Social media is a great tool for growing a church plant community. But to have success using it, you need to monitor your metrics. Your metrics give you all the insight you need to guide your posts, interactions, and advertisements for maximum engagement and reach.
For instance, if you post a scripture quote with an image and it gets a lot of engagement, you’ll want to post more like it. But if you post your worship music list and it feels like you hear crickets chirping, you probably won’t want to post the same type of post without making some changes.
This willingness to adapt hinges on knowing how well your posts perform. Your metrics will guide you if you use them for insight.
That's why we wrote this blog post - to help you sort through the different social media metrics. If you want an overall rundown of these social networks, you can download our e-book to serve as a reference guide.
Facebook is the best network for connecting with people in your community and inviting them to your church plant. It’s also a great tool for keeping your community informed and engaged.
When it comes to metrics, Facebook has built-in analytics to guide your social media strategy. To access them, go to your Facebook page. Make sure you're an Admin of the page, and then click Insights at the top. More views are available on the next screen. Here are some of the metrics you'll want to pay attention to:
- Total Page Likes: This count should increase steadily over time. It’s not the single most important overall metric, but rather it’s an indication of the growing interest in your church plant and things posted on your Facebook page.
- Reach and Impressions: Your total reach and impressions tell you how wide reaching your posts are. "Reach" indicates how people see your content. "Impressions" is equal to Reach times the frequency those people have seen your content. Obviously the greater your reach, the better. Once you know your baseline, you can start to promote posts or run ads to increase your overall reach and impressions. You will see your post reach in the main Insights dash, but actual Impressions are seen in your Ads Manager.
- Post Shares, Likes, Comments: Looking at how often your posts are shared, liked, or commented on is an easy way to see what your audience enjoys reading or seeing. Plus, comments give you a great opportunity to engage with your followers. These metrics aren't listed as headers in your Facebook dashboard. You'll find them under the Engagement header.
- Events and RSVPs: Facebook makes it easy to create events and invite fans and followers. Once you create an event, each of your fans and followers is invited and given the option to RSVP “yes,” “no,” or “maybe.” From there you can see the running count of all RSVPs.
- Cost Per Click or Cost Per Impression: These metrics come into play when you run an ad or boost a post on Facebook. Cost per click takes into account how many times your ad was clicked as a way to reach to your website. The cost per impression is your cost per 1,000 impressions. You can view this metric in your Ads Manager.
To find your Twitter metrics, click your profile image in the top navigation and then select Analytics. From there you’ll find a top section highlighting your performance over the last 28-Days. You’ll see the following key metrics:
- Tweets and Tweet Impressions: This tells you your total number of tweets and appearances in follower’s newsfeeds.
- Profile Visits: How many people were interested enough in your church to check out your profile? Your total profile visits tell you.
- Mentions: Since a goal of social media is to build engagement, you want to interact with your followers. Your Mention metric tells you how many times someone used the @symbol to mention you. Like the Facebook comment option, this is a great place to comment back or engage with a follower.
- Followers: If you’re doing a good job building interest and engagement, your follower count will steadily climb.
Below the 28-Day summary, you will see monthly summaries for the following points:
- New Followers and total followers: This is the same as the metric found in your 28-Day summary, but it is solely for the month it’s reported. Looking at this number from a month-to-month standpoint, you might spot trends.
- Top tweet by month: For the month listed, what was your best performing tweet? This data point tells you so you can post more things like it.
- Top mention: Of all your monthly mentions, your top mention is the one that had the most interactions associated with it.
- Top follower: This is another interesting data point. Your top follower for the month is a new follower who has the biggest Twitter impact or following of their own.
Unlike the other two social networks we’ve discussed, Instagram doesn’t have metric reporting tools within the application. But you can download third party reporting and analytics apps to support the basics they do offer.
Here’s a quick run down of the metrics within Instagram:
- Followers: Within your profile page you can see how many people are following you and how many people you are following. Again, this isn’t the only metric you should follow, but it does indicate your growing Instagram presence.
- Likes and comments: To see how many likes and comments you’ve received per post, you’ll need to go to each post individually. From there you can see your likes and comments.
If you’re looking for a third-party application to provide more in-depth data, here are the most popular options:
As with so many things in life, you can’t effectively manage social media if you don’t keep an eye on the numbers. But monitoring the key social metrics is easy and will help you stay on track for success, which is reaching more people with your church plant.