By Chris Sugrue

September 30th, 2016

Why do an audit?
Even though tracking social ROI is an often cited challenge of modern marketers, social media audits remain an under-utilized tool for understanding how companies are doing on social.

A social media audit enables you to take stock of your organization’s social performance and helps you plan how to develop and improve it for the future.

By laying out all the data it provides a unique opportunity to gauge and improve upon your social strategy. Both in terms of tying it into your broader business goals, and ensuring it reinforces a positive brand and customer experience.

An audit also helps with the all-important challenge of social media collaboration across teams and markets.

The questions your audit should tackle
A social media audit should answer the following questions:

  • How are we performing?
  • Is our content doing as well as it could be?
  • Are we in line with the goals of our strategy?
  • Is our team working collaboratively and effectively?
  • Are we able to meet the demand of social requests?
  • Are we equally strong on all of our channels?
  • How is our brand being talked about?
  • What are our competitors doing, and how do we compare?
  • Are our channels meeting our KPIs?

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The right channel balance is key to a successful social strategy

A chance to seize the quick wins 
Any audit will pick up on a host of small issues that can be quickly addressed. For example, are you using the right hashtags? Are you scheduling posts at the optimal time? Are you using links as well as you could? Sometimes the small tweaks can create immediate benefits. Identifying your best performing posts is a basic first step in creating improvements. You can see what works for you and why and put it to broader practice.

And address any strategic flaws
Sometimes brands simply veer off the best practice route. Not adapting content and the customer experience properly to the various channels is a common one. Each network has its special characteristics, e.g. if your brand has a Twitter profile, you had better have the resources in place to ensure the quick responses expected by Twitter users. An audit will ensure you don’t waste resources on channels that aren’t paying off, and shift focus to others that do.

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These are the four key areas our Falcon.io advisors concentrate on when performing an audit:

  • Content performance review – a review and suggestions for improving content to better reach your objectives.
  • Workflow health check – evaluating your workflow for social media management and calling attention to any efficiency gaps or areas for improvement.
  • Social media inventory – an overview of all of your social channels.
  • Digital buzz monitoring – a look at the online conversations around your brand, competitors, and key industry terms relevant for your business.

When the audit is complete, review your findings and think about how you can adjust your focus and activities to improve your return on investment.

Works for any kind of business 
Online takeaway service foodpanda operates in 500 cities on five continents. A Falcon.io client, foodpanda recently asked our audit team to give their global social media presence a look over. They were not disappointed with what came out of it. Their social media manager, Cristian Dohi, said:

“The social media audit done by Alex and his team proved insightful, not just in terms of recommendations on how to optimize our pages, but also in identifying patterns and trends across time and the different channels. Moreover, following their recommendation to track additional metrics helped us get a more in-depth understanding of content performance.”

In another instance, we conducted a social media audit for Danish bank, Arbejdernes Landsbank. Its Communications Advisor, Maria Brems Rasmussen, was eager to identify what was working well for them and what wasn’t.

“It was great to have a statistical analysis of our performance, to look into the anatomy of our posts and our strategy, and move forward,” she added that another benefit of the audit was its independent impartiality, which proved helpful when presenting its results and recommendations to the other internal stakeholders. You can read the case story here.

Getting it done
When completing a social media audit, comprehensive documentation and ample time are key. Don’t underestimate the time or resources that you’ll need. After putting in your due diligence and with the results of your analysis in-hand, you’ll want to do three things: first, create clear easily-sharable reports that detail the most important findings. Second, present your analysis to your team and, third, come up with a fresh plan of attack for the next quarter or year.

Final thought:
Don’t forget to share your findings with other departments within the company, look for connections, and brainstorm new ideas together. A social media audit is a unique chance for a fresh start. By knowing precisely how your brand is performing on social media, you can save time, sweat and tears with a social strategy that really works.

Social Media Audit Checklist

Serious about social media performance? Then try this do-it-yourself checklist.

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If you need help conducting your audit, our Customer Strategy team is available. Learn more about their services at https://www.falcon.io/services/

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