Following a regular measurement and reporting process can help illustrate the impact of a brand/organization’s online presence and lead to content optimizations. Whether it’s campaign-focused reporting or an established monthly/quarterly cadence, here are five tactics for improving the process and final product:
1. Campaign reporting brief
For a specific campaign report, begin by outlining campaign objectives, digital tactics (i.e. social amplification, webpage overlay, paid partnership), timeline and key players. Using the brief to inform the report output ensures it focuses on the right metrics to tell the right story across all campaign elements.
Telling a story with report data is more impactful when you offer the context of benchmarks based on historical data. Instead of saying the campaign resulted in 2,103 new Twitter followers, you can make these results more meaningful by adding that the audience growth was 70 times the typical growth over any other month of the year. Benchmarking also tells a more objective success story than comparing engagement metrics with other brands’ social channels.
3. Tracked links
Using tracked links through Google Analytics can help organize referral traffic data for reporting purposes by segmenting specific traffic sources from the complete dataset. Create tracked links for all digital assets linking back to your site, including display media, paid search ads and sponsored content to analyze how traffic from those sources differ from other visitors. Do visitors from sponsored content pieces stay on the site longer or view more pages than average? Are paid search ads driving new traffic or bringing returning visitors back to the site? What percentage of overall traffic is driven by display media?
4. Reporting ROI
Though still relatively new, the addition of ‘Buy Now’ buttons to Facebook and Twitter will allow brands to report ROI of paid social for new product launches, flash sales and the like, which adds more business-oriented metrics than reach and engagement. Even without the ‘Buy Now’ features, brands can use tracked links in paid social posts to attribute ecommerce sales to various paid social tactics.
5. Implementing optimizations to improve results
Reports are most helpful when they offer insightful analysis and recommendations for reaching goals, content improvements, adjustments in content cadence, paid strategy and the like. Ensuring optimal execution elements are perpetuated and issues are addressed should always be a reporting objective, making content creation, distribution, reporting and optimization cyclical.