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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Getting Started with Social Media: A Guide for Nonprofit Organizations and Government Agencies: Measuring Success

Guide to resources and information about making a case for social media and developing a plan for which tools to use.

Analytical Tools

Below are web-based tools that can help you gather data for measuring social media success.

Measurement Basics

The Social Media Measurement Manifesto outlines six steps to effective measurement. The first three steps are part of developing an overall social media strategy.

  1. Define the goal
  2. Identify your publics and determine how your social media efforts affect them
  3. Determine the specific indicators by which you will define success
  4. Define your benchmarks by determining where you currently are and how you compare to your peers, using the indicators you selected in step 3.
  5. Select tools for each goal.
    1. Web analytics (e.g. Google Analytics, Wordpress dashboard statistics)
    2. Facebook Insights
    3. Retweets, Mentions on Twitter (easy to get when using a social media dashboard like HootSuite)
    4. Klout score -- The measurement of your overall online influence. The scores range from 1 to 100 with higher scores representing a wider and stronger sphere of influence. Klout uses over 35 variables on Facebook and Twitter to measure True Reach, Amplification Probability, and Network Score.
    5. Surveys
    6. Content analysis -- Listen to social media conversations to see what people are saying about your organization online
  6. Analyze results, make recommendations, do it again -- Look first for what didn’t work. Then look for exceptional successes. Finally, look at your benchmarks to compare yourself to your peers.