Everybody wants to be liked. And in today’s world, savvy public relations executives and marketers are leveraging and integrating social media in everything they do. But, as a small business, how can you track the progress of your work, and determine how well your brand stacks up? At Likeable, we’re working on answering complex social media ROI questions and a Likeable Index to measure it all. In the meantime, here are seven simple ways to track how well-liked your brand is on Facebook:
1) “Likes” on Your Page vs. Your Competitors
Likes are the most obvious way to track how well-liked your brand is. You can track this manually on Facebook, of course, but AllFacebook.com’s page stats also features graphs and allows you to track your page’s likes against two competitors. Check out this example of 1-800-Flowers.com vs. Proflowers vs. Teleflora.
2) “People talking about this” Metric
You might have lots of likes on your Facebook page, but if those people are totally passive, how meaningful is that? Facebook’s new “People talking about this” metric, located directly underneath the “like” count on your Page, tracks how many people have interacted with your page in the last 24 hours. It’s the best metric of how well-liked you are in real time.
3) Engagement Rates on Your Page
Facebook Insights allows you to look at how well-liked each and every post of yours has been, along with comments each post has generated, giving you effective engagement rates that you can measure on a weekly or monthly basis. There’s a lot more you can learn from Facebook Insights, an evolving product for Facebook marketers.
4) Click-Through Rates (CTR)
Engagement rates tell you how active your fans are within the Facebook environment, but you probably also want to track how often they’re coming to your Web site from Facebook. Use bit.ly or another link shortener or tracker each time you share a link with your fans, so that you can compare click-through rates and total traffic over time.
5) Basic Sentiment Analysis
Facebook Insights doesn’t yet offer sentiment analysis, but Radian6, Vocus and other companies do. This way, you can track not only how many people are talking about you and your competitors, but how much of the conversation is positive, negative or neutral.
Not only can your Facebook posts be liked or commented on, they can be shared. Sharing allows your posts to travel outside of your fan base to the greater 800 million-plus Facebook ecosystem. So tracking your post shares over time can be a really effective way to see how well-liked your content really is.
7) Contest Entries or Votes
Many brands use contests, sweepstakes or other promotions to engage their fans on a regular basis. One example is Ritani’s Real Moments Campaign. If you host an ongoing weekly or monthly promotion, tracking the number of entries you receive over time is an excellent way to see how deeply engaged your fan base is.
While it’s great to have a fan page on Facebook, using these seven metrics can allow you to easily track exactly where you stand versus your competitors on the leading social network, as well as how well-liked you are now versus the past. Now, the challenge remains: How do you go from being well-liked to most profitable?
[Disclosure: 1-800-Flowers.com and Ritani are clients of the author’s company.]