Social media marketing has really exploded over the last couple of years and today, it forms an absolutely critical part of any company’s branding, marketing and advertising strategies. Experts abound, creating incredible content, campaigns that target certain buyer personas with pinpoint accuracy, and beautiful, optimized websites and blogs, but how do we know it’s working?
How do we track our social media to determine whether or not it’s doing us any good?
The hashtag is one of the social media marketer’s best friends when it comes to tracking ROI on social media. This simple little symbol has become incredibly pervasive across all forms of social media and it makes it so much easier to see just what’s going on. Whatever platform you are using, tracking tags is a simple, reliable way of seeing just how good your engagement is. Here’s our quick guide on how to track hashtags.
1 - What hashtags should you track?
Obviously, you want to know how well your original hashtags are doing. But you can’t really get an accurate picture unless you also track the hashtags being used by your competitors. You need to know who’s doing better, which helps you refine and improve your hashtag strategy.
2 - Which platforms should you measure?
If you’re using a social media platform, you need to track it. Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, they all allow use of hashtags, and they’re all trackable, so wherever you have a social media presence and are using hashtags, you should track it.
3 - What programs should you use?
There are a plethora of both free and for-purchase software applications you can use to track hashtags. Some are cloud-based, some are an installation. You can try Keyhole, Sprout Social, Iconosquare or Simply Measured, or any of a host of others. Primarily, you want to be able to see how often your tagged content is being shared or otherwise engaged with and you also want to be able to see trends over time.
4 - What should you do with the information?
The information gathered should preferably be used to improve your social media game. See what is working - both for you and your competitors - and build on that. See what isn’t working - again, both for you and your competitors - and work on improving on it. Get to understand trends and how they grow, and take advantage of them.
Remember always that the primary goal of a hashtag is to encourage a conversation with your potential customers. Whether you’re using it for long-term branding or a short-term campaign, it’s an incredibly useful tool for seeing just how far your social media reach extends, and whether people are interested in talking to, and about, you. Check out our series of articles on how to use hashtags, how to register a hashtag and how to use them best on LinkedIn and Pinterest for more on this useful little device.
Let’s develop a great social media campaign for you, complete with great hashtags and up-to-date analytics. Get in touch.