Social Media Metrics forResearch Institutions Workbook
Strategic guide to planning a social media campaignStep 1: Determine communication goalsFirst decide what you really want to achieve. Your goal shouldbe a SMART goal: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant,and Time-based.Step 2: AudiencesWho is the target of your communication effort? How finely canyou define the sector? You might have different audiences foreach goal.Step 3: MessagesWhat messages do you want to communicate to your audience?In a social media world, you need to turn this question aroun-das well: What do your audiences want to tell you? What doyou want to hear from your audiences?Step 4: Existing touchpointsWith regard to specific goals, how do you come into contactwith the audiences you have determined? What other waysmight you come into contact with them?Step 5: Which social media tools might help?When considering the touchpoints you have identified, whatsocial media tools might help you enhance that contact, or whattools might allow you to create new touchpoints?Step 6: What will you measure?For each social media tool you have identified, determine whatyou might measure to indicate the level of relationship andhelath of that relationship.
The five levels of relationships in social mediaLevel 1. AwarenessThe first level of relationship with an audience is having thataudience know you exist. Unfortunately, this is the first bigbattle many communication offices have to face. I won’t begoing into how you solve that problem here but there are somemetrics you can find that help identify whether people knowyou exist in the social media space.Example metrics: Web site page viewsLevel 2. AttentionOnce people know you exist, you want them also to listento what you have to say, along with you listening to them ofcourse. In social media that generally requires some deliberateaction on the part of your audience as people generally have toopt in to receive communication from you. If they do sign upto follow you or get information from you some other way, youknow they are at least open to listening to your messages ormoving further along the relationship track. Too often commu-nications offices don’t try to push past this stage in a relation-ship but there is still a long way to go.Example metrics: Time on web site, followers on Twitter, fanson FacebookLevel 3. ParticipationIdeally you want your audiences to be involved in conversationwith and about you, not just listening to what you have to say.Conversations about you are probably more likely in the begin-ning but be open to all kinds and measure what is going on inthose conversations.
Example metrics: Comments on a blog, @replies on Twitter,posts on Facebook wall, re-sharing on Facebook or web sites.Level 4. EngagementNow we are getting to place where you want to be. Engagedaudiences are audiences that are in a mutually beneficial rela-tionship with you. As such, they tend to be willing to actuallytake action on your behalf, as long as you respect that relation-ship and take appropriate actions on their behalf. The specificmetrics you use here will be defined by your individual goalsso it’s hard to give general examples, although there are somecommon signs of engagement.Example metrics: Retweeting, contacting you, completingsurveys, using your hashtags, signing up for your newsletter orpress releasesLevel 5. AdvocationIf you really build a strong, positive relationship you mighthave even created advocates for your organization. Often alum-ni play this role but it is quite possible to create many otheradvocates in the community. Advocates will take action onyour behalf without being asked to. They will speak about youpositively, defend you against detractors, and encourage othersto pay attention to you (to enter a level 2 relationship with you).Note that is also possible for people to be advocating againstyou. They should also be measured and should be a priority foryou to deal with in some form.Example metrics: Initiated conversations about you, encour-agement of others to pay attention, defence of you, other posi-tive comments picked up by content analysis, initiating sharingon Facebook or web sites.