March 27, 2015

Evaluating Facebook Analytics

Analytics are an extremely important tool in social media marketing.  The data is like a road map.  Social media professionals use analytics to know where to focus their efforts.  You can capitalize on highpoints or direct attention to where you see lulls or gaps in the numbers.  Basically, “analytics give you the data you need to improve your social media engagement, make marketing decisions and tie social media to your bottom line.” (Social Media Examiner) For this week’s assignment, I will be analyzing XYZ Company’s Facebook page data to provide feedback on their strategy and suggestions for improvement.

Background

XYZ Company is a heating and cooling company (HVAC) in Western Massachusetts.  They provide installation, maintenance and repair of residential HVAC units.  In addition to this Facebook page, XYZ Company has a website, Twitter account, Yelp page and Google+ page.  This is a small family business and Facebook is their primary advertising channel although they do some offline marketing as well.

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Synopsis

XYZ Company’s Facebook Page currently has 167 likes and they are, on average, creating one to two posts a week.  All of their posts have been boosted to increase the likelihood of their audience seeing their post.  While 58% of their page likes have come from women, they receive the most engagement from men between the ages of 35-54.

Key Findings

The biggest indicator of the XYZ data is their paid posts and ads are working.  During the week of 3/11-3/17, all of their stats had improved or increased.  Their best results are directly correlated with paid reach, paid likes and paid ads.  Any spikes seen in their data are due to the boosting of a post.  XYZ’s numbers would be significantly lower if they relied entirely on organic means.  This is probably a result of Facebook’s new algorithms and businesses need to adjust accordingly if they want their content to reach their audience.

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The data also shows us when is the best time for XYZ to post on Facebook.  Under the post tab, we can view when their content receives the most eyeballs.  Saturday through Monday are best days while the peak hours are 8pm and 9pm.  We can go back through the weeks to determine if this is a pattern.  If it is, we can schedule our posts to accommodate those peak days and times. My first suggestion would be to create an editorial calendar and schedule your most important posts during those peaks.

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Other Suggestions for Improvement

My main recommendation for XYZ is to post more often.  In an article on social media frequency from Buffer.com, “As a general rule, Socialbakers found that posting once per week on Facebook was so low as to lose connection with your audience.”  I would recommend increasing your sharing to one post a day, which is the average number of posts from top brands in the United States.  Posting on a more regular basis will increase fan engagement!  If your fans are liking, commenting and sharing your posts, they will see your posts more often!

With six more posts to write a week, my next recommendation would be to diversify your content.  XYZ fans don’t want to hear only about thermostats, heat pumps and mini splits.  They want to be engaged, entertained and informed.  Include questions to which they can respond, photos, and introduce humor into your lineup. There should be a nice balance on your page between sharing with your fans and listening to your fans.

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Next, speak to your target audience.  If men between the ages of 35 and 54 are your most engaged demographic, then you should start creating content specifically for them.  Perhaps future campaigns or posts could include a series of how to videos, tips for maintaining their HVAC system during winter or summer months, humorous photos or memes appropriate for your target demo, or a free consultation/inspection offer.  Post photos of nightmare hvac situations and start a “We Can Fix It” or a “We Can Handle It” campaign.  Create a hashtag so posts can be shared on Twitter or use popular HVAC hashtags like #hvac, #hvachacks, and #airconditioning.

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Incorporate Other Channels

To further boost results, incorporate other online and offline channels.  Cross promote your other social media channels on your Facebook page.  Share good reviews from Yelp or share retweets from Twitter.  Another recommendation would be to create a Pinterest page.  Pinterest is where everyone goes for do it yourself projects or to get ideas for home improvement.  With a board on Pinterest, you can position yourself as the HVAC expert and provide excellent tips to fans while increasing your following.

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Be sure that your offline marketing is also driving traffic to social media or your website.  Add “Like Us on Facebook” graphics to direct mail pieces, add social icons to emails, and add follow us buttons to your website.  Be sure to include links to your website in all your social posts and consider installing an appointment scheduler on your website.