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Social media analytics tools allow you to determine the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and engage with customers. A social media monitoring tool that’s free will help you track your performance, but only if its features will do the job. It should allow you to monitor keyword mentions, analyze sentiment, identify trends, and present data the way you need it. Keep reading for tips on using a free social media analysis tool effectively.
Social Media Analytics
In this blog post, we’ll review the importance of social media analytics and some great options to help you measure your social media marketing success.
What is social media analytics?
Social media analytics is the process of gathering, analyzing, and applying data, information, and reports related to the content shared on your social profiles and the social profiles themselves.
Why use social media analytics?
With social media analytics, you can:
- Understand the metrics that matter most to your team and business such as engagement, reposts, shares, clicks, impressions, and sessions.
- Identify effective ways to boost brand awareness and reach.
- Resonate with your audience.
- Boost traffic to your other content and website.
- Increase conversions.
- Improve customer loyalty.
How to Track Social Media Analytics
Here are the steps involved in tracking social media analytics
- Identify which social media platforms you’ll be measuring impact on (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram).
- Determine which metrics you’re doing to track (e.g. clicks, impressions, likes, shares).
- Choose a time period to analyze (e.g. last quarter, last month, last week, duration of your campaign).
- Determine which tools you’ll use to track and measure success (we’ll cover your options in the next section).
- Review and analyze your data (depending on your tool of choice, there may be internal features to help you understand and analyze your data — such as this one with HubSpot).
- Apply your findings and conclusions to improve growth in the future.
Falcon.io is a social media management and marketing platform. It also includes social media listening to help you keep tabs on conversations about your brand, provides audience data cards filled with valuable information about who you’re engaging with, and provides analytics to help you measure and track performance across each platform. Among these features, one social media managers and digital marketers will find helpful is the cross-channel insights report. It’s an overview of the performance of your social accounts and includes new fans and followers, engagement metrics by geography, age and gender, and more.
Liked other social media listening tools, Brand24 doesn’t disappoint. In fact, it packs a solid punch when it comes to identifying opportunities to strengthen social strategy. It does this with features like alerts for discussions around important terms, sentiment analysis of mentions that include your brand and product names, influence scores that inform who you should partner with to reach a larger audience, and more.
Altogether, these features, make it possible to cut through the noise and zero-in on the right data and metrics, and how to devise a stronger social media plan.
Keyhole is a social media analytics tool that automatically collects social media data & creates reports for you. It excels at four key things:
- Getting you inside the minds of your customers.
- Simplifying your reporting — so you can easily share results with your team.
- Showing you what attracts your consumers’ attention.
- Saving you a huge amount of time — as you don’t have to crawl different social platforms looking for and reporting your social analytics.
These are critical features to look out for when making social media analytics software comparisons.
As Neil Patel says, “This tool (Keyhole) does a lot of things others can’t. And as a bonus, it’s extremely user-friendly.”
The tool shows you when your users are most active, so you get to see your audience’s best engagement days and times.
Using Keyhole, you can find, identify, track, and reach out to your influencers:
You can also conduct a detailed and in-depth sentiment analysis of social media posts over time:
With Keyhole, you get to see the number of impressions, reach, posts, and engagements that certain accounts or hashtags are getting. You are also able to identify key influencers who get the highest engagement rates and the number of followers in specific industries and reach out to them right from the tool.
And if you ever want to know the demographics of your hashtag users or account interactors or followers, Keyhole shows you those as well — including the percentage of positive and negative sentiments of your followers.
Also, Keyhole customers can publish and schedule unlimited posts each month from all the accounts included in their plan. Managing anywhere from 3 accounts to unlimited accounts depending on your needs.
Pricing: Custom pricing for businesses of all sizes.
Key benefits: Performance data from every social network in one place with easy-to-understand reports
Paid or free? Paid tool
Skill level: Beginner to intermediate
Best for: Business owners who run their own social media, social media managers at small-to-medium sized businesses, marketing teams
Most social media management platforms have built-in analytics tools. We hope you’ll forgive us for saying Hootsuite’s reporting capabilities are our favorite. But it’s the tool we know and love best.
Imagine Twitter analytics, Instagram analytics, Facebook analytics, Pinterest analytics, LinkedIn analytics all in one place. Hootsuite Analytics offers a complete picture of all your social media efforts, so you don’t have to check each platform individually.
It saves time by making it easy to compare results across networks.
Social posts metrics:
- Engagement rate
- Video views
- Video reach
- And more
- Follower growth over time
- Negative feedback rate
- Profile visits
- Overall engagement rate
- And more
Best time to post recommendations:
Ever spend a bunch of time writing and designing a social post only to have it fall completely flat? There could be a lot of reasons for that. But one of the most common reasons this happens is posting at the wrong time. A.k.a. Posting when your target audiences are not online or not interested in engaging with you.
This is why our Best Time to Publish tool is one of the most popular features of Hootsuite Analytics. It looks at your unique historical social media data and recommends the most optimal times to post based on three different goals:
- Link clicks
Most social media analytics tools will only recommend posting times based on engagement. Or they’ll use data from universal benchmarks, instead of your unique performance history.
Other cool things you can do with Hootsuite Analytics:
- Customize report templates for only the metrics you care about
- Get reports on your competitors
- Track the productivity of your social team (response times, and resolution time for assigned posts, mentions, and comments)
- Monitor mentions, comments, and tags related to your business to avoid PR disasters before they happen
Hootsuite Analytics is included in the Hootsuite professional plan, with you can try for free for 30 days.
HubSpot Social Media Software
HubSpot provides a deep look into the way social media impacts your bottom line and gives you the ability to report on social media ROI. View and compare performance across different platforms, campaigns, and publishing times — all from a single tool.
Monitor your brand on social to understand how your target audience perceives your business and content. Additionally, YouTube Reports provide insight into how your audience and buyer persona’s engage with your videos. Lastly, effectively reach certain audiences by using data and context from the Contacts in your CRM (which this social tool integrates seamlessly with).
Instagram is one of the most popular social networks, with over 1 billion users active on the platform each month. Later started as an app dedicated to Instagram as a scheduling tool, but since its inception, they’ve added support for other social networks and are continuously adding new features. The app has a strong focus on visual content. Whether you want to schedule in-feed image or video posts, stories, or carousel posts — Later supports all of these options. Later has a free plan available that you can use forever, but you get features such as analytics, saved captions, scheduled stories, and more for paid plans. Their paid plans start at $9/month.
Marketers around the world can never go wrong with Socialbakers. Regardless of size or industry, Socialbakers takes analytics and social listening to the next level with predictive AI analytics, content performance, and side-by-side competitor summaries – all in one customizable dashboard.
What makes Socialbakers so unique is the one-calendar publisher, team collaborative community management, and a content creation hub. So there’s no need to flip through different systems just to get the results you need.
- Deep Content Intelligence – It’s the one place for marketers to see a comprehensive overview of their content performance, bringing data and creativity closer together. With automation, marketers have more room for strategy building and content creation.
- Performance Prediction with Content Grading – For organic engagement, Socialbakers’ Performance Prediction algorithm grades posts from A+ to D — allowing marketers to spot patterns in engagement and replicate their best-performing messages, images, and content types.
Key benefit: See how much web traffic and conversions your social media channels and campaigns generate (to be used with a web analytics platform like Google Analytics).
Paid or free: Free tool
Skill level: intermediate
Best for: all social media managers
UTM parameters are not a standalone social media analytics tool, but they are essential in helping you set up Google Analytics (or another web analytics platform) to best measure social performance.
Put simply, UTM parameters are short pieces of code appended to the links you share on social media. They very precisely tell you how many people interact with your content and end up on your website.
In the screenshot above, the UTM parameter is everything that comes after the question mark.
UTM parameters aren’t essential if you’re only concerned about reporting on social media performance in terms of engagement, followers, etc. But if you want to take it to the next level, UTM parameters + Google Analytics will give you more precise data on which social media content and channels drive traffic and conversions.
Pro tip: You don’t need to know how to write code to include them on your social media posts. If you use a social media management platform like Hootsuite, you can automatically generate UTM parameters in seconds.
Buffer Analyze is our social media analytics tool for online brands that want to make better decisions about their social media strategy and measure their results without feeling overwhelmed.
3 cool features:
- Instagram Stories analytics
- Posting strategy recommendations
- Create professional reports in as few as two clicks
Social media channels:
What analytics you get for free:
- All features for 14 days
- Overview and charts for key metrics
- Posts and Stories analytics
- Audience insights
- Easy-to-use report builder
Pricing options: $35 and $50 per month
AgoraPulse is one of the greatest social media analytics tools that helps you identify your best content and see what users need. And we all know that social media sucks time like a plague… But AgoraPulse is good medicine for it.
This tool is a huge timesaver for social media marketers. It helps you execute virtually all your social media tasks in one place.
Pro: You’ll be impressed by Agorapulse’s Twitter reporting functionality. The tool generates specific reports for your Tweets, mentions, retweets, and favorites as well as other engagement stats. This makes social listening pretty easy for you.
You can also post or schedule content across all your profiles at once. Plus, the tool’s chrome plugin helps you do all this at once — saving you time.
Con: Agorapulse’s listening is only available for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. So, if you’re interested in tracking LinkedIn and Pinterest you’ll have to use another tool.
Pricing ranges from $99 – $199 per month.
Social Media Analytics is a key aspect for every business to have a successful online presence. A social media analytics tool will help you understand what works and what doesn’t on your social profiles. The tools mentioned in this article are highly recommended irrespective of the size of your businesses. The only difference will be the features that they offer.