Social Media is a beast. Am I right? And don’t even get me started on Social Media Analytics. One day the world is reeling about one service, one hot new tool, and just when you think you’ve got it… you wake up to something harder, better, faster, stronger. I’ve found it to be essential that when you’re managing social aspects of your band/label or company you learn to love the hunt for new services and go with the flow.
So now that you’ve got me started… I wanted to take this post to tout a few of my fave social media analytics sites that have a FREE or small membership fee version that is useful for tracking The Orchard’s social media activity. I know you can piecemeal a bunch of different tools together but I try to keep as much under one (or two) umbrella(s) as I can, though I do manage our Twitter activity and Facebook activity separately. I’d also love to hear your thoughts and suggestions on how you analyze your social media profiles and activity, so if you have any suggestions, hit me up in the comments!
I don’t use Twitter direct anymore. I only use Hootsuite, main reasons being timed tweets and analytics. We usually have a large amount of news that we want to blast out to the world, so instead of hitting you all at once, I can space them out throughout the day. Alternatively, if I have a busy day, I can schedule as many as I like to post throughout the day and then let ‘em fly! Their analytics tool is robust and since we fork over the minimal monthly fee for their Pro Package ($5.99), I can customize what reports we generate so only the Orchard-applicable info is included. I do gather Facebook analytics with Hootsuite in addition to Twitter because it pulls directly from Facebook Insights (it’s nice to have it all in one analytics report). That said, I don’t publish actual Facebook activity using Hootsuite because you cannot tag your posts, which is mega important for us.
Great potential here. You can access daily follower increases, top tweets and top influential followers. You can schedule tweets here, too. They’re still hammering out custom date range counts, which is very valuable to me and this is one of the main reasons I haven’t fully committed to Crowdbooster, yet. It’s also difficult to dig deep into each stat they report and break it down further. I’ve emailed with the CEO and he’s assured me they are working on fixing the date range issue (I appreciated the quick feedback). I like these guys, not just for their platform that seems to keep getting better, but especially for their customer service!
Light-hearted company voice (their tag line is: In ur Tweets, Graphin’ Your Stats!) and accuracy take lead over fancy interface, but this service delivers stats impressively and that may be enough. If you’re looking to identify when you’re tweeting most (density), who you interact with most, and which interface you’re using most, TweetStats is great. If you catch them on a busy time of day, it could take up to 5 minutes or so to load, but it’s worth the wait. I have to admit, I prefer the more user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing dashboards of other services but still appreciate these guys for cutting through all the b.s. and delivering solid stats.
Question for Readers: I’m still looking for the most accurate RT count per month (not total retweets)! I know I can manually count RTs but have you heard of anything less labor intensive?
Well, to be honest, I really don’t dig Facebook Insights. Luckily, I’m only tracking very basic analytics such as likes/post reach/people talking about this etc., which I can get through Hootsuite and track together with my Twitter analytics there. There are also quite a few hoops you have to go through to get data from a certain date range (for some stats you want within a defined time period, you have to download the spreadsheet then sift through that, instead of just getting it straight from the Insights dashboard). That said, I’m pretty much 100% Facebook when it comes to actually posting, capturing data and interacting socially.
I’m waiting for the day that my wildest social media dreams are met with a full, comprehensive dashboard that handles all my social media profiles. Yes, yes… there are websites that can put all of your social profiles in one place to view (Cyfe for instance), however, I have not found that any are more functional, efficient or accurate than using separate services or tools to analyze each.
Thanks to these products for helping me along… I’m looking forward to seeing who beats out who amongst the multitude of services — new and not-as-new — that offer social media analytics. I’ve checked out the following and for different reasons, they haven’t met all of my needs but I will keep them on my list to “keep an eye on:” PeopleBrowsr, Twenty Feet, SocialBro.