Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Data, Social Media, and You.

How do YOU pronounce it? Day-ta or Dat-a?

What actually IS it? Encarta defines it as information, often in the form of facts or figures obtained from experiments or surveys, used as a basis for making calculations or drawing conclusions.

Surveys? Experiments? How does this apply to social media? And, you thought I was going to talk about ROI, didn’t you?

Ah, questionnaires. Good old fashioned quantitative market research; an excellent way to get some insight from your fans, followers or circlers. And plenty of free sources to use. But beware of bias and improper wording; I’ve seen lots of poorly written surveys in my time!
Find a market research professional, tell them what it is you’d like to learn from your clients, and let them do the rest. Great data starts from the best preparation, from defining the issue, including determining the possible actions that will be taken as a result of the findings, creating the questionnaire, testing, fielding, processing, analyzing and reporting.

What do you want to learn from your fans on Facebook for example? Some ideas include:
  • Demographics, beyond the location, age group and gender that Facebook provides to page owners
  • Gather ideas on what they’d like to see on your page
  • Test out a new product concept
  • Their opinions on a particular subject; perhaps something that you’d like to blog about at a later date
  • Greater detail on their interests (psychographics in market research speak)
  • How they feel about some of your current products and likelihood to buy
  • What charity they’d like to see you make a donation to

And the other half of that definition, experiment?  How about trying something new with your posts? For example, my other endeavor, Groovy Reflections, offers products, namely hand tie-dyed t-shirts sporting the brand logo. Personally, I don’t enjoy getting in people’s faces touting these offerings.

So, instead, I’ll post something that’s more on the “softer side”, such as giving away a shirt instead (have been doing this every 500 new fans).  Discussion about the free shirt will be lively and some of the more curious folks may inquire more about the products while others will explore quietly on the website. It's both engaging and creating awareness.

Not exactly a focus group facility!
It’s not as good as having a focus group, but you’ll get some qualitative feedback. DO remember that this is a very informal way to gather information and it’s not representative of the population at large that has an interest in your brand or business.

Focus Groups, either in person or on-line would provide some concrete data on the respondents as well as their individual responses in conversation based on a well-planned out guide contain the question you’d like to have the respondents discuss.

Data is powerful if gathered wisely! Do learn from it to make your social media efforts even more successful!

For more data (ha!) on data, say hello on my Facebook or Google+ pages or tweet me.

This is "D" of the Blogging A to Z Challenge. Don't forget your A, B, C's!


Canadian Dad said...

I've been trying out some new ideas on my FB page. The only problem I'm having is me...I come up with ideas, implement them and the next thing I know, I'm completely off track and all my steam is gone.

I guess I'm new enough to be having mental lapses in between trying to learn as much as I can.

BTW, boat in french is bateau :))

Gerry Wendel said...

Most of the ideas I get for blogging come from real life happenings that I will usually refer to in the blog (like my recent Nana Jeans post)...though if I'm referring to a person, I change the name.

And sometimes I get more than one idea in a I make some bullet points about the subject if I can't get around to writing it.

You're doing great with your's those little moments that are so important! Keep on sailing in your bateau!

Abracadebra Designs said...

Hey there, Found you via A to Z blog hop. Great D post here. Thanks for all the info. Checked out a bit of your blog and am liking what I see. I can use all the marketing help I can get for my Zibbet jewelry Shop.

Gerry Wendel said...

Hi Debbie! Just followed you on Twitter. Feel free to DM me. This A to Z Blogging Challenge is not as easy as I thought it would be but it's enjoyable. Nice to meet you and will give your blog a read right now.