Toowoomba is a personal favourite area for us. Whether you’re just visiting for the markets, the beautiful surrounds and the City Golf Club, or you’ve settled in the area because of its great schools and university as well as the general lifestyle, its unique way of life and strong sense of community make it a fantastic place to be no matter what your reason for being there is. Its thriving and growing populace is also a great incubator for local business and enterprise, but with all of the above comes a slightly different set of circumstances under which businesses need to operate if they want to market themselves successfully, with social media marketing at the forefront of such an approach for obvious reasons. We’ve already covered how a local approach to social media marketing can work in this previous blog and provided some Instagram specific examples here, so for today’s blog we thought we’d take it one step further and provide some ideas on how best to track Facebook results if you’re running social media marketing in Toowoomba.
Let’s start with a few of the obvious things first.
1. Is your audience local, transient, or both?
Let’s say you’re a Toowoomba mechanic for example’s sake. Your customers would be a good mix of reliable local business and out of towners either passing through or visiting. Obviously, the content you produce for social media (and yes, mechanics can produce great content) will cover bases across all of these target markets, but are you measuring the ratio of each when it comes to who interacts with your page? It’s easy enough to geo-target when you’re creating paid social media advertising, but nowhere near enough businesses pay attention to this very easy to understand metric that’s readily available for free within page insights to assess who are interacting with them.
Knowing your audience should be one of the very first things you consider before you do anything on this channel and the data in question should be front and centre as you start to make marketing decisions. Simply click on “Insights” while viewing your page, select “people” and you’ll have what you need to properly assess who you’re speaking to.
2. What’s more engaging and for who?
Having worked with businesses in scenic, smaller cities before, we know from data analysis of these campaigns that when it comes to the local community, activity-based posts are best rather than nice pictures or videos of the local environment. Things that involve your business being active around town and contributing. Tourists, on the other hand, tend to respond better to the scenic posts talking up the things that people around town can see every other day but they can’t. How do we know this? Because we paid attention to the data and the methodology we were testing. We ran both types of content across two businesses: One with a local community customer base and one with a higher rate of tourist customers, which we were able to ascertain as per point 1 above. It was then a simple matter of checking engagement on these posts and finding out what worked best for each!
3. Sure it’s obvious, but are you checking?
We always start out with the basics when introducing clients to social media marketing because more often than not, although they are very likely aware that these metrics exist, they don’t actually check them. You should be reviewing your audience metrics at least once a month in order to stay ahead of any potential shifts and to gain an understanding of what they are responding to. Whether it’s post engagement, audience location, increases or decreases in reach or page views, video views or an increase in audience participation (likes, comments, etc), this data is all available in the “insights” section of your business page on Facebook. Look at it, take notes, make decisions for the month to come.
So with the obvious stuff out of the way, here are a couple of things you might not know.
Paid advertising and “per impressions”. By default, any paid advertising you create within Facebook is set to charge you per click. This is generally fine when you’re running a straight sales or re-marketing campaign (although there can be reasons there to choose other options), but when it comes to branding, paying for impressions instead (the number of times your ads are shown rather than clicked on) will generally outperform other options. If you’re engaged in a branding exercise then you’ll understand that direct monetary return from that campaign is not necessarily the goal, so getting it in front of as many eyeballs as possible rather than optimising it for clicks is a bit of a no-brainer. However, with that said “daily unique reach” can also be a great choice if you’re looking to present the brand freshly to people rather than to reinforce the brand name in people’s minds. How this relates to tracking is covered in the next point.
Testing is God! You might have noticed an underlying theme in this blog so far, but if not, it’s this: We could blog for days about every aspect of the available metrics within both paid advertising and Facebook pages as well as the other social media platforms and we hope that the above at least gave you a couple of things to think about, but at the end of the day what good tracking really comes down to is your mindset and how you use that data. We’ve already provided advice on how to use social media (as linked to in the opening paragraph above) and you can find much more online both from the official channels and various other experts. It’s not hard to understand what metrics are available to you if you do your homework. What really matters is that you’re using this data to make informed decisions. If the last changes you made to either a paid ad or the nature of your page content was because “we tried that, the data said it didn’t work, so we tried this” then you’re somewhat on the right track, but if the “so we tried this” part was just a new guess at what to do because the previous guess didn’t pan out, then that’s where you’ll derail yourself.
Look at all the data. Facebook knows their platform. They provide the information that they provide for a reason, so dig into it. Try not to get bogged down with a narrow focus or only the negative data. Look at what works too and try to incorporate that into your next round of changes. Have you got a sales campaign that isn’t working? Try shifting from simple pricing and product/service information in the creative and use that great data on how engaged the community seems to be when you show that you’re part of the fabric of the town. Create a sales campaign around that idea. This is obviously just an example but it’s the kind of mindset to apply. The number of likes or comments on a post can absolutely provide valuable data for a paid sales campaign and vice versa. If that doesn’t work? Look at the data again! Keep a log of what does and doesn’t work. Review it regularly. Keep trying and keep making informed decisions via the data and you will rarely go wrong.
As always if you’d like us to elaborate on anything here and start a conversation around your marketing please feel free to get in touch!