This is pure gold dust

If you’re responsible for fan engagement on Facebook, read this report by Buddy Media now!  It’s a statistical study based on all the rich data Buddy Media have at their disposal, so if you need evidence or insights to help improve engagement strategies on your wall, this is a great place to start.  These are some of the questions it aims to answer with some revealing results:

  • What is the optimal length of a post?
  • What is the impact of URL shorteners?
  • When is the best time of day to post?
  • What is the best day to post content (by industry sector)?
  • How should open-ended questions be constructed to solicit the best response?
  • What keyword phraseology gets the best results for promotions or action-orientated posts?

You may have the answers to these types of questions already having conducted your own analysis but if not, read on!

via Techsavyagent

Thank God for Google Analytics

If you ever need to dramatise the real value of web analytics, try showing your client this.


Handy tool by Googlelabs to optimise webdesign

Here’s a nifty little tool from Google Labs to help you work out how much of your website design is actually visible to the end user, depending on the size of their browser window.  It’s dead easy to use – simply tap in your URL and your website appears overlayed with browser penetration figures so you can see at a glance the proportion of visitors who can view your content without scrolling. Or more to the point, the proportion of visitors who completely miss key elements of your design because it falls below the fold! Pretty important stuff, particularly if you find that your primary call to action is currently out of site for 30% of your visitors.

The IAB guide to Social Media Measurement and Intent

Not so long ago I helped to develop the IAB social media measurement framework in conjunction with the IAB Social Media Council. It generated quite a lot of press coverage at the time and seemed to stimulate some positive debate around the issue. What was particularly encouraging is that ISBA have got behind it too.

This week the IAB Social Media Council has published a social media measurement guide which expands on the framework whilst also drawing on the collective experience of the Council members who sit on the measurement subcommittee.  I’ve written the introduction which explains the rationale behind the framework and how it works, so if you’re not familiar with it, do check it out and let us know what you think. It’s virtually impossible to come up with a framework which will please everyone, so I’m sure some people will struggle to see its value but hopefully the majority will feel it’s a step in the right direction!  But there are also some very useful contributions from COI, Market Sentinel, We are social, Outside Line, NMIncite and Unruly Media, so even if the framework isn’t for you, there may be other interesting insights which you can glean.

There’s a blog post on the Council’s blog which introduces the guide or you can dive straight into the meat and bones here!

A new framework for measuring social media

As part of my role on the IAB Social Media Council, I’ve been working on the formulation of a new framework for measuring social media activity.  We firmly believe the industry needs to be much more aligned when it comes to measurement.  Not only will a robust methodology help us evaluate our own success but it will also help us when it comes to draw comparative learnings from other players in the industry.

But this isn’t possible unless there’s a lot more standardisation in the way we measure social media activity.  Hence this model.

I’ve called it the IAB Framework, not just because of the association with the Internet Advertising Bureau but also because the acronym  respresents the 3 stages of the methodology I’m proposing. Quite chuffed with that one actually 😉

  • Intent
  • 4 As – Awareness, Appreciation, Action and Advocacy
  • Benchmark

You can view the rationale behind this framework in the presentation below or alternatively read the post I wrote last week on the IAB Social Media Blog.  In fact, I discovered over the weekend that this was the most tweeted presentation on Slideshare, making it onto their home page under the  ‘Hot on Twitter’ section. Clearly it must have been when most of the twitterati were asleep!

I’m also pleased to say (and somewhat relieved) the Council is largely in agreement this framework and will be promoting it to the press in a couple of weeks.  So let me know if you’ve got any feedback or suggestions as I’d rather hear your feedback now than after it’s in the public domain!

These heat maps are hot!

clicktale heatmap

I came across this handy web analytics tool recently which looks particularly helpful in identifying website insights without spending a small fortune in website usability research. Clicktale is essentially an online tracking tool which is able to record and play back all the visitor actions including mouse movements, keystrokes and interactions with controls such as drop down lists, check boxes  etc.  Clicktale aggregates this data to provide link analytics, conversion reports and heat map analysis.  You can watch a simple demonstration on their website here.

This can be a cost-effective way to help you determine why your website is generating high bounce rates or why you’re not quite getting the click throughs you anticipated.  But the application which has really caught my eye is their Form Analytics tool.  Ok, I admit, it’s not the most sexy area of insight generation but in terms of identifying behavioural insights which can have a demonstrable impact on conversion rates, it’s not something to be scoffed at!

The Conversion Report they produce can identify how many visitors:

  • Landed on the online form page
  • Left without even touching the form
  • Started filling out the form
  • Left midway through completing the form
  • Attempted to submit form
  • Left after failing to submit form
  • Successful completions
clicktale conversion report
These sorts of insights are gold-dust to any online marketer and can have a significant impact on the business, not just in optimising conversions but also shedding insights on KPI reporting.  For example,  I read that one company conducted this analysis only to find the reason why they were getting such low conversions on the website was because users were arriving on the form page only to cut and paste the telephone number and phone the company directly.  So whilst on paper it looked like the website was underperfoming as a lead generation tool, the reality was somewhat different.