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What Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor Taught Me About Social Media Measurement

If you are a serious social marketer, you probably have several go-to tools in your reporting arsenal. But how do you know when to use one report over another?
A good friend of mine always says that the only thing separating a professional from an amateur is the right tool for the job. Or in other words, anything is possible if you are properly equipped for the task at hand. As a new home-owner, I’m constantly reminding my wife of this simple idea. The right tool can make the most difficult job easy, and even more important it can save you time. Go ahead, insert your best Tim “The Toolman” Taylor grunt.

If you are like most marketers, the problem of selecting the right measurement tool is likely getting even more complicated as you expand your efforts to more and more social networks. Not to mention that with dozens, or even hundreds, of individual profiles on several networks, it is becoming more complex and painful than ever to measure your brand.

Cross-Channel vs. Channel-Specific Measurement

Understanding which tool is best for your specific social measurement job is important. As my colleague Lindzee pointed out recently, you’re probably continually asking yourself questions like:

  • Which channels are resonating the most with my community?
  • Which one is giving me the maximum results for the most minimal amount of effort?
  • Which types of content should I use for my next campaign?
  • How is my brand performing on social media?
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Measurement relies on an understanding of when each tool or metric is valuable.

You have access to the data that can help you answer these questions, but finding the answers means navigating your tool box. To answer the above questions you need to understand the purpose and benefits of both cross-channel and channel-specific measurement tools.

Different Tools for Different Jobs

The goal of cross-channel measurement is to understand and compare the performance of your brand across all of your social networks. Your brand is active on multiple networks and your campaigns and content programs are designed to be cross-channel. But, are you also measuring cross-channel? By standardizing the way you measure performance across networks, you’ll be better equipped to make informed, strategic decisions.

Cross-Channel Measurement

A good cross-channel measurement solution will give you aggregated insights into key performance indicators (KPIs) like:

1. Audience growth over time across all channels

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The audience growth chart from Simply Measured’s Cross-Channel Social Performance Report.

2. Engagement across all channels

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Seeing peaks and valleys from all your social networks in concert allows you to fully understand the impact of your tactics.

3. Content type performance across all channels

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Analyzing engagement by post type allows you to get a holistic view of content that works across all channels.

Single-Channel Measurement

While cross-channel measurement is great for making “big picture” strategic decisions, a channel-specific report is your tool for making tactical decisions and optimization adjustments within a specific social media network. A single-channel report should dive deep into your KPIs and reveal:

1. Content resonating on specific channels

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By analyzing individual networks, you can drill into specific performance metrics for each channel.

2.Time of day/week on each channel

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Channel-specific time of day/week analysis gives you audience insight you can’t find on a broader scale.

3. The audience engaging with your brand on each channel

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By analyzing specific channels, you can dig deeper into the ways your audience interacts with your brand in different places.

How To Get Started

At Simply Measured, our goal is to give you a tool box that would make Tim Taylor jealous (more power, anyone?) by providing complete measurement reports that help you understand and compare the performance of your brand, both within a specific channel and across all of your social networks.

Want to learn more about adding strategic cross-channel measurement to your social media marketing strategy? Download our new whitepaper The Five Essentials of Cross-Channel Social Media Measurement today.

Shaun Kehrberg

I've lived in the greater Seattle area my entire life and have ZERO plans to ever move. Technology, marketing, and sports (Seahawks!) are my passions.

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