You know what the hardest thing is about marketing? You’re never done. Every single day there is always something else you could do to create some awareness of your brand, enhance your positioning, develop a new channel, or drive some deeper engagement. If you’ve ever heard your CEO say, “You know what – we’ve sold enough this month; take the next couple weeks off,” I strongly encourage you to keep it to yourself, or else every marketer in the country will be competing for your job.
For this reason, marketers must prioritize. The more impact we can squeeze out of the time we have available, the more successful we (and our brands) are. Much of the value of marketing analytics is in helping marketers figure out what works best, so we’re better able to prioritize our efforts. The Category Performance reporting in Social Magnet does exactly this. I’ll show you how.
First, here is what a Category Performance report looks like:
In Social Magnet, you can categorize your emails, tweets, Facebook status updates and LinkedIn posts based on their function or content or anything else you want to compare. In the above example, the categories compared are Newsletter, Webinar Promotions and Blogs and refer to what each message points at or promotes. Categories can also be used to measure different content topics. For example, a TV network might assign each of its different shows or channels a category, in order to see how its social audience responds to each. Or a conference producer could use a category for each show, or each vertical industry its shows serve.
The Category Performance report is designed to show marketers which channels work better for promoting different categories. In the example above, you can see that more Newsletter clicks are coming from the inbox, but that the number of clicks for Webinar Promotions coming from social media approaches what email generates.
But the Category Performance report also allows you to see how the audience of a single channel responds to different categories. Here is another example, showing just how the categories Blogs, Tips and Pass-Along perform on Twitter:
This data is our own, and here are some examples of the tweets in each of the categories listed here:
BLOGS – Directs followers to full-length articles on the blog – new, or from the archives:
From the blog: “Top Email Hacks, Cheats and Shortcuts (and why they don’t work)” rlm.ag/DuJKz
— Real Magnet (@realmagnet) April 10, 2012
TIPS – Used for short content on the blog or Facebook, like Emailioration Monday or Wednesday White Cards:
It’s White Card Wednesday on our Facebook page. This week’s tip is on the Hero Shot. Do you use one? rlm.ag/1ypDb5
— Real Magnet (@realmagnet) April 11, 2012
PASS-ALONG – Points to research or article somewhere else online:
— Real Magnet (@realmagnet) April 12, 2012
In the period covered by this report (fully customizable) you can see how many messages and clicks are in each category. Do a little math and you can determine how many clicks / tweet each category generates, and then do a little more to find out that the Blogs category generates over 30% more clicks / tweet than either the Tips or the Pass-Along category. (At this volume the data is not necessarily conclusive, but it’s a place to start.)
Knowing how many clicks a tweet generates is powerful by itself (and of course Social Magnet provides that). But being able to group messages into a category to see what specific content your Twitter or Facebook or inbox audience responds best to is exactly the kind of data that allows marketers to prioritize, and squeeze more impact out of the same effort. Using this data, a next step would be to tweak Twitter’s content strategy slightly, and tweet links to our blog archives more often since they drive more clicks and merchandise our own content. Play it forward a few months and if this data trend holds, it starts to make the argument for not just tweeting more blog content, but creating more blog content, since Twitter is an effective means of amplifying it.
And that’s what metrics are for, after all – not to show you how you did yesterday, but how to market better today.