How to use social media analytics – Facebook Insights
Most businesses know to use Google Analytics, leads and sales figures to help measure the effectiveness of marketing and ROI. However, social media analytics and insights are often downplayed or even completely overlooked by businesses.
Social insights can help you understand your audience and how they consume your content by showing how posts have performed, who they’ve been seen by, how they’ve been found and how they’ve been engaged with, to name but a few.
Being able to quickly see trends in the effectiveness of the types of content you have shared is incredibly valuable to businesses, especially Marketing Teams. Being able to identify what topics, times, CTAs and media types are proving most effective, too, is great for streamlining your content marketing strategy.
They are easier to understand than Google Analytics, clearly show what content you share is more effective and often have reporting features should you wish to export stats. Did we also mention that they’re free? Sound good, right? All that’s left is to understand how to use them.
So, let’s get started.
First up in our quest to demystify social insights to help advance your content marketing strategy and plan your next step, is Facebook.
Facebook Insights provides analytics for your Facebook Page. You can dig pretty deep into the data here and depending on what your measurables are, the stats that are most important to you may vary.
The same first step applies for all, though, which is to click on ‘Insights’ at the top of your Facebook Page to access it. Check.
Though there are more, we’ve put together our top 5 sections to look at here to begin using and interpreting Facebook Insights.
The first section is the ‘Overview’ of your stats and if you don’t look at anything else, this is the section you want to use.
As it says on the tin, it is an overview of the key data on your Facebook Page. This is also the section where you can export data for reporting or for client purposes.
You can filter the timescale but only up until the past 28 days. Another slight annoyance is that you can only see a percentage change in the figures compared to the same period previous and you can’t compare data as clearly or as flexibly as you can on Google Analytics (if you’re reading this Zuckerburg, please take note).
Despite that, within the ‘Overview’ section you can see a summary of your page such as page likes, engagement, views and actions, which is ideal for monitoring its overall success. If you click on the specific stats, it skips to the relevant section where you can delve deeper (and filter for greater periods than just the past 28 days) too (if you’re still reading Zuckerberg, okay, so maybe we can let you off).
Further down you can view the stats for your individual posts laid out in a table to make it nice and easy to compare. This is a great way of getting a snapshot view of how your content is faring and to recognise trends in what is, or isn’t, being engaged with.
Here you can also view ‘Pages to watch’ which relates to competitors and/or likeminded businesses. This is a good way of seeing where you are positioned within your area or industry and to use as a benchmark for targets.
This section is a great indicator of the types of content people are interested in and is the area you want to focus on if you’re wanting to review and improve your content strategy on Facebook.
You can see the engagement levels of your posts comparatively, which helps identify any trends between what your audience finds engaging and what they don’t.
As mentioned above, this can be viewed in the ‘Overview’ section, but the best place to view this in depth is within this ‘Posts’ section.
‘Post types’ at the top of this section is also one to watch. Here, reach and engagement is shown depending on the types of content you have posted (i.e video, photo or link). The content type gaining the most engagement from your audience is probably the content type you should do more of.
Looking at your content output in this section comparatively, can shape your content marketing moving forward.
For example, if posts with video content and also those focussed on ‘top tips’ are getting more engagement than others, then why not produce ‘top tips’ videos?
This is a great measure of how far your content is reaching. If you’re focussed on brand awareness and reaching new audiences on social, then this is a great stat for you to monitor.
The higher the reach, the more your content was shared and is therefore considered interesting and/or useful (unless it’s being shared for controversial reasons!)
You can custom the timeframe for looking at this data which is great for seeing if your content output is improving or not over a specific period.
You can track the likes on all posts as well as your whole Page likes. To see your post likes (or ‘Reactions’), it’s best to view the stats on the ‘Overview’ or ‘Posts’ page in the section where your posts are broken down to show reach and engagement.
To keep track of your page likes, however, the ‘Likes’ Section is best. Here you can see your page likes across certain periods. If you notice that your page likes are increasing over time, then you’re probably on the right track.
However, if they are decreasing or perhaps not increasing as you’d planned, it may be worth looking into gaining new likes and/or followers or looking into the content you are sharing. If you’re noticing a drop-off, your audience isn’t getting what they want.
Consider the types on content you’re sharing, the format, the times and the quantity of posts you’re putting out. Just one of these things not being right can scare off your audience.
Tip: Take your ‘Followers’ into account when reviewing your likes. Whether or not these are mostly nosey competitors keeping an eye on what you’re doing or genuine customers, it’s a good indicator that what you’re sharing is being followed and for a reason.
The ‘People’ tab shows you the breakdown of your audience demographic. Stats look at gender, age and location. You can filter this for people who saw your post, your followers or people reached.
You can use these figures to better understand who is seeing and reacting to your content. Are you gaining interest from your target market? Could there perhaps be a whole new customer persona that you hadn’t previously considered?
Next up on our whistle-stop tour of social media insights is Twitter Analytics…
If you still have questions, would like further training into the dark arts of analytics or would just rather have someone do it for you, then please contact on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0115 88 00 181.
Psssst. If you liked this, you might also like our post on “6 ways to use Google Analytics to track results“.