4 Ways That Data Can Make You A Better Social Media Marketer

How can marketers stand out from the crowd in a competitive job market? By being data-savvy, of course.

Marketing is a mixture of art and science. As a social media marketer, you need to engage the right side of your brain in thinking of creative ideas, designing visuals, writing copy; but you also need to use the analytical and strategic left side.

This list breaks down 4 reasons why you should invest your time in learning more about social media data and how you can use it to excel in your marketing career. 

Social Media Data | Hippo

1. Eliminate your boss' unfounded opinion

Everyone has a hippo in their office. HI.P.P.O stands for highest paid person's opinion. Usually a senior member of the team, it's the colleague who leads the team in the wrong direction, based on total guesswork of what they think will work. 

Data eliminates opinion. It takes ego and seniority away from the table, because your colleagues can't argue with data. Even if you are the most junior person in the team, if you can present data on why an idea will work then you will be valued and listened to. 

One opinion a lot of social media marketers come up against from their team is that social media "just isn't worth the hassle". If you're struggling to get buy-in from management, data can help convince them to invest more in social media. Show them the customer interactions you're having on social media and the sales you're driving, then they'll be more likely to pay attention.

Social Media Data | Pumpkin

2. Make smarter decisions

How can you know what's working with your social media? And what's not working?

There are a heap of metrics to be looking at to decide which social activity is working well for your business (meaning you should repeat it) and which isn't working so well (time to refine it). 

These metrics can be split into two groups, vanity metrics and actionable metrics. Both are useful but for different reasons. 

Vanity metrics are the face value data points which makes it look like your brand is doing well on social: likes, comments, and follower numbers. They're useful to analyse for social proofing and brand awareness, but they don’t directly correlate to business goals such as making sales.

Actionable metrics are the data points that do contribute towards your business goals, such as how much traffic social media is generating for your website and the actions social media users take when they reach your site. You can monitor this data by using Google Analytics and tracking all of the links you post to social media using Campaign URL Builder. It will give you a much deeper insight into how social media is contributing to your business and therefore allow you to make smarter decisions about what to do and not do moving forward. 

Social Media Data | Your Customer

3. Get to know your customers

Social media data can give you a unique insight into your customer. It’s the most immediate way to talk to your audience (as a group or one-on-one), to get their feedback, and to run surveys and polls. Plus, with the amount of data that your customer is sharing about themselves online, social media is like the cheapest focus group your business could run.

If you're not speaking with your customers regularly, it can be easy to lose touch with who they are and what they want. As the social media manager, you'll likely be in the best position to analyse your customer's needs as you answer their comments and queries day in and day out. When someone on your team is making a business decision that you think your customers will react badly to, use social media data to demonstrate why - show them some recent customer comments and a brand sentiment analysis. 

If your business is geolocated (such as a shop or an event) and you want to see what your customers are sharing, take a look at One Million Tweet Map. This is a live feed showing the last million tweets sent around the world. Anyone who has a public profile will be visible on the map and you can zoom in on your location to see all of the recent tweets. 

Social Media Data | Influencer Marketing

4. Save your business money

Social media data can save your company money - or at least make sure you’re not wasting it on pointless activity. 

Imagine you could prove that online marketing has a better return on investment than all of the money you're pumping into old hat marketing tactics. You'll definitely be the favourite for a promotion if you can show that social media adverts are acquiring customers at a cost per click of a few pennies, when thousands is being spent on print marketing which you can't measure the effectiveness of. 

When running any kind of paid advertising on social media, you should always A/B test the advert's copy and content to see which version resonates most with your audience. Do videos capture your audience's attention more than images? Does including a question in your copy encourage more people to comment on the post? Do emojis help to convert your buyers? Change one variable at a time so that you can accurately determine the answer to these questions and get the most for your money. 

If you’re looking into using influencer marketing for your business (which has a reputation for being costly and difficult to measure) conduct thorough research into the influencer's data to ensure it's a good fit. Look at how many followers they have, what their engagement rate is per post, and how well their sponsored posts have met brand objectives in the past. 

Social Media Data | Marketing

Want to learn more about getting the most out of data and building your business' online presence? Book onto a group or one-on-one social media training session. Get in touch to find out more.