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Social Media Analytics Effective Tools for Building Interpreting and Using Metrics Pdf

Analytics is the process of collecting and analyzing data in order to gain insights. There are many great tools in the market that can do this in a simple way, yet most people don’t use them. Today we’ll look at some of the best tools for social analytics as well as give you some tips on interpreting and using those metrics.

Social Media Analytics is a practical, how-to guide to social media measurement, metrics, and analytics. The book helps readers discover important nuggets of information hidden in social conversations on the Web, and interpret them to make better decisions. The authors emphasize the real world use of social media metrics through examples, case studies and screen shots from various online services. Readers will leave this book with a good grasp on how to measure, interpret and use data obtained from social media.

In recent years, social media has moved from being a side project for many companies to an integrated, front-and-center element of their business strategies. This book will help marketers and other professionals understand why analytics matter in social media, how to use analytics tools effectively, and which metrics they need to analyze.

Social media analytics is the process by which social media and social networking data is translated into digestible, actionable metrics that describe online behavior within a given forum, network or channel. Social media analytics tools are the behind-the-scenes workhorses of the online world and they make it possible to measure a site’s activities.

Reasons to integrate competitor analysis and monitoring into your workflow

1. Dive deeper into your market segment: Analyzing your competitors’ social media behavior will give you an advanced idea of how your market segment fares on digital platforms.

Even if your segment is absent from social media platforms, it will help you understand how to build your content strategy. In this case, you might need to spend more effort to educate people about your offerings, considering that the chances are high the audience hasn’t heard of your product.

2. Learn what works for your market in terms of social media: Each industry does social media marketing differently. Some rely heavily on media posts, such as short video clips, infographics, product photos, while others post articles and reports. 

What works for some businesses might not work for you regarding social media marketing, so take the time to study what’s already popular in your industry. Always make sure to have what’s tested in your content strategy, and don’t rely only on experimental mediums and content types.

3. Set accurate KPI Expectations: To set measurable goals realistic to your segment, you need first to understand what your competitors have achieved. Are they ahead of you or behind you? If it’s the former — study how they have achieved it. 

4. Follow market trends: Make competitor analysis a routine task. A regular analysis can help you identify market trends, like seasonal sales, hashtags, or even social media challenges that either one of your competitors started or just participated in. 

 Buffer Analyze

Buffer Analyze: Buffer’s Facebook and Instagram Analytics and Reporting Tool

Buffer Analyze is our social media analytics tool for online brands that want to make better decisions about their social media strategy and measure their results without feeling overwhelmed.

3 cool features:

  • Instagram Stories analytics
  • Posting strategy recommendations
  • Create professional reports in as few as two clicks

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 14 days
    • Overview and charts for key metrics
    • Posts and Stories analytics
    • Audience insights
    • Answers
    • Easy-to-use report builder

Pricing options: $35 and $50 per month

Sprout Social

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a comprehensive social media management and monitoring tool that provides a host of enterprise-level options. Its cross-channel social listening features you perform a contextual and qualitative analysis of topics, hashtags, and keywords. You can tell how your content is performing on various social networks from its visual and intuitive reports.

3 cool features:

  • Analyze paid campaign performance across networks
  • Get group report of your social media profiles
  • Analyze your team’s performance (task performance, response rates, etc.)

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 30 days
    • Report builder
    • Reports for each social media channel
    • Reports for internal team performance

Paid options: $99, $149, and $249 per month



Hootsuite is a great combination of social media management, listening, publishing and analytics tools. It helps you ascertain what kind of content is working for you, increase the reach of your posts, improve the effectiveness of your ads, and get your whole social media team working in tandem. It has in-depth analytics features that give you a clear understanding of your performance across all social platforms.

3 cool features:

  • Customize reports by choosing from over 200 metrics and export them in PDF, Excel, or PowerPoint formats.
  • Measure your customer care team’s response and resolution time on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Track brand mentions better by integrating with specialized tools like Brandwatch and Talkwalker.

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 30 days
    • Overview of key metrics
    • Unlimited real-time reports
    • Team performance measurement

Pricing options: $19, $99, $599 per month, and enterprise pricing

Facebook Insights

Facebook is constantly changing the way it selects and displays content to its audience – meaning that page owners not only need to ensure content is relevant, but also that posts are published at a time when audiences are most active.

The Facebook Insights tool provides detailed information on Likes, reach, visits, video and people. One of its really cool features is the Posts tab; allowing you to understand when your audience is most active, displaying info by day and time.

On your business page’s admin panel, click on Insights. Now click on Posts and click on the tab When Your Fans Are Online.

Facebook Insights admin panel showing audience behavior

This gives you a complete snapshot of your audiences’ behavior. So, look for when they are most active, schedule your posts accordingly and you should see an increase in engagement.

You can also track the performance of your competitors’ posts with the function Add Pages which is under the section called Pages To Watch under the Overview tab, as shown below:

Facebook Insight's Add Pages feature

And if you do not know who your competitors currently are, Facebook goes a step further in suggesting pages to watch, as shown below:

Facebook Insights suggested pages to watch

Facebook offers a lot of help with understanding data provided by the Insights Tool, including a basic tutorial.


Similar to Facebook Insight’s function, Tweriod is a free Twitter tool that helps you to get the most out of the platform by letting you know the best time to Tweet.

Simply sign up with your business Twitter account and enter the email address to where you want the reports sent to.

Tweriod report showing optimum time to Tweet

The report shows you the peak times at which your tweets are going to get maximum exposure as well as the times that your followers are online.

It also provides hourly graphs of your Twitter followers and displays the last 600 tweets where your business was mentioned.


Bitly is primarily a link management platform. If you are including links into posts, messages etc, with Bitly you can shorten them and, most importantly, track them.

Depending on whether you sign in with Facebook or Twitter, Bitly shows stats of all the links that have been shared in the past. You can continue to use this tool to shorten your URLs and track those URLs from your social media campaigns.

Link tracking metrics summary on bitly

Bitly provides data by the day on which clicks occurred on your links, the location in which your links were clicked and the number of referrers for the links, as shown below:

Bitly clicks and locations dashboard


With HubSpot’s analytics tools you can tie social media performance to business and revenue growth. Whether publishing directly through HubSpot, or publishing using other tools or while on the go, you’ll be able to report on the success of your social strategy across every channel. You can also compare the performance of multiple social channels to measure campaign performance.

HubSpot’s social analytics tools offer expansive graphs and visuals that break down the numbers by specific platform features, like audience, session lengths, and impressions.

hubspot analytics tool


What’s important to highlight is that HubSpot’s social analytics tools is part of HubSpot’s Marking Hub, their all-in-one inbound marketing software. This means that using the platform you’ll have insight into the entire customer journey, not only social media-specific metrics. You’ll be able to see which marketing tactics are working best for your business, how are they impacting your bottom line, and learn about your social media campaigns ROI.

That makes HubSpot an excellent choice for businesses whose marketing teams want to keep all campaign functions in one place.


The boom of influencer marketing has created a need for social media tools specifically tailored for influencer campaigns.

Enter TapInfluence, an analytics platform which removes many of the “what-ifs” related to influencer marketing. This includes metrics such as reach, engagement rate and the potential price tag behind any given influencer.

In short, TapInfluence highlights relevant influencer metrics in black and white so brands can better understand whether or not a potential relationship makes sense prior to outreach.

TapInfluence provides eye-opening insights regarding an influencer's reach and engagement rate

Influencer campaigns shouldn’t be a black hole of ROI. In addition to individual influencer metrics, the platform also measures the performance of overall campaigns against industry benchmarks.

TapInfluence's reporting compares your brand's influencer campaigns to industry benchmarks


Although not strictly a social tool, BuzzSumo is an awesome resource for analyzing the social engagement of any given piece of content.

If you want to see how many shares your latest blog post received on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, BuzzSumo can provide you with that data. You can also monitor the performance of content competing for relevant industry keywords, allowing you to see how your content marketing campaigns are stacking up against the competition.

BuzzSumo's analytics examine top-performing content for specific keywords

Social media remains one of the top distribution channels for content. By analyzing social shares, you can see which types of posts receive the most engagement and use that data to inform your own content strategy. BuzzSumo can also help you understand variables in top-performing content such as length, publish date and headline type.

 Zoho Social

Zoho Social

Zoho is a unique and powerful software suite that has CRM, collaboration, and other SaaS options that take care of your entire operational workflow. Zoho Social is the part that enables you to understand your social media audience and how they engage with you. You can listen to multiple channels from a single dashboard and respond in real-time. You can also dig deeper into each post to measure their reach and engagement.

3 cool features:

  • Create intuitive reports from a huge list of pre-defined segments based on demographics of your fans, influencers, or people reached.
  • Get a breakdown of the content formats that your connections are engaging with and compare it to those that you publish.
  • Compare fans vs. other people reached for every post.

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 15 days
    • Stats for individual posts
    • Analytics for content type, best time to post, etc.

Pricing options: $10, $25, $200, and $300 per month (annual pricing)

How to conduct a competitor analysis research and get insights?

You have your competitors and their social media links with basic info separated. It’s time to do the analysis. We recommend you start from content strategy analysis, which can make or break a social media strategy. Then move on to studying the engagement and the demographics.

1. Analyze social media content strategy

Related article: How to track and analyze competitors’ social media content strategy?

Take a closer look at your competitor’s content. Study their tone of voice and frequency of posting. Is it consistent? Also, take a look at their media content. Do they share videos, images, slides, and infographics? If yes, then how often? Do their visuals have a custom design?

As we can see, @hmhome shares all types of content consistently: images with shopping tags, videos, IGTV videos, highlighted stories. All the visuals are customized with a single scheme of colors and filled with coziness.

HM Home Instagram Account

2. Analyze competitors’ Facebook and Instagram ads

Study competitors’ ads to understand what works for them, their experiments, and how often they spend money. If possible, also take a look at the promoted content. tool can help you to uncover paid metrics of your competitors.

Ads are a good indicator of how each competitor is presenting itself to new audiences. All major social media platforms present free, first-party tools for everyone to see the pages’ ads. Facebook has its Ad Library, which you can also use to study Instagram Ads. Twitter offers the Ads Transparency Center. And LinkedIn has the tool integrated into its interface. You can see the Ads section on each company’s LinkedIn page, on the left sidebar.

Facebook Public Ads Directory Filter

3. How do followers engage with the competitors’ page? 

Check the number of likes and other reactions the posts are getting. On Facebook and LinkedIn, which let users react with different emojis, make sure to check which type of reactions they get the most. 

4. Monitor social engagement strategy

Take the time to study the comments people leave under the posts. Are they primarily positive or negative? How do people interact with the brand on social media? How does the brand handle the negative comments (if it receives any)?

HM Home Instagram Comment Reply

5. Take a look at demographic characteristics 

Study the accounts that follow and interact with the page on social media to get a general idea of the demographics your competitor can reach. Compare it to your buyer persona and understand whether you are targeting the right audience. You can either do this manually or use the tools listed below. 

6. Discover how the page has evolution

Go back to the beginnings of the company page and see how their page evolved over the years. Analyze their previous approaches and see how they compare to the current process. Is it more or less effective? Any content mistakes that you can learn and avoid?


Social media analytics is the practice of gathering data from social media websites and analyzing that data using social media analytics tools to make business decisions. The most common use of social media analytics is to mine customer sentiment to support marketing and customer service activities. Additional use of social media analytics is in employee monitoring and reputation management.

The implementation of social media in our daily lives can be traced to the early days of the internet where people were using chat rooms. The rooms allowed users to engage with one another and made it easier for them to connect online. The chat rooms opened up a whole new world of communication.

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