If youve followed our series for A Simple Process for Successful Social Media, by now youve created a strategy based on listening & identifying the problem. The fourth phase involves Testing & Tracking the solution so its...
Whats the answer? I dont know and thats the point. I can trust my intuition & my instincts as a marketer " all of which are good & fine " to pick the title of the post but that's marketing myopia. Why not ask you? As smart as we are, we become smarter when we involve others in the solution. And, as marketers, historically we have never had more opportunities to increase the odds of success by pre-testing our work. So whether its as simple as a title for a post or an email or as large as a service or product solution, trial or test a number of ways to solve the problem before rolling it out to the community at large.
Here are few ways to do it:
- Stumble Upon: a great way to get an instantaneous reaction to content
- Pay-per-click: a god " or at least "Google-given way to get a quick read on specific post titles or email subject lines
- A/B Testing: Were all familiar with it with Website Optimizer but services like Objective Marketer allow you to test different versions of your social media content with smaller samples of your community.
- History: Dont forget to look back and study the results and the learning from the results of similar content
- Hallway Test: When all else fails, get out of your cubicle and ask others who fit the target customer profile. Its a great way to learn not only what works, but also why.
Now that youve got your answer set-up your tracking to find out if youre right. Some may ask why now?. Cant I do this later after I get my program launched? The answer is: benchmarks. Somewhere down the road youre going to be asked to prove this is working and youll rue the day you forgot to set base levels before you began.
The answer is g) all of above. At the SMX/eMetrics conference in Toronto last week (of which we were one of the sponsors) Stephane Hamel from Universite Laval said that the last time he checked the scientific method required multiple points of observation before making a conclusion. Hes right because accounting isnt going to care how many followers you have, however, if you can demonstrate a causal relationship between a spike in retweets and one in lead form submission, then youve got a result that will carry weight.
Look for patterns. Work like hell. And if you lose, as a saying we have around here goes, dont lose the lesson.