try.
Disclaimer: I am not an affiliate of Brandwatch nor was I paid to write this review. I was provided a complimentary account in order to test and evaluate the service.
By Mike Allton, Content Marketing Practitioner
Mike is a Content Marketing Practitioner, Blogger and Author in St. Louis, and the Chief Marketing Officer at SiteSell. He has been working with websites and the Internet since the early '90's, and is active on all of the major social networks. Mike teaches a holistic approach to content marketing that leverages blog content, social media and SEO to drive traffic, generate leads, and convert those leads into sales.
Mike is the author of, "The Unofficial Book On HootSuite: The #1 Tool for Social Media Management", "The Ultimate Guide to the Perfect LinkedIn Profile.", and "Blog Promotionology, The Art & Science of Blog Promotion."Follow @Mike_Allton