Whether it’s a personal brand, a larger company, or an organization, there’s nothing as satisfying as seeing likes and comments rack up on your social media post. But it’s not just good for your brand’s ego. Social media engagement is the best way to measure a number of interactions people are having with your accounts. This can be tallied based on likes, comments, shares, retweets, and replies, allowing you to gauge the popularity of a post, and even the success of a campaign.
Why Does It Matter for Your Business?
Seeing engagement on any social media platform is crucial. For marketers and brands, it allows the best way to measure how their posts are performing; within their own platforms as well as against competitors’ posts. If likes and comments for certain content perform better, this allows a company to understand what their audience responds to and keep content consistent to drive the same conversation and intrigue.
Also, it’s a sign that prospective customers are aware of the business, brand, and company. Using the right hashtags, seeing what people are saying, and how many people are reacting to your post and following you is a great way to gauge how the business is growing; especially if you’re a new company.
How to Measure Social Media Engagement
Measuring engagement (and the ways to do it) will differ based on the platform you’re active on. While the concept is the same, every social platform allows you to see this engagement in different ways – some providing more thoughtful analytics than others.
Facebook is all about likes and comments, but inspiring your followers to share your content is the easiest way to get your stuff seen. It’s not surprising that the most shared links and images also tend to be the ones with the most engagement, as well.
While tallying your likes manually is possible, yet time-consuming, Facebook does provide an Insights section for your company or brand page. This shows a weekly page summary, including page views, followers, reach and engagements of your posts. The best way to track engagement to success in your campaign is to compare engagement week to week and see if any growth is being seen – or if there is a certain post that really captured user attention. To compare with your competitors, there are plenty of tools, with Fanpage Karma being an easy example of a free side-by-side comparison that shows how well you’re performing against similar brands.
Engagement on Twitter is defined by replies, retweets, and likes — but clicking the small bar graph icon to the right of your status will reveal additional impressions, as well. Twitter’s Analytics section will also pull this data for your entire profile. While your likes and retweets will correlate to your followers, the right hashtags, tagging a profile user or sharing a link from another user can affect who sees your posts. Again, this level of interactions brings more visibility, which leads to more impressions and a better likelihood of engagement.
While Instagram is known for liking and commenting as the most well-known ways of engaging with other users, relevant hashtags ensure your posts are seen and searched by a larger audience. Instagram does provide clear analytics and data for users with a Business profile, yet for those with a personal brand, additionals apps such as Followers+ do provide individual post impressions and averages overall profile engagement for casual users to see and analyze.
Analytics appear as a tab option for any LinkedIn company profile page. Your company’s analytics page features overall impressions, clicks, interactions and an engagement percentage. It also includes total impressions and reach from your followers, and even pulls career demographic sectors such as entry-level, senior staff, management, director, and owners so you understand the type of professionals interacting with your page.
How to Manage Everything?
Social media management can be tricky for your company, business or agency; especially if you’re active on several networks and platforms. Each site provides their own analytics, but many platform solutions are available to those who want to streamline or see a consolidated analysis of all your platforms together. Some include:
A clean user-interface with a strong mobile app for scheduling and analytics on the go, Buffer is a good choice for brands, companies or agencies who don’t want to pay a premium price for social management.
Definitely the most expensive than many on the market, but depending on your budget and investment into social, their software could pay off well. On an enterprise level, Hootsuite’s well known for their deep listening technology, meaning your brand mentions across the internet — not just on social — can be tracked and calculated. This means the ability to craft well-articulated reports then extend above and beyond just likes and comments.
SproutSocial provides lots of similar features to Buffer and Hootsuite, but the big feature is its emphasis on communication. While tracking your engagement is important, a management system that puts your messaging across your social platforms into one inbox not only makes it easy to measure impressions but also to create new ones.
Understanding how to track engagement and metrics will bring you one step closer to understanding how your customers react and interact with your brand. While likes, comments, and followers are great for growth, make sure you’re not undermining your brand image for what you think will drive engagement. Your content should be balanced in your company’s tone, language and aesthetic, while at the same time conjuring ways to interest your followers. Keep your content fun, consistent and on message and you’re bound to see engagement from your current followers, prospective customers, or even contemporaries in your business and industry.