Written by Austin Andrukaitis
Social media offers a valuable opportunity for businesses to connect with customers. That said, not every platform will work for your business. That’s why you need to review which platforms and strategies are helping you meet your business goals and which ones aren’t. If you don’t do this, you could end up spending a ton of time and resources on campaigns that don’t produce results.
In other words, you need to perform a social media audit. If you do it right, you can generate a more positive ROI with social media marketing.
In this post, we’ll show you how to perform a social media audit in 5 simple steps.
1. List Down All Your Social Media Profiles
The first step is to identify all your social accounts, of course. A Google search of your business, brand, or product(s) name can help you find all your social networks. That includes any account that’s associated with your brand or DBA name. Don’t be surprised to see “imposter” accounts linked to your business that you didn’t know about or set up. We’ll talk about how you can deal with these later.
Once you have a list of your social accounts, tabulate important data. You can have the following columns in a table:
- Username/page URL
- Status (active/inactive)
Feel free to add any other metric or key performance indicator that you think is relevant for social networks.
Once you have your table, delegate your imposter's social media channels to your legal department. You also have to work towards removing such social media accounts. For some accounts, contacting the owner will do the trick. For others, you may have to report the imposter account to the relevant social media network. Once done, you can set up Google Alerts so it can notify you of any new imposter accounts.
2. Evaluate Each Platform
Let’s assume you’ve already written down the data for the Platform, Username/page URL and Status categories. You can easily get the data for these, after all.
Now it’s time to evaluate each social platform.
Your platform engagement metrics will help you understand how well users are interacting with your brand on various social networks and who they are.
At this stage of the social media audit, you want to pay attention to platform likes or the demographics that use your platform. Generally speaking, every social media platform usually comes with an in-built analytics program. The program collects and analyzes this kind of information for each platform.
On Instagram, for instance, you can have access to Instagram Insights if you’re using an Instagram Business or Creator account:
You’ll also want to look at how each platform fares in terms of bringing in website traffic. For instance, how many visitors does your TikTok account bring you? How many leads or sales do you get from your Instagram page?
You can use Google Analytics to find out. First, log in to your Analytics account, and then on the left sidebar, navigate to Acquisition, then click Social.
The Overview section gives you a holistic view of your social media traffic. The Network Referrals part shows you traffic from each social network.
Conversions show your conversions and how much they’re worth and Plugins will show you how effective those social media share buttons are on your site. Lastly, User Flow will give you a graphical illustration of how and where users enter and exit your site.
Of course, you need to look at your platform’s subscribers and followers, too.
Take note of all of these values. It’s best to write down the specific dates each of the values applies. The data you derive from your first social media audit will give you a clear picture of your current social media strategy, yes. But that’s not the only time that data is useful.
You can also use this data as your baseline to determine whether or not the strategies you implement afterwards are working. The data you derive can also help you develop a digital marketing funnel.
So, to get the most out of your audits, record the same values on a yearly, quarterly, or monthly basis.
3. Pay Attention to Your Top Posts
You’ve checked your platforms’ metrics. At this point you need to do the same with each social media post. After all, to optimize your social media marketing strategy and generate a positive ROI, you need to identify the types of content that perform well and are bringing you the money, so that you can capitalize on them.
How do you check each post’s engagement? Again, use the analytics feature of that platform. For example, Facebook’s Audience Insights tool is featured below.
Instagram Insights can even give you an overview of your most liked photos:
Use engagement metrics i.e. likes, comments, and shares to find out your best performing posts. While analyzing these metrics, answer questions like:
- What are the types of content your target audience enjoys? Are they educational videos, questions, memes, chats, or polls?
- Is there a specific type of post that works better than the others?
- What are the attributes of these posts with high engagement?
The next step is to identify any recurring themes or patterns. Look at publishing times and the type of media used. Identifying these patterns will help you find out how to best engage with your audience.
4. Set Goals for Each Platform
By now you should already have an idea of how well (or poorly) each platform is performing. It’s therefore time to set goals for each platform.
Your goals should involve more than growing your follower count. Since you want to increase ROI, these goals should revolve around how you can use social media to improve your brand’s visibility. That said, here are some of the most popular social media goals:
- Boost brand awareness
- Get more leads
- Boost conversions and sales
- Increase engagement levels
- Build a community
You can write down your goals in an Excel sheet or in any other document that works for you. Just make sure your goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely (SMART). A great example of a SMART goal is “Grow our Facebook page followers to 250 over the next month.”
Some goals, however, are not quantifiable. While it's difficult to measure brand visibility, for instance, it's not impossible. In this case, you can use supporting evidence like follower count as your key performance indicators when setting goals. For instance, you might define an improvement in brand visibility as gaining 100 more Instagram followers in one month.
When setting goals, make sure they’re achievable (remember, it’s the letter “a” in the SMART acronym). Don’t set a goal of gaining 1000 YouTube subscribers in one week because, unless you come up with something spectacular and therefore unrealistic (if you give away money in exchange for a subscription, for example), it’s really very difficult to achieve.
5. Create a Plan
Using the data from your audit, you can now create a more effective social media plan. Let’s say you find out that your audience is mainly made up of Gen Zs and they love educational content. You can use this information to create a content calendar that resonates with your audience. If you discover they like quizzes, you can add more quizzes to your content to boost engagement.
You can also now optimize your target audience using the data you’ve collected from your social media audit. That includes their demographics and which platforms they like to use. This information can come in handy when setting objectives for each social media campaign you’ll run.
Don’t forget to define the “what,” “when,” and “how” of your plan (the “why” has been defined. Remember when you set your goals for each social media platform?).
Generate content ideas and formats for your campaign. That includes creating an outline of the type of content you should create depending on what is already working. Then figure out the right time to post to maximize reach and which social channels you should focus on.
The “how” refers to all the social media activities involved. That includes content creation and automation, and the tools you can use to make your life easier. Combin, for instance, offers a variety of features to help you skyrocket your Instagram marketing.
Based on your top-performing posts, you can create a social media calendar or content calendar that will keep the buzz going on your social media pages. Specify in your plan, too, the types of social media campaigns you’ll be running. Apart from posting engaging and diverse content regularly, you can run paid ads, work with influencers, among others.
You might want to create separate plans for each campaign to be run as well.
A social media audit will help you identify holes in your social media marketing strategy. Once you identify the areas that are failing, you can fix them and optimize your use of social media to generate a positive ROI.
You’ve learned how to perform a social media audit in six steps. Identify all the social accounts you have. After that, evaluate each channel and your social media posts. Using that information, you can now define your social media goals and come up with a plan to achieve them.
Perform a social media audit now and reap the benefits.
💡Or trust the audit to be run by the Combin team with InstaCheck, an exclusive report for you on how to improve your Instagram accounts.
Austin Andrukaitis is the CEO of ChamberofCommerce.com. He's an experienced digital marketing strategist with many years of experience in creating successful online campaigns. Austin's approach to developing, optimizing, and delivering web-based technologies has helped businesses achieve higher profit, enhance productivity, and position organizations for accelerated sustained growth.