I always stress measuring impact and results in social media planning. That’s why I was curious to see what exactly happened this past week. Last Friday, I posted the first list of people and organizations in classical music on Twitter, followed by a Twitter update. I know lists tend to be popular, but this one really took off.
First, the size of the list. The quick, down-and-dirty list I posted contained 138 people and organizations. I gave the option of adding and updating your information, which resulted in nearly 70 responses for people and 37 responses for organizations. Bit.ly counted 116 clicks for people and 65 clicks for organizations. Today, the list contains 259 people and organizations; it nearly doubled in size.
Second, how many people saw the list? Statistics provided by my site’s hosting service show that the original blog post received 2,409 views from 10/16 to 10/23. Bit.ly recorded 1,180 click-throughs from the original bit.ly link I created (this does not include other possible url-shortener links).
Looking at Google Analytics and comparing statistics from 10/16 to 10/23/09 with equivalent sites of the same size, I received more visits than average, but page views were below average or at par. Pages per visit were much lower and bounce rates were much higher than average. New visits were above average. Average time on the specific blog post was 00:05:23, which is double the average of equivalent sites.
Google Analytics tells me that I received a lot of single-focus traffic. People were interested in the list, but left as soon as they were done. The few people that did navigate further mostly went to the featured posts or the main index page. This is hardly surprising, seeing a lot of the traffic came from Twitter. But perhaps it illustrates clearly the need for enticing my audience with other content in a more effective manner.
So this brings me to my third point. Twitter reach. Backtweets indicates that 101 tweets were generated containing the link to the blog post. Looking at Twitter Analyzer, from 10/16 to 10/23, I reached a potential audience of 123,340 people. This, of course, includes the scarce tweets that weren’t related to the list, but it also excludes tweets that contained a link to the list, but neglected to mention my Twitter username.
In terms of influence on Twitter, from 10/12 to 10/23 I moved from a “casual” twitterer to a “connector,” according to Klout. My score increased from 31 to 41, which means an increase in engagement, reach, and network strength. Over the course of the week, I saw a steady increase in followers of 15-20%.
I also saw a modest blog subscriber increase from 145 on 10/16 to 164 on 10/23, according to Feedburner. The blog post generated 28 comments and also spurred the following posts by other bloggers:
Slipped Disc by Norman Lebrecht
Adaptistration by Drew McManus
Café Aman by Anastasia Tsioulcas
A Liberal’s Libretto by James Newman
Monotonous Forest by Bruce Hodges
Orquestrando by Jefferson Paradello
Mirette’s posterous by Mirette Kanga
Peter’s preposterous by Peter Witte
And I should not forget the dozens of e-mails and direct messages on Twitter, either to add to or update the list, to give me some suggestions, or just to say thanks.
Those are all good examples of metrics and measurement, but I haven’t really described the goal. This is usually done first, but I did not have a clear goal of selling tickets or products. I suppose a broad and generic goal of increasing awareness of my blog (and me?) could be applied. In that aspect, I think the above metrics clearly demonstrate I have achieved a good increase in this awareness. But perhaps more important was the network building and the relationship forging. The dozens of e-mails and direct messages alone proof this achievement.
Lastly, applying the concepts I outlined in my e-book: I measured interest (page views, click-throughs, retweets); I measured attitude (comments, e-mail and direct message reactions, blog posts); and I measured action (people updating information, building relationship).
Overall, a very good exercise in the strength of social media. And all I did was create a list and tweet about it.