Mr. Post Man, Look and See
This Tax Season, There’s One Audit You Should Welcome: How a Social Media Audit Can Change Your Game
By Courtney S. Dade, CEO, Chief Strategist, CSD Marketing and Consulting, LLC
Wait a minute. Mr. Post Man, or Ms. Post Woman, or Neutral Post Person – now that you’ve posted your content on your Social Media channels, have you looked to see whether it’s gained traction, engaged leads, led to sales conversions, worth the time and resource you’ve invested in to create and publish it? If you’re pushing content out there and passively waiting for tangible results to fall in your lap, you could be taking a long walk down Disappointment Drive.
Because, regardless of what you intended, every bit of content you push on social media is…
- helping to create your brand identity;
- attracting or scaring away new customers; and
- building report trust and credibility with existing customers
…unless, of course, no-one’s paying attention.
So, inquiring minds want to know how do you as a business get the most out of social media marketing if you don’t know what’s working and what’s failing?
Why You Should Care About Social Media
Eight years ago Yahoo Business posted an article about the business benefits of social media that still holds true today:
- Customer Service. Social media is a great place for customers to interact with you and allows you to develop an after-sales relationship with your customers, reply to queries, questions, and complaints quickly.
- Relationships. Social media is a great community building tool and offers businesses an opportunity to increase customer loyalty.
- Traffic. Social media is an important tool for driving traffic if you are creating engaging content that makes people want to see more.
- Marketing. Social media marketing campaigns can be very cost-effective, and a great source for earned content if a great deal or opportunity is shared, resulting in more names in your database, increased sales, and increased brand awareness.
Still unconvinced? Let me dazzle you with some statistics from Statista Research and Analysis, a German company specializing in market and consumer data, that paints a picture of just how important social media is for small businesses today.
- 12% of U.S. internet users spend more than 4 hours per day on social networks.
- 42% of U.S. adults socialized virtually during the coronavirus outbreak.
- The most popular social network worldwide by the number of users is Facebook.
- There are 190 million Facebook users in the U.S., projected to increase to 235 million in 2025.
- U.S. adults spend 38 minutes daily on Facebook.
- There are 107.2 million Instagram users in the U.S., roughly a third of which are aged 25 to 34.
- The social media platform with the highest reach among Gen Z and Millennial internet users in the U.S. in 2019 was YouTube.
It is highly likely that at least some portion or segment of your current or desired customers are using Social Media. Therefore, you should be using it as well. But do you know whether you are using this powerful tool effectively?
This Tax Season, There’s One Audit You Should Welcome
It’s a given that a significant percentage of customers discover specific companies through social media. So maybe it’s time you considered conducting a social media audit. This is the process of reviewing your business’ metrics to assess growth, opportunities and what can be done to improve how you post and engage on all your social media accounts—your social presence.
Unlike the dreaded IRS audit, this audit produces results that you can use to devise a plan of action to improve your business. In other words, the results are not punitive. If you can find opportunities for refinement or improvement, that’s great news. Performing a social media audit is particularly helpful to ecommerce businesses, as it helps them stay on top of their online presence. You can analyze and review three main factors of your social media marketing:
- What strategy is working and giving you the results you desire?
- What isn’t working and is repeatedly failing to give good returns?
What can be done to achieve better results on your chosen social media platforms?
Warning: Side Bar
Have you ever heard of the 80/20 rule? Once upon a time there was an Italian economist named Vilfredo Pareto who, in about 1896, observed something of interest about the connection between the population and wealth. He noticed that 80% of Italy’s land was owned by 20% of the population. Upon further research, he found a similar distribution applied to a variety of other countries. Well, in 1941, a management consultant and quality management guru named Joseph M. Juran began to apply “the Pareto Principle” to quality issues. For example, 80% of a problem is caused by 20% of the causes, 80% of errors and crashes in a software system can eliminated by fixing the top 20% of the most-reported bugs, 80% of your sales come from 20% of your customers, and so on. The Pareto Principle is also called the 80/20 rule, the law of the vital few, or the principle of factor sparsity.
Remember that next time you’re arm-chair quarterbacking a game of Jeopardy.
But if 80% of your results really do come from 20% of your actions, when applying this principle to social media marketing, these actions could be those of your prospects, your customers, or your own. So your social media audit, ideally, will help you find out what actions are in the critical 20%, and lets you focus your efforts in the right direction. Do we really have time to waste on activities that don’t add value?
What’s in a Social Media Audit and How to Conduct It
A Social Media Audit helps you answer critical questions about your strategy and how you’ve implemented it, so that you can continuously improve. Even a small finding can help you sharpen your game, resulting in improved outcomes.
Award-winning Social Media Management Company Lyfe Marketing suggests, “Your social media audit should efficiently help you find the answers for the right questions, so that you’re constantly improving.” Some examples?
- How is your performance and what you can do to improve it?
- Is your content focused in the right direction and can it do better?
- Do your goals match your core marketing strategy?
- Is your team collaborating well?
- Are you and your team effectively utilizing all our social media channels?
- What are people saying about your brand?
- Are your competitors using similar tactics or are they doing something better?
- Are you able to meet your KPIs with each of your channels?”
It’s not just about creating effective content. It’s also issues like where you’re placing your content across Social Media channels, what hashtags you’re using, the times you’re scheduling your posts, and your engagement rate.
Hootsuite, a Social Media management platform, recommends a 10-step process:
|1.||Track down all your social media accounts.|
|2.||Make sure each account is complete and on brand.|
|3.||Identify your best posts.|
|4.||Evaluate channel performance.|
|5.||Track results over time.|
|6.||Calculate your return on investment.|
|7.||Understand the audience for each Social Media channel.|
|8.||Decide which channels are right for you.|
|9.||Standardize channel ownership and passwords.|
|10.||Do it all again. (This is not a one-and-done activity.)|
Social Media has become a staple in modern-day marketing strategy, particularly for small business. Using it effectively can have real impact on business outcomes and brand identity. Therefore, not only should you develop a specific Social Media Strategy, but you should regularly conduct a Social Media Audit to ensure you are getting the most from this important asset.
Don’t let it overwhelm you. CSD Marketing and Consulting can support you in conducting a Social Media Audit, and we can even help you develop a comprehensive marketing plan that includes a Social Media Strategy and Audit. The result will be a specific action plan that is customized to align with your business goals and brand. Don’t delay. Contact us today for a consultation.
In the meantime, here’s the original Mr. Post Man, the debut single by the Marvelettes in 1961 for the Tamla (early Motown) label, the first Motown song to reach the number one position on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart. It was later covered by the Beatles in 1962, and by the Carpenters in 1975, when it reached number 1 on the pop chart again.