Why Data Is Critical in Social Media (7:43)

Posted on by Abby Johnson |

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Social media isn’t new. In fact, it has actually been around for a long time in various forms. However, social media, as we know it today, really began to popularize only a few short years ago. Since that time, people have gone from jumping on board with social to wanting to find competent techniques for using it for their business.

In this interview with WebProNews, Dan Zarrella of Hubspot discusses a few of the issues that people are having with social and what they can do about them. For starters, people are always raising questions about measuring social media efforts.

“When you’re talking about social media analytics and measuring social media, it’s really important to be accurate, [and it’s] not so important to be precise,” said Zarrella.

For example, most of the tools for getting positive or negative feedback about a brand are 50-60 percent accurate. If you are using one of these tools for specifically fleshing out the bad tweets about your brand, you’re only going to get a little more than half of them. Zarrella calls this form of measuring precision.

With accuracy, on the other hand, he points out that you can look at trends. For instance, if you look at the baseline of positive tweets and the baseline of negative tweets, you can measure increases and decreases.

Also regarding data, Zarrella emphasizes the importance of digging into the data and finding out what it means. There is a group in the social media industry, which he calls the “unicorns and rainbows,” that tend to constantly push engagement, value, quality, and other buzzwords.

While these areas are important, he said that the tactics around them are only based on what feels good. This group doesn’t encourage people to call themselves gurus or experts. However, Zarrella has found that, according to the data, people that do identify themselves as an authority on Twitter have more followers. For this reason, he believes people should get into the data and act on what it implies.

In addition, Zarrella discusses Facebook and how people don’t have to be concerned with the continuous changes as long as they are geting the basics right.

Posted in: Advertising and Marketing, Analysis, Dan Zarrella, Facebook, PubCon Las Vegas 2010, Social Media
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