Monday, May 20, 2013

Lunch with NEMA: Social Media Metrics

I've now attended - or tried to attend - each of the New England Museum Association's Lunch with NEMA series. On the last Wednesday of each month at noon, NEMA presents a webinar on a relevant professional topic. Some of them have been good; some of them have been boring; all of them have been a welcome addition to the online professional development world.

The overall concept is good, if a bit tricky to manage sometimes - I rarely have an uninterrupted hour in the middle of the day, and even if I take lunch for 30 minutes or so and listen in, I'm guaranteed to have to mute and step away for a few minutes.

That being said, I will continue to try! Last month's webinar on Social Media Metrics with Caitlin Thayer of Barefoot Media was the best yet. Here are a few notes from Caitlin's presentation.

Collecting Social Media Metrics

Caitlin's overall thesis was well-illustrated by her opening quote: "Don't be driven by data, be informed by data." (Beth Kanter)

- pull data from Facebook once a month, on the fourth or fifth of the month: it takes some time for the website to catch up all its statistics
- look for overall trends, not individual posts
- Caitlin has found that three posts per day on Facebook is the sweet spot for many institutions she works with, but emphasized testing out your own institution's frequency and monitoring your audience's response
- people can tell if you're auto-posting - don't do that! Take a few minutes and post directly to Facebook rather than scheduling and exporting your status updates from another service

- Hootsuite is an excellent tool to monitor Twitter activity
- Caitlin's rule of thumb for Twitter is to post anywhere from 3-25 times per day
- use a maximum of two hashtags per tweet, and keep enough space so that people can retweet (ie, don't use up all 160 characters)
- go ahead and auto-schedule Tweets through Hootsuite
- keep track of your clicks and your "Klout" score via Hootsuite's profile page
- as you tweet, keep track of people who regularly engage with you and reach out to them individually to ask them to promote your events, attend special events, etc.

- YouTube is now the second largest search platform on the internet after Google
- One video per month is a good rule of thumb

- websites are static - regularly updated blogs can help people find reasons to keep visiting your site
- once a week is a good blogging rule of thumb

- keep in mind that the majority - as much as 60% - of people are reading e-newsletters on their phones or mobile devices, so design your text and visuals with that in mind
- photos and videos in newsletters are crucial and encourage clickthrough
- don't be shy about your newsletters subject lines - personal and casual can sometimes be better; the Obama campaign had the most success with subject lines such as "Hi!" and "What's up?"

General Advice
- use social media to monitor your relationships and inform your content - what are people saying about you? what are they looking for?
- give a well-rounded view of yourself (your museum) and your community - people like seeing institutions go outside themselves
- shooting out information without engagement is an easy trap to fall into - ie, don't just post random clever facts endlessly, seek opinions and input and thoughtful discourse
- with a strategic plan and clearly identified goals, social media can be done well in one hour a day

No comments:

Post a Comment