3 Great twitter analytics tools that will help you grow your presence on twitter and help you become more successful on twitter.
Sarah Baughman's insight:
Nice blog post from Ian Cleary on three analytics tools for Twitter. The first, TwitterCounter is especially helpful if you are new to twitter. It tracks your growth in followers and although you can do this yourself manually TwitterCounter makes it much easier. The key for Extension educators/specialists is to make sure to not only track follower growth but to figure out why your followers are growing, or not. Is there particular content that seems to attract more followers and are your followers who you think your audience is?
The second tool, WhoTweetedMe, helps measure your engagement on Twitter. Again you can do this manually but this tool takes out much of the work and it also captures retweets that don't include your name.
The last tool, TweetStats, is particularly helpful for figuring out the best time to tweet. You can run TweetStats on any twitter account so it's also a good way to find more influencers in your community and learn what is working for others.
Last month, Stephanie Evergreen wrote an awesome guest post called "Six Steps to Great Charts" with lots of practical tips for using the Excel chart feature to visualize your social media measurement data.
Sarah Baughman's insight:
A critical element of evaluation is using your results and that often involves writing a report or somehow sharing your data. This is a nice primer on basic charts and how to create useful charts.
Want to find out how your YouTube channel is performing? Find out how to use YouTube Analytics to gain insight into your YouTube channel and video performance.
Sarah Baughman's insight:
Many Extension systems and faculty are using YouTube as a way to reach and engage with new audiences. As with all social media it's important to define what success looks like and measure how you are doing. This is a great article detailing the specifics of YouTube Analytics.
Key things to pay attention to are actual views including how long the video was watched. This can help you determing if people are actually watching your videos all the way to the end. If not, perhaps your videos are too long or you are not reaching the right audience. You can also get demographic information to help determine if you are reaching your intended audience. YouTube analytics also provides some engagement metrics such as likes, shares, subscribers, and favorites.
Create infographics and interactive online charts. It's free and super-easy! Follow other users and discover amazing data stories!
Sarah Baughman's insight:
Infographics can be found everywhere on pretty much any topic. Here is a nice, easy to use tool for creating your own infographics if you have farily simple data. I created several infographics for our Ask an Expert historical data that can be found here http://create.extension.org/node/2790 .
Extension educators can use this tool to present data or other information in newsletters, facebook pages, county web pages or written reports. Visual representation of your data (beyond basic charts) can be a powerful tool to get people to pay attention to your work and more importantly the impact of your work.
This post from Mark Schaefer of Social Media Today discusses how he went about discovering if his blog had any impact. Quite simply, he contacted people who had left comments on his blog and spoke with them directly. He was able to discover a very real impact he had on readers this way.
If you blog as part of your Extension work and want to document impact a great place to start is with your commenters. You have a couple of options - you can create a survey to send to them or you can contact them individually and have an informal conversations. We often measure engagement on blogs through the number of comments but this offers a way to go beyond basic engagement metrics and find out how you are really impacting your audience. This also gives you a way to discover more about your audience. Who are they and why do they read your blog out of the millions of blogs on the web. How did they discover you? Have they learned anything or changed practice based on your blog?
Let me know if you have other ways you have dug deeper into evaluating your blog.
This blog post from Beth Kanter is a treasure trove of useful information. I was initially drawn to the post by the title because I have been working closely with our network literacy community of practice on helping our military and extension audiences build personal learning networks. However, for me, the most useful information is the assessment framework and theory of change she presents. I am a big advocate of theories of change for extension because a good theory of change helps educators think beyond activities to community change. The social media maturity of practice model looks very useful for helping integrate social media into our larger programs and gives some great indicators to use when measuring/determining progress along the model.
This post from KD Paine discusses the first social media measurement standards summit. What may be interesting to Cooperative Extension professionals are the guidelines on measuring reach, engagement, influence, opinion and impact.
One interesting point is the statement that reach comes before engagement and influence takes place beyond engagement. I don't disagree but I think increasing engagment on social media sites also increases reach so it's not quite so clear cut. What do you think?
Some great suggestions from the Philanthropy Potluck Blog on story telling with data. Short and sensible recommendations include starting by answering some questions then determine the right type of graphic. Eliminate clutter (my favorite), draw attention where you want it, tell a visual story and practice. And all these means that you can't wait until the very last minute to write that report or impact statement! Thinking about data presentation should be part of your evaluation process from the start.
It used to be that if you wanted to get data on a certain industry, keyword, hashtag or Twitter user you had to wait for a geeky, social media scientist type to..."
Here is another tool to help gather and analyze data from Twitter. I haven't had a chance to play around with it much yet so would love to hear your thoughts, experiences with TweetCharts. Is it giving you the data you want? Can you use that data to make changes, improve strategies or otherwise take action?
This blog post from Ann Emery offers a nice collection of questions for focus groups conducted with youth participants. The questions may be useful for non-formal educators, especially 4-H educators as they work to engage youth in the evaluation process. Giving youth a voice in the evaluation process can be enlightening for both educators and youth. In my experience the youth perspective is often "unexpected" and can lead to some great discussions and potential programmatic improvements.
This is a nice follow up to the Getting the Most from Facebook Insights webinar I conducted with Karen Jeannette last week for eXtension. We discussed the importance of downloading data from Insights to get even more interesting metrics. This post takes it a step further and describes calculations that can be done using that downloaded data. Formula's for "average organic reach per post," "average engagement per post," and "engagements per engaged user"are presented
The pertinent question is, what would you do with this information? Do you, or your supervisers care about "engagements per engaged user?" These metrics provide further information on how your social media work is reaching and engaging audiences. Using averages allows for consistent tracking over time and will be less susceptible to extremes. Drilling down into per post and per user information may help you further refine what's working and what's not working as well as give you nice documentation on how your social media work is translating into expanding your reach and engagement.
Use of surveys in Extension for program development and evaluation
Sarah Baughman's insight:
Recording of webinar by Dr. Michael Lambur and I for Extension professionals on using online surveys. We discuss basics of survey design including constructing questions, question flow, avoiding bias and general tips for how you can use surveys in program development and evaluation.
Reviewing your performance on social media regularly is essential to ensure you are investing and not wasting any time.
Sarah Baughman's insight:
This article introduced me to some new tools for measuring social media activities. The tools are Likelyzer, Social Crawlytics, Twitonomy and Hubspot. The important point to remember is that the tools are only one part of the equation, it's what you do with the information provided that makes all the difference.
I am lookin forward to trying some of these tools and would love to hear about any of your experiences with them.
This is the recording of the eXtension Network Literacy CoP conversation on the role of evaluation in determining the public value of Extension. Dr. Mary Arnold of Oregon State University, Dr. Nancy Franz of Iowa State University and I are the panelists.
Although the public value conversation has been happening for over a decade now, many systems are either not embracing it or are just now beginning to think about framing our work in public language. My question is, will it make a difference? I don't know that we have enough states using public value to assess if it makes a difference, especially in these tough budget times.
With the new Pinterest Web Analytics, business pages that have switched to the “new look” of Pinterest and have a verified website, will be able to access these analytics.
Sarah Baughman's insight:
In a recent presentation on social media measurement I lamented the lack of a decent tool for Pinterest Analytics. It looks like the folks at Pinterest were listening! The new PInterest Web Analytics allows "verified" users to see site metrics such as number of impressions per pin and what pinners are pinning from your website. The attached link includes a useful video from Pinterest.
I love this article from Reuters about the Pope's twitter account! It has some great nuggets about measuring social media. First it's awesome that the Vatican has measured the twitter activity of both the Pope and Justin Bieber. And they didn't just use followers, the Vatican points out that although Justin Beiber has more followers, the Pope has more retweets. End of story, right?
The data is based on one day, and not the same day for both accounts. The days were chosen (apparently) by the most popular tweets for the Pope and Justin Beiber. So, really the Pope's most popular tweet was retweeted more than Justin Beiber's most popular tweet. What we don't know is what the data looks like over time.
Additionally there is an assumption made that retweets are good. Retweets are a measure of engagement and do indicate a level of interaction with the account. However with celebrity accounts it also seems likely that retweets may not always be positive.
The lesson here is that measuring social media is mainstream now, so if you are tweeting you should be taking a look at your metrics and comparing yourself to similar accounts if possible. But be careful what assumptions you are making about engagement and be sure to compare apples to apples over time.
KISSmetrics put together this interesting list of tools to measure reach and engagement on twitter. I regularly use TweetReach and find it easy to use and particularly like the nice clean reports it will generate. I haven't tried the other tools, let me know if you have and what you think.
This post from Sociagility offers 5 reasons to measure social media. As social media plays in increasing role in our Extension work I thought it would be a great reminder of why we should not overlook measuring social media as part of our overall planning and reporting strategies. The task of measuring social media can seem daunting at first but it is possible so here are 5 great reasons to get started: 1. to establish a starting point 2. To set direction. 3. To track progress. 4. To demonstrate success and 5. To justify further investment.
I have noticed a growing number of Cooperative Extension people using Pinterest to curate information for specific content areas. Which, of course, will soon beg the question of "impacts." This blog post from Beth Kanter offers some resources for understanding Pinterest users, measurement tools and a great paragraph on understanding how using pinterest relates to your overal programmatic goals.
I have not yet played with any of the measurement tools on pinterest but would love to hear from you if you have.
Great blog post from KDPaine. Her target audience is marketers but she makes salient points for anyone interested in measurement and data analysis. Here she discuss the focus on data rather than action. Her three primary points are -
1. Stop collecting data, start understanding it
2. Stop making lists, start making informed decisions
3. Trusting a computer to get you the right answer is stupid.
What does this mean for educators?
#1Keep your data collection simple and make sure you know what you are looking for so you can use your data to improve your programs or report results.
#2 I am a serious list keeper so this made me laugh! But it is critical to USE your data to help make decisions - and I am not talking about what to offer for lunch at the next workshop. And when you have decisions to make, go back to the information (i.e. data) you have.In Virginia Cooperative Extension our county offices do a situational analysis every five years or so. That's a great source of data - instead of guessing what programs to offer (or not) go back to that community based data.
#3 Dig into that data, what does it mean? Is it really telling you anything about behavior change? Is what the data (or statistian or computer) are telling you making sense?
New startup Pinerly wants to help you get a grip on your "Pinalytics." We go hands-on with the beta service.
Here's another promising tool for Pinterest analytics. It's still in beta but looks to have some nice features. It appears that you create your "pins" for Pinterest within Pinerly (say that three times fast!) to generate analytics such as repins, likes and clicks. It will also give you suggestions on who to follow, tips for increasing traffic, and suggested content. If you give it a try, let me know what you think.
Here's a nice post from Mashable on third party sites that will help you get more out of pinterest. And my favorite is.... wait for it....... PinReach. That's right folks, you knew it was coming. A tool to measure Pinterest influence. I have not tried it out yet as I have just started using Pinterest and don't have enough pins to make it worth measuring yet.
There are also some other non-measurement tools here that will allow you to pin quotes, screenshots and all kinds of nifty stuff.