How to Use the Social Media Metrics Story

The Talu Social Media Metrics story provides a weekly summary of your social media channels. Right now we integrate your Twitter and Facebook analytics and plan to add additional channels soon.

The report is delivered weekly on Monday and accounts for the prior week of activity on your channels. When you set up your report we ask a few questions to help focus the display of the data, there are four ways we allow you to orient the data on the report:

Consuming   •   Talking About   •   Sharing   •   Contribution

Depending on which of the four settings you choose we will highlight and visualize specific metrics for you in the report. The story is broken down into 5 questions. 

Question 1 - What is my overall activity on social media?

Question 1 provides a high level summary of the activity  on your social media channels. We display the key activities on each channel, as well as categories in order to make the story more digestible.

Everything highlighted in red connects data to the focus area you selected when you configured your report (e.g. Consuming, Talking About, Sharing, or Contributing). You should be focused on increasing at least one of these 4 activity categories, and Talu helps you emphasize one based on your marketing strategy. 

Example: Let’s say you have a smaller audience and you are looking to grow that audience. Your goal translates to users to sharing your content so that your social presence can reach new users. If you are already satisfied with the size of your audience, then you should focus on how users consume your content

The above graph shows a daily trend for your activities across all your channels combined. 

The above graph shows a daily trend for your activities across all your channels combined. 

Below that, each channel is broken down with details for activity and activity category. For example, contributions on Facebook account for new comments, new posts to your page by others, and new answers for Facebook Questions.


How to use this question:

  • Get a quick read of your overall activity going up or down
  • See what days your activity is the strongest
  • Identify if you're getting the type of engagement you're hoping for. (Do you want mentions, post shares, likes?)
  • What percent of your total activity is aligned with the types of actions you're looking for? Are you looking for more retweets but more people are just consuming your content?
  • Are users truly engaged with you the way you expected and how to make changes?

How we use it at Talu:

  • On Twitter we're trying to increase our follows, direct mentions and retweets. We have two goals with Twitter, grow our audience and get our content introduced into new users. The more we increase those three actions we see growth in our follower count and reach.
  • On Facebook, we have a slightly different strategy. We use Facebook ads to help drive traffic to our site and we share our blog posts. We have been focused on increasing our page likes so we can use that base demographic to help fine tune and boost our ads. We're also looking for post shares so we can get our Facebook fans to introduce us to new people.

Question 2 - What is my reach on social media?

The purpose of the 2nd question is to give you an overview of how your content is reaching your audience on social media. Reach is measured differently for each channel. Reach on Facebook is a count of how many people viewed your content in their newsfeed, even if it was for just a millisecond. However, Twitter reach is a count of how many people potentially saw your content, meaning it showed up in their timeline but they may or may have actually scrolled past it.

Tip: The reach may greatly differ between Facebook and Twitter. We recommend comparing each individual social channel against itself, week over week, to any trends.

For Facebook, you get to see how many total page likes you’ve accumulated and how many new page likes you acquired for the week. You also get to see how Paid, Viral, Organic each contributed to your Total Reach. On Facebook, paid reach is the number of people that saw your content as a result of ads, whereas organic reach is the number of people that saw your content from your own posts, without the help of ads. Viral reach counts the number of people that saw your content as a result of someone else sharing it. 

The chart shows you which day(s) saw the most reach and we also included the number of efforts you took on Facebook (i.e. content you posted), so you can correlate which of your posts had the greatest impact on reach.

Tip: Facebook highly values paid posting over normal posts, so in order to get strong reach on Facebook we recommend using some paid posts or ads, especially when you’re just starting out. Increasing your Facebook likes provides advantages when doing paid promotion. 

On Twitter, we display your total number of followers and the amount of new follows you gained for the week. We then show you the organic and viral reach that makes up your total reach. Just like with Facebook, you get to see your reach for each day of the week as well as the number of efforts so you can see how your tweets impacted your reach.

How to use this question:

  • Identify how many people you're reaching on each of your channels
  • See how different activities and efforts impact your reach
  • Identify goals for reach on each channel
  • Understand if your reach is increasing or decreasing
  • Identify how many efforts you need to keep up with in order to maintain a certain reach
  • See how well you're attracting new followers

How we use it at Talu:

  • On Twitter we're trying to grow our follower count and increase our reach on a weekly basis so we're able to interact and share content with others. We review our efforts against our reach weekly to determine the right cadence for our efforts. 
  • We're growing our viral reach on Facebook by looking for people to interact and share our posts so we can gain more Facebook followers. We use our growing follower count to improve our ads and adjust our spend accordingly. 
  • Our paid reach is important to us as we can compare the typical paid reach we need on Facebook in order to convert enough new visitors on our ads. This helps us understand what spend will get us a certain reach. We have also been able to use this to see if our ads need some updates or tweaking, for example if we're getting similar reach but our conversion are going down, our ads our not performing as well as they did in the past.

Question 3 - Has anything unusual happened?

This question helps identify unique outliers in your data that might require some extra research. At the heart of this question we're doing statistical analysis and identifying a specific activity on social media that has deviated from the mean for the week. While this doesn’t necessarily mean something is good or bad, it helps to highlight things you may want to research.

In the example above, consumptions on Facebook reached a high mark of 840 on Friday, while the average was 672 for the week. We pushed 2 posts on Friday, 1 with a link and 1 with a photo.  

Another example: Your paid reach on Facebook might have a significant difference from your normal paid reach? You might ask yourself why? Did you target a different segment? Did you spend more money that day? If so, this might help you identify in the future how to get the best reach for your paid ads with Facebook. 

How to use this question:

  • Use these anomalies as a starting point for further research
  • Identify issues and/or opportunities that might present themselves in the data
  • Use these as a gauge to identify if you're really making progress on a specific area. For example did mentions of a post go up when you tried content that differs from your normal posts?

How we use it at Talu:

  • We use this as a starting point to look at our assumptions. As we try different things from week to week we review this question to see if we can validate or learn more about our assumptions. For example, did our viral reach expand on Twitter one day? If so, what did we post or who retweeted that post to help drive that result. 

Question 4 - What did you do on social media this week?

This question summarizes your efforts on your social channels and will help you gauge how your level of effort affected engagement on your site. If you're on a team, it quickly provides a look at what your colleagues contributed that week.

How to use this question:

  • Compare week to week efforts and see what level of effort could impact your reach and activities
  • Quickly gauge to make sure you're providing the effort on the channels as your expected
  • Helps identify what type of efforts make the biggest impact. Try to vary the type of efforts you do and see how they impact your reach and engagement. For example, do you gain more Twitter followers if you create your own tweets or retweet other posts?

How we use it at Talu:

  • We compare week to week to see if we're getting enough posts out the door as a team
  • For Twitter we look at if retweeting and favoriting posts have an impact

Question 5 - What is influencing my social channels?

This question identifies what type of content is receiving the most engagement on your channels and who is influencing your channels. 

On Facebook, we highlight 3 pieces of your content: 1 post that had the most likes, another that got the most shares, and a third that received the most comments. For Twitter, we display the tweet with the most favorites, the tweet with the most retweets and the tweet with the most replies.

Note: We only display content that was posted the week of the report.

We also identify your Top 3 influencers on Twitter (this data isn’t available for Facebook). Here’s how we determine the top influencers: Influencer Score = (# of days a user engaged with your content) x (# of followers that user has)

We also identify your Top 3 influencers on Twitter (this data isn’t available for Facebook). Here’s how we determine the top influencers:

Influencer Score = (# of days a user engaged with your content) x (# of followers that user has)

Put plainly: 

  • We identify who engaged with your content - by way of retweet, reply, directly mention or favorite 
  • We count how many days they engaged with your content for the reporting week
  • We look at how many followers the engaged user has
  • We give the user an Influencer Score by multiplying the number of days and the number of followers

This way, you get to see a measurement of someone’s popularity AND how actively they follow you. 

How to use this question:

  • Quickly understand what posts worked and were driving engagement
  • Validate the types of content that will be the most popular
  • Try different types of posts out and see how they work
  • Find out which users on Twitter are engaged with you and use this to determine who is interacting with your content 
  • Use content that resonated with your influencers to build additional content that will reach more people.

How we use it at Talu?

  • We get a quick read of what posts received the most engagement. We ask ourselves… is this what we expected?
  • Many times we have seen one or two influencers that provide a noticeable boost to our reach for the week
  • We reach out to our influencers and engage them in future conversations