Before getting into the nitty-gritty of this month’s post, I’d like to give a quick career update to all of our awesome socialites. I have recently made a move down to South Florida to be the Assistant Director of Digital Strategy for the Athletics Department at the University of Miami. Even as I’ve moved along, Kimberly and the CSU Social folks have been gracious enough to allow me to continue blabbing on about social media from my new perspective and position. I’m excited to continue to contribute to such a great resource and be a part of amazing group of social experts.
I’m very fortunate to have come into UM with an established, strong, and vocal subscription base on all major social platforms. In fact, UM ranks in the Top 25 in subscriptions on every major platform when considering only main athletics accounts. With all of those subscriptions, one of my goals is to find a company to collect data about our posts, subscribers, post times, successful posts, etc. Another big thing for us is isolating social influencers and what they can do to help push content we want our fans to see.
In the first month I’ve been in Miami, I’ve started the process of finding a social analytics company, and if you’ve already done the search you know the market is not short on companies. As I’ve embarked on my search I’ve realized I should have considered a lot before I even started, I really didn’t know what I was getting into. With that being said, here are some things you might want to consider before starting your search for a social analytics company. Remember, your situation might be different and you might have different goals than we do at UM, but hopefully these things below help you with your homework before you start your search!
I didn’t worry about budget at all going into the search. Not because we have a gagillion dollars, I just expected the price would be reasonable within our means. It wasn’t until we chatted with companies that could provide the very detailed and robust analytics we wanted that I realized that prices range from $108 – $22,000 annually. Make sure you think about what you’d be willing to spend along with all the other social initiatives you’d like to do to make sure you can say yes or no to companies right away.
Most of these companies collect A LOT of data. Like. Lots. Which means you need to be have the time and ability to sift through it and make sense of it all. You also need to have a sense of what data is important to you, ensuring you can eliminate things that you don’t necessarily want to see. Ask, do I have someone who can crunch, report, overview, analyze all the data I’m going to have at my fingertips?
Does It Make Sense?
This one might sound simple, but you really need to ask yourself, does this make sense to spend this much money to grab all these numbers, synthesize the data, then take what we have and try to create new content based on this. You probably already have a social strategy with goals and a mission statement, so can you fit this new found data into that? Can you make new thoughtful content and integrate it into what you’ve already been posting?
This has taken a lot longer than I originally expected. Not that it’s a tough issue, just that setting up demos, calls, question and answer, etc. all takes time and energy out of your busy day. When you have your budget, have answered all the questions, set-aside ample time if you have a deadline or goal of when you want to start collecting data.
This was lengthy, but analytics can no longer be taken lightly and it’s only going to get more in-depth as brands, schools, companies start using this to hone in on their social strategy and goals. If you can manage everything, these analytics can be very helpful and will only make you great social managers even better!