Does Social Media Really Matter To Every Company?
We live in a world these days where most companies are focused on increasing their Twitter and Facebook followers. While having meaningful social media goals is a great tactic for some, not all organizations are built to be socially awesome, or to grow conversions through social media.
(This images is by Alexander van Dijk [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons - Also, David Armano at http://darmano.typepad.com/)
However, if a company is tracking the right data, they can continuously increase their Return on Investment (ROI) of their business. If they are a Business-to-Business (B2B) organization and people mostly come to their website just to look at the services that they offer, their website needs to be more like a publisher’s site. Tracking the quality data points on the site will help to increase their conversions and leads. The quality data points that would be needed to pull can come from a tool as simple as Google Analytics.
The Real Factor: Time is of the Essence
Why does anyone really ever look anything up on the internet? They need a question answered. They need information. Someone comes to your site for a reason. They need information. What is key for you is to figure out what information they are looking for. Using simple metrics and data points from Google Analytics can help you to achieve this. While most people simply look at the average visit duration for their overall sites, it is very important to break this down even further. You can look into the average time on page for each piece of content posted. Pages or articles that seem to have longer page views are great indicators of information that your potential conversions are interested in. While social media is a great way to enhance brand awareness, it is not necessarily the best way to get basic information across to your consumers. If someone is looking to see your basic business hours or address, your Twitter feed is not going to be useful. It is not easy to measure the impact of social media activity, but with basic metrics, you can easily see the impact of your website activity to learn what it most important to the potential business that uses your website.
The Running Battle: Mobile vs. Desktop
As our world becomes more and more mobile, it is key to make sure you know where your page views are coming from. Mobile optimized websites are key for any organization, but if you learn that 90% of your visitors are using a desktop computer to access your site, then why spend 75% of your resources working on a mobile site? While I agree that it’s highly unlikely for 90% of website traffic to come from a desktop, there are likely many B2B business relationships where people are looking at their clients’ websites from their office at a computer. If you know exactly where your potential leads are coming from, it helps you to learn a little bit about the demographic of the people interested in your business.
This basic information from Google Analytics can give you insight to continuously improve your sites and learn what you need to do to increase engagement with site visitors. The visitor flow can also help you to see what information is more is receiving more traffic. Overall comparisons can help you to make some initial determinations about which channels are most effective, and which ones offer the best return on investment.
The Beauty of Content Experimentation
Still not sure why people are spending more time on certain pages on your site? Play around with a few hypotheses. Maybe it’s because you have a video on the page and it engages the visitor for a longer period of time. Maybe it’s because the information on the posted article is peaks their interest more . Either way, using simple metrics will help you see if a page with video is more interesting to your visitors. If you find that it is, then maybe that means that you should start producing more videos with information on how your business works. You can post some more videos and see if they get a higher number of hits too. If not, then you can go back to the analytics and see if there was another factor that was driving the traffic. Play around with it. Find what works best for you, because no two organizations work in the same way or have the exact same clientele. Whatever it is that you find, it is important to monitor the right metrics and continuously use them to improve your business. Social media might be what’s “hot” right now, but it’s not the easiest of activity to track. A leading source on advice and insight on digital marketing and ecommerce, Econsultancy has stated that while 82% of people believe that measuring the impact of social media activity is very important, 65% of people believe that doing so is extremely difficult.
As stated before, some companies just aren’t meant to be socially awesome, or to grow their conversions and leads through social media. Monitoring the right metrics and using that newfound data to continuously improve is what will bring more success and higher ROI to organizations. By tracking the right data points such as time spent on certain pages, mobile visitors versus desktop visitors, seeing if videos can be more engaging than articles, you can start to increase your leads for B2B business without even spending money on marketing. It is a much easier way for a business to be more efficient with their spending if they are tracking the right data and improving on those goals. Know your swim lane and then OWN IT.
Other Interesting Blog Posts:
- Future Social Media Challenges - http://inbound.business.wayne.edu/blog/future-social-media-challenges
- 11 Common A/B Testing Myths BUSTED - http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/34254/11-Common-A-B-Testing-Myths-BUSTED.aspx
- Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing: Digital Trends for 2013 - https://econsultancy.com/reports/quarterly-digital-intelligence-briefing-digital-trends-for-2013
(All accolades and credit for this tremendous blog post are for Shehzeen Ahmed who is the author and creator of this content.)