Conducting a social media content audit is an important part of a social media marketing plan, as it reveals strengths and weaknesses of the activity you are carrying out across your marketing channels.
First, it allows you to identify the effective content that shows your audience is engaged.
Second, it shows your competitors’ successful content, that you can incorporate across your platforms.
Last, it helps to identify what kind of content is not engaging your users and therefore should be optimised or dropped.
Let’s go through the 4 steps below which explain how to perform a social media content audit:
1. Identify the right platforms
Identifying which platforms are the ones you should really focus is the very first step in the audit, allowing you to stop wasting resources on improving content on channels that are not relevant for your industry.
But, how can you know which channels to focus on when there is an overabundance of options out there?
First, you need to ask yourself: who is my target audience? Being able to link the social media channels’ audience to your brand’s audience is essential as this will make sure that you’re reaching the right people at the right time.
In case you are not sure about social media demographics, take a look at this great infographic published by Social Media Today which will show you all the major social platforms’ audiences.
For instance, if your brand targets women it is more than likely that you should optimise your Pinterest account. Or, if your audience is under 25 years old, you might want to improve your content on Snapchat.
As important as analysing the social channels your audience uses is looking at the social media accounts your competitors are managing.
Check this by simply visiting their websites and searching for social media icons. Then, visit those profiles and see where they’re active by looking at the number of followers, post frequency and whether there is user engagement.
2. Measure engagement
After identifying the key social media platforms for which you should optimise your content for you need to measure organic metrics in order to understand how much engagement these channels are generating.
You can either:
Use a tool that pulls in the insights for all of the networks you are on simultaneously.
With True Social Metrics (you can request a free trial) you can see the most important engagement stats for all of the major social media channels.
Compare the metrics of your channels within the same dashboard. Source: True Social Metrics.
First, take a look at the “Posts” metric to find out how active you are on your channels. If you are not posting regularly this may be the reason for your low levels of user engagement rather than low-quality content. If your “Posts” metric is low, think about setting up a posting schedule plan.
Then, you should check user engagement metrics to understand if your content is generating engagement on your platforms: take a look at the number of likes, shares, comments, mentions, video views. By doing this, you will discover the most and least effective social networks for your brand.
The next step is to try to find patterns in both groups: why on the most effective social networks does the content work? Why on the least effective social networks does the content not work?
3. Classify and analyse your content.
With Buffer, you can find the most and least successful type of content on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram and export the data to an Excel file so you can analyse it.
Select the social platform you want to review first, go to the analytics section and choose a date range.
To find any patterns on the content that is generating major engagement, filter your posts by “Most Popular”. Repeat the same process by clicking on the “Least Popular” tab so you can find patterns on the content that is not generating engagement.
You can filter your content by the “Most Popular” to find out what is generating engagement.
Have you found anything in common with the content that is working? Or anything in common with content that isn’t?
You may discover that certain topics are recurrent under the “Most Popular” tab and other under the “Least Popular” tab.
Focus on those successful topics, now that you know they are generating engagement, and create more content related to it.
To find out which type of posts (images, links, text, videos) are generating engagement, select your “Most Popular” posts and filter by “Image Posts”, “Video Posts”, “Link Posts”, “Text Posts”, etc. within the “All Posts” tab. Repeat the process changing to the “Least Popular” option as we did above so you can discover the types of posts that are not generating engagement.
Buffer lets you filter your content by type to discover which one is the generating the major engagement.
If you find out that the most popular content is video, consider creating more of this type of content for your platform. Likewise, if you discover that text posts are not engaging at all you should think more about putting this aside and posting other types that are more successful.
Are there similarities with the content that works and the content that does not work across platforms?
It may happen that some topics and type of posts work well on some channels and on others don’t. This is the reason why you should perform content analysis across all your key channels before coming to the decision on getting rid of a topic or type of post.
4. Identify your competitors’ successful content.
It is also key for a successful social media content audit to look at what your competitors are doing, to identify areas of opportunity to improve your social strategy.
In order to analyse your competitors’ social media channels, you can use Fanpage Karma (they currently have a free 14-day trial).
Go to the “Dashboard” tab, select the channel you want to analyse first, and add your competitors’ homepage URLs. The tool will find the social media channel associated with the website.
Compare all your competitor’s profiles by channel.
Within the “Dashboard” section, click on the “Analysis” tab and filter by the competitor you want to start analysing.
Or, you can analyse all competitors together if you want to discover who has the best content among them, rather than analysing one competitor at a time which can be time-consuming.
You will see their most engaging content based on many metrics, including Top Pictures, Top Videos, Top Links, Top Hashtags, Top Words and Type of Posts, among others.
Top Pics and Top Videos from your competitors
Find out which types of posts are used most often for your competitors
For Facebook, you can also analyse your competitors’ reaction metrics (wow, haha, angry, sad. etc).
Have you spotted any content from your competitors that could be an opportunity for you? What kind of content are they posting? Images, quotes, gifs, blog posts? Which is the most successful?
See what kind of content is generating the different Facebook reactions
Once you have identified your competitors’ most engaging content, compare it to your content and find topics or type of posts that you may be missing. If that happens, you should think about incorporating them into your social media strategy plan.
Have you performed a social media content audit before? Which tools and metrics do you use?
What other factors do you think should be taken into account when conducting a social media content audit?
Leave a comment and let us know!