Just as it does with campaign planning and optimization, Social Media Analytics plays an important part in the long game of a business — not just how a recent campaign performed, but what can be learned from it to improve the next one. And the one after that.
By seriously examining the results of various campaigns, patterns emerge. Mistakes can be avoided and successes turned all the way up. So in thinking about measuring a campaign, think of it as an information asset. The next time you run a campaign, you’ll have so much more to work with. That’s the big picture. Now let’s take a look at the process of measuring a single campaign with Social Media Analytics.
Measuring Campaign Results with Social Media Analytics
One thing all campaigns have in common is that they end. A campaign is inherently a special effort with concentrated resources and a timeline. It could last two weeks or two months, but when a campaign ends it’s time to ask yourself, ‘how did we do?” and, perhaps more importantly, “what did we learn?”
Depending on your business, some of the results will be readily apparent. Whether it’s product sold, stock market results or awareness of your cause, there will be some tangible outcome that is pretty much self evident.
Brand Perception Reality Check
Positive brand perception is something all marketers track, and this is something Social Media Analytics is particularly good at. Way beyond ‘how many did we reach?’ are questions like ‘do people trust us?’, ‘will people go out of their way to engage with our brand?’. The answers to these more qualitative questions are easily found by analyzing social media data. And what people think of your brand, as measured before, during and after your campaign, is virtually priceless information when it’s time for the next campaign.
This information has multiple layers. It’s not just a matter of measuring positive or negative sentiment; you find out why sentiment is moving in one direction or the other. Close examination of the conversation can reveal and quantify attributes of the campaign that people liked, resulting in an increase in trust and purchase intent, as well as aspects that worked against your campaign goal.
As an example, let’s say Samsung is releasing the Galaxy Note 11 and the campaign is focused on a 3D video camera that can only work by having multiple lenses and a powerful processor…more processing power than anything Apple is offering. It’s only after the campaign has ended that Social Media Analytics delivers a tough reality check. There was obviously a great deal of discussion about the new 3D feature, but intent to buy was surprisingly low. It wasn’t the price. It wasn’t the trustworthiness of the Samsung brand or anything like that. People didn’t understand what a 3D video camera can do.
It’s a valuable learning opportunity. The marketing team was so close to the product they neglected it’s primary selling point. The campaign missed because the primary benefit was simply not understood. They buried the lede. Why should I buy this new camera again? What’s 3D video exactly?
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There are many excellent ways to evaluate a campaign. Bottom line performance numbers are the place to start. A survey of your partners on the front line, such as distributors and retailers, is very effective. But there is nothing quite like getting into the mind of a consumer and getting a genuine answer to the question…. “How did we do?”
The Power of Social Media Analytics
It’s not magic, or a silver bullet, or the holy grail, but Social Media Analytics is one of the reasons it’s such a great time to be a marketer. There are more opportunities and more sophisticated tools than ever. In fact, sometimes it’s hard to stay on top of it all. But wherever brands want to build a powerful and useful relationship with their consumers, Social Media Analytics is likely to be involved.
There’s no other way to get multiple layers of data like this so important in driving your next campaign. Example: out of the universe of people exposed to the campaign, which group had the most positive response? What defines them? Was this ‘most positive’ group characterized by simple demographics or by something more difficult to uncover, such as certain affinities or preferences not directly related to your brand or your campaign. And within this group that had highly favorable sentiment about your campaign, what best identifies people with the highest intent to purchase?
Being able to pinpoint consumers at this level is what Social Media Analytics is for. It give marketers a truly high powered microscope to examine consumer behavior and sentiment about your campaigns.
In his book on the subject, “The Seven Layers of Social Media” G.F. Khan described social media analytics as “the art and science of extracting valuable hidden insights from vast amounts of semistructured and unstructured social media data to enable informed and insightful decision making”. A great example is building your data assets around campaign measurement with Social Media Analytics. Business will never be the same.
Download the full guide: The Modern Guide to Planning, Optimizing and Measuring Campaign Performance