Thursday, 30 May 2013

Social media analytics: helping you spy on the competition

'Like' on Facebook
What percentage of people who 'Like' a brand on Facebook may never return to that page?

What's the half-life of a tweet?

What percentage of your fans are likely to see a Facebook post?

What percentage of people are using social networks to waste time?

The answers are:

The stats come from Jeremy Waite, Adobe's head of social strategy for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Jeremy was speaking last week at a social media evening, run by Digital Doughnut in Hoxton.

Levi's and Disney

What does Adobe know about social media? These days Adobe's not just about PDFs and desktop publishing, it's got a social media analytics package to sell, Adobe Social*. It's a high end package, adopted by huge brands like Disney and Levi's to track millions of tweets and Facebook posts so they can fathom out 5 things.

The 5 Ws of social media analytics

  • Who are the most influential people that are talking about your brand?
  • What are they saying?
  • Why are they talking about you?
  • When did these conversations happen?
  • Where were they talking about you?

It's all about knowing your audience. If you know the answers, says Adobe, you can spend quality time engaging with a small, targeted group of people who will influence the masses. And that will save you time and money.

90% engagement, 10% content

Jeremy believes brands should focus 90% of their effort on talking to fans and followers and only 10% of time creating content.
"Far too many brands spend 90% of their time creating great content but only 10% of their time talking and listening to customers," writes Jeremy in his white paper 'The Like Cycle'. (To download the white paper, you have to fill in a form.) See the Like Cycle on YouTube.  

Do you speak their language?

It's important to find out what people are talking about. 
"You need to build your conversation strategy around what your community's saying - not what you think they want to hear," says Jeremy.

Snooping on the competition

A second speaker at the Digital Doughnut event was Jamie Riddell, co-founder of digital marketing consultancy Digital Tomorrow Today. The consultancy's built its own social media analytics tool, Birdsong*, that can spit out reports on your competitors.

Birdsong takes publicly available data from Facebook, Twitter and Klout and produces pretty pie charts and bar charts. The charts summarise. They save you trawling through thousands of tweets, posts and follower profiles.

You can quickly and easily:

  • see what people on Twitter and Facebook are saying about your competitors
  • see your competitors' most popular posts 
  • see what days (and what times of day) your rivals are active
  • see trends in how your followers describe themselves
  • compare the followers of two brands - and see who follows both brands

It's all useful stuff to help you understand and talk to your community better - and ultimately help you win new customers.

Poaching customers in a crisis

Social media analytics can flag up new opportunities.
"Last summer when NatWest had its IT crisis, people rushed to Twitter as they couldn't get through to the bank on the phone. It was a missed opportunity for the other banks - it would have been a great time to approach disgruntled NatWest customers," says Jamie.

*Other social analytics packages are available.

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