Hours spent crafting content for an small, unengaged audience
Market research on audience behavior and demographics, as well as an understanding of the platforms themselves, can help brands move away from unsavory practices and start leveraging their social media presence so that it's a win-win for their business, and their audience.
SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT
Analytics, Guidelines, & Content Development
Social media management can feel overwhelming.
There are so many social platforms, and often entrepreneurs feel the pressure to be on all of them. With different markets, platform strengths, and algorithms to account for - this is no small feat, and small business owners can quickly get buried in strategy talk. This usually results in one of two errors:
Repeating the same content across all existing platforms
Note: The work done for this project falls under an NDA, identifying information has been changed and/or redacted.
I was tasked to analyze and suggest changes for a Life Coach that focused on the topics of financial freedom, work-life balance, and workflow automation. For the purpose of anonymity, I'll refer to the organization as ABC. ABC maintained a total of 3 social media platforms:
In many ways, ABC was flying blind in it's social media management. Stakeholders were aware that, for the most part, platforms were growing and showing healthy engagement levels, but they weren't tracking how or if this was impacting conversion rates or sales.
Furthermore, ABC wasn't monitoring the time that went into curating and developing content for their platforms, so their ROI only reflected content that was sponsored. ABC acknowledged that some platforms were an afterthought, and wasn't sure how much revenue their time and effort on social accounts was actually generating.
With access to ABC's social media accounts, it was time to dive into the analytics side of things. First, I analyzed the state of each platform to write up a report, focusing on the following aspects:
Sign-ups and Conversions
I also needed to understand the Objectives and Goals of ABC with their social media. Their goals going into the process were broad, and although they had an idea of what they wanted to achieve, the how and when were unclear. Together, we came up with the following.
Goal (How & When)
Brand Awareness: Increase awareness of new products and events
Raise share rate by 5% within 6 months, focusing on Facebook.
Acquire 15 email sign-ups each month
Business Conversion: Generate a steady stream of new leads
Customer Experience: Improve customer service
Average 1 hour response time by August 30
It was important that these goals were attainable, and because of the initial confusion about platform strategies, we kept to a fairly modest set of metrics. ABC's primary revenue came from one-on-one coaching and events, so building a base of enthused consumers and continuing to generate a stream of new leads were key to keeping their sales funnel full.
Each platform has it's own demographics, strengths, and best practices. Diving deeper into the content and interactions on each page allowed me to see what we were working with and begin to recommend shifts.
While this platform showed great growth and average engagement, there were some behaviors that weren't aligned with the platforms algorithms.
ABC averaged 3 posts a day - many of which showed low engagement and were bringing down the overall rate, contributing to less organic impressions on the page. Engagement spikes were consistent with Live videos and posts that asked the audience a question.
Content was heavily weighted towards sales and promotions. While this content is valid on Facebook, it needed to be balanced out with more personal and light topics.
As such, I recommended cutting down to about 10 posts a week, and lessening the sales content. ABC still needed to be able to push upcoming events and coaching opportunities, so that was shifted to become a part of the Live video content. Furthermore, video views showed that 16% of the audience watched for at least 30 seconds, while only 1% watched at least 95% of the video. To try and get viewers hooked, we opted to have a set introduction that included a hook and brief overview of the topics covered, as well as a recap at the end for late viewers.
Pinterest showed more challenges than the other platforms. Overall, it had a save rate of 0.1%, well below the platforms average save rate of .3%. Furthermore, pins that were the most popular weren't at all in line with ABC's current themes and goals, and instead focused on recipes, gardening, and marriage issues. I noted a few things.
A significant portion of the content wasn't in line with Pinterest best practices. Descriptions were sparse and lacking in hashtags, images were missing descriptive text overlays, and some weren't optimized for pin aspect ratios.
Boards were cluttered, inconsistent, and lacked in organization so if a pinner did dive deeper into content they found a lack of niche.
To remedy this, I recommended updating Pin images in Wordpress so that images were vertical, clean, and included a text overlay and logo. We also opted to reorganize ABC's boards into more specified categories.
Instagram showed great growth, and above average engagement for the platform, but there were still ways to boost content even more.
Personal content and reflection did really well, while sales information fell flat. This platform is more visual and casual, and some of the content wasn't speaking to that.
There was a lack of interaction with commenters and other Insta users. Tagging, commenting, and partnering all allow for better engagement and get content to a wider set of users.
Hashtags were being used redundantly, and switching them up allows for more eyes in the Discover and Hashtag search functions.
To continue to grow this platform, I recommended merging sales and personal stories. By connecting with their audience, ABC would be able to still push relevant events and sales without a blatant CTA. ABC also wasn't utilizing the Story feature, which I suggested be used to hint at new posts, show behind the scenes work, and incorporate smaller versions of the Facebook Live chats.
Most of the platform recommendations focused on the Brand Awareness goal, but we still needed to tackle Conversions and Customer Experience. ABC was already asking for email sign ups to download free content, but we started tracking this more closely by generating links for each platform so that we could see where the traffic was coming from.
Furthermore, ABC's inbox was often flooded, and they primarily relied on contractor's for their scheduling and customer relations. These folks had varying schedules, and it was hard to respond to consumers in a timely manner. As such, we opted in to a ChatBot service to respond to a significant portion of these queries.
Lastly, the way that time was tracked for contractors was shifted over to Trello. Each worker could then quickly access their tasks, note activities, and log their time.
Once a month, a worker would go in to calculate the time spent and cost per platform. Quarterly check ins to see the progress of each platform and goal success rate were also implemented.
I handed off my recommendations as a consultant, and checked back in with ABC after a few months. Some of the suggestions were implemented, while others (utilization of Instagram stories, timing suggestions, and some of the Facebook content shifts) were abandoned. Still, the following results were achieved:
Facebook Live: Share Rate from 1.7 to 3.2
Subscribers: Up 7.8% per month average
Responsiveness: 90% response rate within 15 minutes
Pinterest: Save Rate up 7.85%