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Measuring Social Media:
Assessing Your Impact
Kelli Hansen
Special Collections & Rare Books
University of Missouri Libraries
hansenkb@missouri.edu | @BiblioKelli
Social media is not a
numbers game.
It’s a conversation.
“conversation” by Chris Blakeley CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/csb13/4387566462
Start with a Goal
“Soccer Goal (Front)” by laffy4k CC BY 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/laffy4k/4564776861
“001_365_01.01.2013” by Paula Naugle CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/plnaugle/8334714234
Specific. Who? What?
Where?
Measurable. How many
or how much?
Attainable. Is this
realistic?
Relevant. Why?
Time-bound. When?
Goal SMART Goal
Make connections with students. During the 2015 fall semester, we will
tweet four times per day using images
and hashtags to increase our local
following by 10%.
Promote services and events. We will promote our services and
events this month by making 2-3
Twitter and Facebook posts for each
specific event or service.
Increase awareness of our library’s
collections.
We aim to see a 15% growth in
referrals to our website from social
media by posting digitized images and
links 3-5 times per week during the
2015-2016 academic year.
SMART Goal Measure
During the 2015 fall semester, we will
tweet four times per day using images
and hashtags to increase our local
following by 10%.
• Post frequency and timing
• Follower interests
• Follower growth
• Follower locations
We will promote our services and
events this month by making 2-3
Twitter and Facebook posts per week
with links to each specific event or
service.
• Engagement rates
• Post frequency and timing
• Reach
• Referrals
We aim to see a 15% growth in
referrals to our website from social
media by tweeting digitized images
and links 3-5 times per week during
the 2015-2016 academic year.
• Website referrals
• Post frequency and timing
• Retweet rate
Let your measurements fit your goals.
Terminology Defined
“dictionary definition: work” by Jeffrey Cuvillier, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via
Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/jaboney/390315232
Analytics terminology
• Reach = the number of people who could have
seen your post, tweet, status update, etc.
• Organic reach (on Facebook) = the number of unique
people who saw your unsponsored post
• Impressions = the aggregate number of times your
piece of content shows up on a screen.
• Engagement = clicks, likes, shares, retweets, or
other interactions with your posts
• Engagement rates are calculated differently across
different platforms
• Referrals = the number of people who end up on your
website from a specific link source
• KPI = Key Performance Indicator. The metric that best shows
how well you’re meeting your goals.
• Conversion rate = the percentage of users who do what
you’re hoping they’ll do (e.g. register for your workshop,
access your LibGuide, or check out your new books)
• Leads = potential customers. Or, in our world, potential
library advocates.
MORE: “57 Basic Marketing Analytics Terms Everyone Should Know” by Rachel Sprung,
HubSpot Blogs, Feb. 6, 2015. http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/hubspot-google-analytics-
glossary
Analytics terminology
SMART Goal Measure
During the 2015 fall semester, we will
tweet four times per day using images
and hashtags to increase our local
following by 10%.
• Post frequency and timing
• Follower interests
• Follower growth
• Follower locations
We will promote our services and
events this month by making 2-3
Twitter and Facebook posts per week
with links to each specific event or
service.
• Engagement rates
• Post frequency and timing
• Reach
• Referrals
We aim to see a 15% growth in
referrals to our website from social
media by tweeting digitized images
and links 3-5 times per week during
the 2015-2016 academic year.
• Website referrals
• Post frequency and timing
• Retweet rate
What’s your KPI?
SMART Goal Measure
During the 2015 fall semester, we will
tweet four times per day using images
and hashtags to increase our local
following by 10%.
• Post frequency and timing
• Follower interests
• Follower growth
• Follower locations
We will promote our services and
events this month by making 2-3
Twitter and Facebook posts per week
with links to each specific event or
service.
• Engagement rates
• Post frequency and timing
• Reach
• Referrals
We aim to see a 15% growth in
referrals to our website from social
media by tweeting digitized images
and links 3-5 times per week during
the 2015-2016 academic year.
• Website referrals
• Post frequency and timing
• Retweet rate
What’s your KPI?
Vanity
Metrics
“Barbie Vanity” by deborah is lola CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/deborah-is-lola/6352245598
• Follower counts
• Raw numbers of
likes and shares
• Hits
• Page views
• Visits
• Time on site, etc.
Vanity
Metrics
“Vanity metrics make
you feel good, but
they don’t offer clear
guidance for what to
do.”
-Eric Ries
“Barbie Vanity” by deborah is lola CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/deborah-is-lola/6352245598
Market Research:
Know Your Platforms
“Platform Nine and Three Quarters” by jillyspoon, CC-BY 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/17516529@N00/10122995635
Adapt your
message to
fit the
platform’s
personality.
Who is out there?
All Internet Users
0
20
40
60
80
100
18-29 30-49 50-64
Percentage by Age
0
20
40
60
80
100
18-29 30-49 50-64
Percentage by Age
Source: Maeve Duggan, et al. “Demographics of Key Social Networking Platforms.” Pew Research Center, January 9, 2015.
http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/01/09/demographics-of-key-social-networking-platforms-2/
All Internet Users
Who is out there?
All Internet Users
0
20
40
60
80
100
18-29 30-49 50-64
Percentage by Age
All Internet Users
0
20
40
60
80
100
18-29 30-49 50-64
Percentage by Age
Source: Irfan Ahmad, “#SocialMedia 2014: User Demographics For Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest - #infographic” Digital Information World, October 13, 2014.
http://www.digitalinformationworld.com/2014/10/social-media-user-demographics-linkedin-tumblr-facebook-and-more-infographic.html
Don’t count out the little guys.
Headline and left graph: http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/25/tumblr-overtakes-instagram-as-fastest-growing-social-platform-snapchat-is-the-fastest-growing-app/
Right graph: Omar Akhtar, “Tumblr is the fastest growing social network of 2014,” The Hub, November 24, 2014. http://www.thehubcomms.com/social-media/tumblr-is-the-fastest-growing-social-network-of-
2014/article/385342/
How often to post?
Platform Frequency
Facebook 1-2 posts per day
Posting infrequently loses connection with
your audience; posting more than twice
per day is annoying.
Twitter 3-4 tweets per day
Engagement decreases after the third
tweet.
Instagram 1-2 posts per day
But there’s no drop in engagement if you
post more.
Blogs 2 times per week
“Companies that increase blogging from
3-5X/month to 6-8X/month almost double
their leads.”
Source: Kevan Lee, “Infographic: How Often Should You Post on Social Media? See the Most Popular Research and Tips.”
BufferSocial, February 25, 2015. https://blog.bufferapp.com/how-often-post-social-media
What time to post?
Platform Best Time Worst Time
Facebook 1:00 – 4:00 pm After 8:00 pm, before 8:00 am
Twitter 1:00 – 3:00 pm After 8:00 pm, before 9:00 am
Instagram 5:00 pm, 8:00 – 11:00 pm /
12:00 – 4:00 am
Around 9:00 am and 6:00 pm
Tumblr 7:00 – 10:00 pm Before 4:00 pm
Pinterest Saturday mornings Monday-Friday, 8:00-5:00
Sources: Rachel Gillett, “The Best (and Worst) Times to Post on Social Media (Infographic).” FastCompany, Sept. 25, 2014.
http://www.fastcompany.com/3036184/how-to-be-a-success-at-everything/the-best-and-worst-times-to-post-on-social-media-
infograph; Damon Beres, “Here’s the Best Time to Post a Photo on Instagram,” The Huffington Post, Feb. 26, 2015.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/25/get-instagram-likes_n_6751614.html
It depends on your audience!
Platforms with free, built-in analytics Platforms without free, built-in analytics
(paid only)
A few analytics for
free, most for a fee
What can you track?
Where to find the data
“Data” by aNto, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/dia-a-dia/7046151669
Facebook Insights
analytics.twitter.com
followerwonk.com
sumall.com
app.cyfe.com
iconosquare.com
Scheduling Apps
Google Analytics
Growth and Engagement
“First Tomato Seedling of 2010” by Chlot’s Run, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via
Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/chiotsrun/4472671089
Facebook gives you lots of analytics.
Not all are useful.
Look for growth over time, not a specific number.
Page
Likes
What
does this
graph tell
you?
Twitter gives you lots of analytics.
They might be useful in context.
Is this good
or bad?
Download your data and create
your own tracking spreadsheet.
Understand Your Audience
Understand your audience:
When and where
Understand your audience:
Demographics
Conclusion: Facebook is not where we are reaching students.
Understand your audience:
Are they on Twitter?
Understand your audience:
Best times to post
Understand your audience:
Location
Understand your audience:
Interests
Understand your audience:
Location and Interests
What do high-engagement
tweets have in common?
Photos,
meaningful hash tags,
calls to action,
and appeals to specific
communities.
What are ingredients for reach and
engagement?
Unique and
shareable tidbits
Thought-provoking
news articles
Local interests
Accept that you might not be able to
increase your reach (unless you pay).
1.Where is your audience?
2.When are they online?
3.How often do you have time to post?
4.Which platforms best fit your goals?
Thanks!
Questions?
Kelli Hansen
hansenkb@missouri.edu | @BiblioKelli

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Measuring Social Media: Assessing Your Impact

  • 1. Measuring Social Media: Assessing Your Impact Kelli Hansen Special Collections & Rare Books University of Missouri Libraries hansenkb@missouri.edu | @BiblioKelli
  • 2.
  • 3. Social media is not a numbers game. It’s a conversation. “conversation” by Chris Blakeley CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/csb13/4387566462
  • 4. Start with a Goal “Soccer Goal (Front)” by laffy4k CC BY 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/laffy4k/4564776861
  • 5. “001_365_01.01.2013” by Paula Naugle CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/plnaugle/8334714234 Specific. Who? What? Where? Measurable. How many or how much? Attainable. Is this realistic? Relevant. Why? Time-bound. When?
  • 6. Goal SMART Goal Make connections with students. During the 2015 fall semester, we will tweet four times per day using images and hashtags to increase our local following by 10%. Promote services and events. We will promote our services and events this month by making 2-3 Twitter and Facebook posts for each specific event or service. Increase awareness of our library’s collections. We aim to see a 15% growth in referrals to our website from social media by posting digitized images and links 3-5 times per week during the 2015-2016 academic year.
  • 7. SMART Goal Measure During the 2015 fall semester, we will tweet four times per day using images and hashtags to increase our local following by 10%. • Post frequency and timing • Follower interests • Follower growth • Follower locations We will promote our services and events this month by making 2-3 Twitter and Facebook posts per week with links to each specific event or service. • Engagement rates • Post frequency and timing • Reach • Referrals We aim to see a 15% growth in referrals to our website from social media by tweeting digitized images and links 3-5 times per week during the 2015-2016 academic year. • Website referrals • Post frequency and timing • Retweet rate Let your measurements fit your goals.
  • 8. Terminology Defined “dictionary definition: work” by Jeffrey Cuvillier, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/jaboney/390315232
  • 9. Analytics terminology • Reach = the number of people who could have seen your post, tweet, status update, etc. • Organic reach (on Facebook) = the number of unique people who saw your unsponsored post • Impressions = the aggregate number of times your piece of content shows up on a screen. • Engagement = clicks, likes, shares, retweets, or other interactions with your posts • Engagement rates are calculated differently across different platforms
  • 10. • Referrals = the number of people who end up on your website from a specific link source • KPI = Key Performance Indicator. The metric that best shows how well you’re meeting your goals. • Conversion rate = the percentage of users who do what you’re hoping they’ll do (e.g. register for your workshop, access your LibGuide, or check out your new books) • Leads = potential customers. Or, in our world, potential library advocates. MORE: “57 Basic Marketing Analytics Terms Everyone Should Know” by Rachel Sprung, HubSpot Blogs, Feb. 6, 2015. http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/hubspot-google-analytics- glossary Analytics terminology
  • 11. SMART Goal Measure During the 2015 fall semester, we will tweet four times per day using images and hashtags to increase our local following by 10%. • Post frequency and timing • Follower interests • Follower growth • Follower locations We will promote our services and events this month by making 2-3 Twitter and Facebook posts per week with links to each specific event or service. • Engagement rates • Post frequency and timing • Reach • Referrals We aim to see a 15% growth in referrals to our website from social media by tweeting digitized images and links 3-5 times per week during the 2015-2016 academic year. • Website referrals • Post frequency and timing • Retweet rate What’s your KPI?
  • 12. SMART Goal Measure During the 2015 fall semester, we will tweet four times per day using images and hashtags to increase our local following by 10%. • Post frequency and timing • Follower interests • Follower growth • Follower locations We will promote our services and events this month by making 2-3 Twitter and Facebook posts per week with links to each specific event or service. • Engagement rates • Post frequency and timing • Reach • Referrals We aim to see a 15% growth in referrals to our website from social media by tweeting digitized images and links 3-5 times per week during the 2015-2016 academic year. • Website referrals • Post frequency and timing • Retweet rate What’s your KPI?
  • 13. Vanity Metrics “Barbie Vanity” by deborah is lola CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/deborah-is-lola/6352245598 • Follower counts • Raw numbers of likes and shares • Hits • Page views • Visits • Time on site, etc.
  • 14. Vanity Metrics “Vanity metrics make you feel good, but they don’t offer clear guidance for what to do.” -Eric Ries “Barbie Vanity” by deborah is lola CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/deborah-is-lola/6352245598
  • 15. Market Research: Know Your Platforms “Platform Nine and Three Quarters” by jillyspoon, CC-BY 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/17516529@N00/10122995635
  • 16. Adapt your message to fit the platform’s personality.
  • 17. Who is out there? All Internet Users 0 20 40 60 80 100 18-29 30-49 50-64 Percentage by Age 0 20 40 60 80 100 18-29 30-49 50-64 Percentage by Age Source: Maeve Duggan, et al. “Demographics of Key Social Networking Platforms.” Pew Research Center, January 9, 2015. http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/01/09/demographics-of-key-social-networking-platforms-2/ All Internet Users
  • 18. Who is out there? All Internet Users 0 20 40 60 80 100 18-29 30-49 50-64 Percentage by Age All Internet Users 0 20 40 60 80 100 18-29 30-49 50-64 Percentage by Age Source: Irfan Ahmad, “#SocialMedia 2014: User Demographics For Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest - #infographic” Digital Information World, October 13, 2014. http://www.digitalinformationworld.com/2014/10/social-media-user-demographics-linkedin-tumblr-facebook-and-more-infographic.html
  • 19. Don’t count out the little guys. Headline and left graph: http://techcrunch.com/2014/11/25/tumblr-overtakes-instagram-as-fastest-growing-social-platform-snapchat-is-the-fastest-growing-app/ Right graph: Omar Akhtar, “Tumblr is the fastest growing social network of 2014,” The Hub, November 24, 2014. http://www.thehubcomms.com/social-media/tumblr-is-the-fastest-growing-social-network-of- 2014/article/385342/
  • 20. How often to post? Platform Frequency Facebook 1-2 posts per day Posting infrequently loses connection with your audience; posting more than twice per day is annoying. Twitter 3-4 tweets per day Engagement decreases after the third tweet. Instagram 1-2 posts per day But there’s no drop in engagement if you post more. Blogs 2 times per week “Companies that increase blogging from 3-5X/month to 6-8X/month almost double their leads.” Source: Kevan Lee, “Infographic: How Often Should You Post on Social Media? See the Most Popular Research and Tips.” BufferSocial, February 25, 2015. https://blog.bufferapp.com/how-often-post-social-media
  • 21. What time to post? Platform Best Time Worst Time Facebook 1:00 – 4:00 pm After 8:00 pm, before 8:00 am Twitter 1:00 – 3:00 pm After 8:00 pm, before 9:00 am Instagram 5:00 pm, 8:00 – 11:00 pm / 12:00 – 4:00 am Around 9:00 am and 6:00 pm Tumblr 7:00 – 10:00 pm Before 4:00 pm Pinterest Saturday mornings Monday-Friday, 8:00-5:00 Sources: Rachel Gillett, “The Best (and Worst) Times to Post on Social Media (Infographic).” FastCompany, Sept. 25, 2014. http://www.fastcompany.com/3036184/how-to-be-a-success-at-everything/the-best-and-worst-times-to-post-on-social-media- infograph; Damon Beres, “Here’s the Best Time to Post a Photo on Instagram,” The Huffington Post, Feb. 26, 2015. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/25/get-instagram-likes_n_6751614.html It depends on your audience!
  • 22. Platforms with free, built-in analytics Platforms without free, built-in analytics (paid only) A few analytics for free, most for a fee What can you track?
  • 23. Where to find the data “Data” by aNto, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/dia-a-dia/7046151669
  • 32. Growth and Engagement “First Tomato Seedling of 2010” by Chlot’s Run, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 via Flickr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/chiotsrun/4472671089
  • 33. Facebook gives you lots of analytics. Not all are useful. Look for growth over time, not a specific number. Page Likes What does this graph tell you?
  • 34. Twitter gives you lots of analytics. They might be useful in context. Is this good or bad?
  • 35. Download your data and create your own tracking spreadsheet.
  • 38. Understand your audience: Demographics Conclusion: Facebook is not where we are reaching students.
  • 39. Understand your audience: Are they on Twitter?
  • 44.
  • 45. What do high-engagement tweets have in common? Photos, meaningful hash tags, calls to action, and appeals to specific communities.
  • 46. What are ingredients for reach and engagement? Unique and shareable tidbits Thought-provoking news articles Local interests
  • 47. Accept that you might not be able to increase your reach (unless you pay).
  • 48. 1.Where is your audience? 2.When are they online? 3.How often do you have time to post? 4.Which platforms best fit your goals?

Editor's Notes

  1. Social media is not a broadcast medium or a platform for pushing the library’s agenda. It’s another venue where we can participate in conversations with our users. Social cues for conversations in person – this is how we can think about using analytics in social media.
  2. Using social media effectively has to relate to goals, otherwise it’s aimless and can be a real time sink with few outcomes to show for your time investment.
  3. It helps to start with an over-arching goal, maybe part of your organization’s mission statement or a goal that your library has set for the coming year, and then rewrite it as a SMART goal.
  4. What you will measure and pull out of your analytics data depends on your goals – because out of context the numbers don’t mean anything.
  5. Before we start talking about data, though, it is helpful to figure out what all these terms mean. A lot of analytics terminology comes out of marketing language and web development language, and it’s not intuitive to those of us who aren’t trained in those areas.
  6. So, going back to the goals and measurements we looked at earlier, there are several things you’d probably want to track to make sure you’re working effectively, but can you tell what your KPI is for each goal?
  7. These are the measurements I thought were the KPIs for each of the goals we looked at. What do you think?
  8. One word of caution about things you don’t want to measure. Marketers have a term for these too – they call them vanity metrics. These are raw, unadjusted numbers. Often they look like big, impressive numbers, but what do they mean? You can’t really tell out of context.
  9. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t tell whether a number is good or bad, it’s probably a vanity metric.
  10. Analytics in the aggregate can also tell you a lot about the various platforms and the differences among them.
  11. This is mostly a joke, but there’s actually some truth here too. We’ll go back to this concept of adapting your message later, but for now I just wanted to point out that they’re not all the same and you can’t treat them all the same. You can be consistent across all channels, but not the same everywhere. Let’s look at some reasons for that.
  12. Facebook: 73% of the internet, very high percentage of the traditional student demographic, seems like a no-brainer. Right? Maybe… We’ll talk about that more in a bit. Twitter: about a quarter of the internet, less young people – but heavily used by professionals, academics and journalists. For us, since we’re kind of a niche area, we researched and found that there are lots of historians on Twitter and they even have their own hash tag. Research and find whether there are communities of interest already in place for you on Twitter.
  13. Instagram – I’m not on Instagram, but it is definitely worth a look if you consider the demographics. It’s a little more than a quarter of the Internet, but look how many young people are there. And then there’s Tumblr, which is my favorite of the three platforms we’re on. It’s a tiny percentage of the Internet, but it’s been great for us because Tumblr staff are very friendly to libraries, and because the posts show up well in Google search results.
  14. In my opinion, Tumblr and Instagram are the two platforms to watch, especially if you are interested in outreach to students. Pinterest is also interesting for visual content, but I am more reserved about it because you can’t see the content unless you’re logged in, and it’s very retail-driven – people seem to use it mainly to share products and marketing images they’re interested in, not to generate and share original content.
  15. Market research can also inform your posting schedule. Social Bakers study on use of these platforms among major brands found that these post frequencies are most effective.
  16. Market research can also inform your posting schedule. BUT you have to consider when your particular audience is online, so the best times for you can be very different from the best times according to the market research.
  17. You can find information about page likes, reach, engagement and information about your followers, and you can also export data from here.
  18. All accounts now have free Twitter analytics – log in and get to it from this url. You get a summary for each month, detailed information about individual tweets, and ability to download your data.
  19. One of my favorite tools – this offers so much for free to help with Twitter. I will show more in-depth in a few moments, but this has the ability to help you understand your users quite a bit, and most of the tools are free.
  20. Sumall is a third-party service that can pull data from a number of different streams. There’s a free version, and for the most part it gives you the same data as you get from Facebook and Twitter analytics. I am including it here because it’s also one of the few services I’ve found that will pull relatively detailed Tumblr analytics for free.
  21. Cyfe is relatively new to me, and I haven’t used it much, but I liked it because you can get up to 5 widgets on the free plan, and you’re not limited to social here – you can also set up Google alerts, web analytics, and email inboxes in the widgets to monitor everything in one place.
  22. Iconosquare is for Instagram analytics. We’re not on Instagram, but we do have an account because I reserved the name just in case. So I’m showing you the dashboard with nothing on it, but it gives you an idea of what types of analytics you would see.
  23. Some scheduling apps also give you analytics. I like to use Buffer, which gives you stats for specific posts you schedule through their service.
  24. And finally, Google analytics is really important because it tells you how many people are coming back to your site from social media. This is a screen shot from the analytics I have hooked up to our blog, I think for a full year, and you can see that a good chunk is coming from Twitter. More than Google, in fact.
  25. Going over some ways you can use analytics in practice. The most important I think is tracking growth and engagement.
  26. Facebook and Twitter analytics give you lots of numbers out of context, and they don’t really mean anything.
  27. Track only the analytics that you actually need and look for changes over a longer period of time.
  28. Remember how I presented that market research about the best times to post? Facebook will also give you an idea of the best time to post, tailored for your specific audience – your followers. This is our graph and you can see that the peak is at 11:00 am. Not during the time window when the market researchers said was the best time. You can also see where your fans are, which can be important if you are concerned with an on-campus community.
  29. Facebook also gives you some really good information about demographics. The gray on this graph represents Facebook as a whole and the blue are our fans. You can see that our audience skews older and more female than the average on Facebook. So my conclusion when looking at this is that we’re not reaching students on Facebook – we are reaching faculty. And that really informs how I post and what I post on the Facebook page.
  30. For understanding your audience on Twitter, I think Followerwonk is the best tool. The first thing you want to do is figure out whether you have an audience on Twitter – so I searched for people with Mizzou in their profiles and turned up over 13,000 results. I think that’s a pretty good audience there.
  31. Followerwonk can also help you understand the best times to post for your particular audience, just like on Facebook. You can even connect your account to Buffer and import the best 3 or 4 times into your posting schedule automatically.
  32. Followerwonk gives you a map of where your followers are located, which I find really useful. You can see that we have a big chunk right in the middle of the country, where you would expect to see them, but we also have a couple of pockets on the east coast and the UK, which I find interesting.
  33. Followerwonk also gives you a word cloud of the words in your followers’ bios – so you can get a clear sense of what they are interested in. A lot of our followers are historians and grad students, and you can really tell here.
  34. Twitter analytics gives you a different version of the location and interests, but I think it’s helpful to see again what topics your followers are interested in and what other accounts they follow.
  35. And finally, social media analytics can help you do social media better. This quote from Samuel Beckett is one of my favorites and it is usually applied to the process of writing, but I think it’s really a useful philosophy for approaching social media. There’s no silver bullet. The 80/20 rule applies here: 20% of your content will provide 80% of your engagement. Which means 80% of your content might flop. It’s important not to get discouraged.
  36. One way you can use Twitter analytics is to look at your high engagement tweets and figure out what they have in common. Engagement rates are going to be really low numbers because they are total engagements divided by the number of impressions. For us, I consider anything over 2% to be a high engagement rate. This is our recipe for success – yours may be a little different.
  37. You can do the same thing in Facebook insights by looking at the posts that get the most reach. If the Facebook detects that there’s some interest in your post, it will start to show it to more people – so reach can be a good indicator of how “good” a post was. These, again, are the recipes I use for what I think will do well on Facebook.
  38. That said, there is not a lot you can do to influence reach on Facebook without paying for it. Before the last algorithm change, posting a photo was a surefire way to reach more people. Now it’s not. I’ve seen various suggestions for how to improve your reach on Facebook, but I have yet to see results.
  39. That has led me to change my priorities and spend less time and effort on Facebook. Even though our local audience is there. Even though I know I’m reaching faculty there. If I can’t reach them reliably, if Facebook is going to position itself as a filter between me and the library’s users, then I’m not going to spend as much time trying to interact with them there. I can’t make a blanket recommendation to walk away from Facebook, but I am finding that it works better for us to concentrate our efforts in other areas. And that’s what I recommend – to use analytics as a guide for decision making in this area. If it’s not helping you meet your overall goals, then find another way to do it. Because social media is a tool – not a goal in itself.