With ALL of the time spent on marketing your business, building relationships with your ideal client, developing and posting content, social media, it becomes crucial to know if you are spending time on the right activities and if that time is producing results.
How do you know where you are going IF you don’t know where you came from?
I bet you keep track of your money – which is very important, but do you track the path to your income? We all want our businesses to grow but do you track your steps? Often tracking is not a priority and something that can easily be pushed aside.
We often get so busy, and caught up in our day-to-day lives, our measurement for success is – do we have a new client, or more orders and we figure, well that’s working. But is it? How do you know?
I suppose it depends on your individual needs, but when you can quickly “see” how your efforts are trending each week/month using results from glancing at stats, that can quickly help to determine if you are on the right path and/or motivate you to try harder on a particular task.
Are you tracking your steps to success?
Do you track your website traffic, or analyze your social media engagement? Yes, there are traffic tools that provide a weekly or monthly tracking of results, but does it show the whole picture including your social media activities?
You may be thinking of:
- Who and where did the visits come from?
- How well is your activity working for you on Facebook, or Twitter?
- What about those LinkedIn groups, are people reading your post and then visiting your site?
How do you know?
As much as technology intervenes and provides tools, I have yet to find something that gives me an overall picture of everything I spend time on through my marketing and various efforts to drive traffic in one place.
I am currently in a wonderful class with Tea Silvestre, called the Test Kitchen (check her class out, there is one coming up in January…take advantage now and apply) that requires we keep a journal of our weekly activities on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google Analytics.
The journal sparked an ah ha moment for me about a previous process I utilized in my corporate life. I thought wow…how did I forget that? I was a tracking, reports queen. I pulled information from various systems, inputting the results in one report, graphs to show trends, you name it.
Yet, I had not created a report for my business with all the data that exists. I was looking at each piece individually vs. as ONE!
I decided to create a spreadsheet using the components of the journal so that I could have the weekly results in ONE place and I could easily see the trends week after week. (The visual/digital side of my learning style).
Shoot, if I had the time, I’d take it to the next level and create some type of automatic update to generate graphs too!
Trends..What are yours?
Knowing who, and where people are coming from to your site and WHY they decided to visit is important. It would help to analyze on a weekly basis and determine if a particular article, title, blog or twitter posting led to more visits and are people really engaged. Do you have ANY kind of influence?
Tracking your trends is beneficial, especially if you have a new website, or you have made significant upgrades.
Don’t get me wrong I am the queen of efficiency, and I definitely support all efforts to remove manual processes, but once the spreadsheet is developed, take 30-45 minutes a week and update it, and you will be glad you did. Or of course, delegate it. See sample below.
You can use tools like Sprout Social, Klout, Google Analytics, Feedburner, and more, but can you find them all in one?
Once you start the process and update it weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly…you really get a good picture of your trends.
I am new to Social Sprout and still learning. I have to say, I really like it. In the short time I have been paying attention to it, I am starting to see trends. Below are a few examples. (Note: these are two different dates that I glanced at tool. Look at the difference in the mentions..there is quite a bit of interesting data in this tool..still working on determining which components to watch)
There are others, I just wanted to start your thinking about utilizing this one and possibly others.
Still not sure…well think about your tracking in terms of ROI…that just may help to make it a priority. What are your thoughts, is there a tool that does do all of this and I am just not aware of it? What tracking methods have you developed to watch your trends-do share? Are you tracking your results?