Reporting is inevitable, and usually not very popular, part of every social media manager’s life. Although the creative part is more ‘fun’ for us, the reports and the discussion about your results is the part that will prove you worthy in your client’s eyes. Let’s discuss how to make this crucial document more appealing and what to include!
1) Focus on the client’s goals
Interestingly, the first crucial step to a great social media report should be taken before you even start doing your job for them. That precaution is setting up the marketing/communication goals with your client. Most certainly, they should have on their mind what they want to achieve with their social media communication. The important point is to operationalize the abstract objectives (e. g. using the SMART methods) to make them more tangible and measurable. How else you could later show your client that you are aligned with their goals?
Choose your metrics carefully and make sure that they are truly measuring the progress towards the desired objective. This can get tricky sometimes, as much of the impact of social media marketing, such as increased brand awareness or improved corporate image is hardly translated in true SMART goals. Additionally, make sure that your software tools are actually capable of measuring the desired metrics.
Furthermore, don’t hesitate to set milestones on your way to check regularly, if your efforts are going in the desired direction.
2) Let the numbers speak
Hard, meaningful numbers should be the centrepiece of your report. In step one, you have set up the communication goals and consequently the reasonable metrics to measure your progress. Now, it’s the “reaping” time when you discover whether your efforts were worthwhile. The data collection may be sometimes time-consuming, so don’t hesitate to any of the helpful software tools available (e.g. Ads Manager for Excel)
Summarize the most important numbers in a few slides/infographics and focus on the ones most relevant to the client. Remember that nice comments lacking any “hard evidence” in numbers can seem unprofessional and insufficient.
Tip: If the client has an e-shop and at the same time Facebook pixel implemented, you should be able to track down the number of purchases and the amount spent by the customers based on your FB/Instagram ads. Such numbers are very interesting for most clients.
3) Provide added value
A great way to upgrade your “ordinary report” to a splendid one, is providing your client with some extra value. For instance, you can compare your monthly results with previous months/years or show graphs of the brand’s performance to show your client the “bigger picture” of the current progress. In addition, as you as a marketer already know, it is advisable to be aware of your competitors’ actions – so why don’t you include a brief analysis of your main competitors in your reports, too? Not only is it providing you with an interesting benchmark to assess your page’s performance but also an inspiration for your content.
Okay, businessmen DO love numbers, but that doesn’t mean you should flood your clients with all the loads of data your analytics can provide. Instead, pick the most important ones and present them in a more attractive, visual way – charts, graphs and infographics are your best friends here. Bear in mind that a professional, visually appealing presentation can get you more “points” than tons of precise, but chaotic data.
5) Add comments
Don’t hesitate to spice up your report with additional comments to the data. Explain why you think such numbers were acquired and what it means for the brand. You may consider including a brief insight in your future strategy as well (e.g. “We will focus on maintaining the last month’s trend in engagement. For that reason we will create more posts of this kind…”) to show that you are constantly learning from previous results.
I hope some of those tips will help you improve your marketing reports and win your client’s favour. But remember – there are no universal tips in online marketing. What works best for one doesn’t have to be applicable for all. Therefore, do not hesitate to experiment on your own and take feedback from your clients to adjust your reports to their wants and needs.
Interested in this topic? Read how to analyse and report your buyer’s behaviour on Facebook.