When it comes to social media analytics I find that the simplest method is the best given the tight timelines that seem to be always required in my job. While there are many that provide better and more in-depth analysis, the reality is that higher-ups want the big picture, not the details and they want it presented in a way that’s simple to understand and easy to read.
Hootsuite and Google Analytics are, in my view, the best tools to meet this criteria. Simple stats and easy to understand data help to provide information needed quickly. Easy to used and download, there is no requirement to seek additional help or guidance from someone else to gather necessary stats either to respond to a request or to satisfy my own curiosity or business need.
I have also used Alexa and the amount of information that can be gleaned from the “interwebs” is amazing. To understand the impact of a social media post and to see the interest in a website is addictive. Anyone who’s launched a campaign of any kind knows the feeling of seeing the retweets, the likes and the web hits climb.
For best sources of news and updates Twitter is my go-to every time. It’s a bit of a joke in my house as someone will always ask me to “check the Twitter” to see what’s happening in the world. As a communications manager, it provides me with real-time updates in the news cycle, the political world and what key stakeholders are focused on. For me, it’s the best source of news for my professional life.
For my personal life, I rely on Facebook. While updates from friends and family are important, the forums and groups also provide updates that are tailored so specific interests. My only issue is the algorithms Facebook plays with regularly so proper updates aren’t being presented chronologically. More than once, I’ve missed an update because for a Facebook reason, it didn’t meat the algorithm at the time. However, Facebook provides the personal updates, news and trends that I need and seek on a regular basis.
I find both Facebook and Twitter to be unique communities that, together, keep me connected with what’s happening in my neighbourhood, my city, my province, my country and around the world.