5 Tips to Excel at End of the Year Reporting

Every year’s end comes with end of the year reporting—a time to recap the year, highlight successes, and plan from the year ahead. But how can you be sure you’re reporting efficiently and on the things that matter most? As a Product Coach at Spredfast, my job is to show users how to get the most out of our product in free sessions. As a former Senior Analyst on the strategy team, I also helped customers specifically with end-of-the-year reporting: in other words, I’ve been there, I hear you, and I want to help.

As you settle into 2019 and finish your review of 2018, feel free to use the following tips, which I’ve compiled based on experience and frequently asked questions from Spredfast users:

Tip 1: Determine Your KPIs

Determining your KPIs is typically the first step for any type of reporting, but it’s particularly important for end of the year reporting. KPIs should be the success indicators reflecting the part of the business social “owns,” and should be the focus of your report. A hint? They’re likely already part of your regular reporting. If you’re looking for information around which KPIs to use, our webinar Analytics Overload: Which Social Metrics Matter Most can provide additional guidance. Also, rates related to these KPIs, if not already included, can be helpful in assessing changes year over year. For example, looking not just at engagement but engagement divided by impressions as an engagement rate, year over year, can provide more context.

The KPIs you report on at the end of the year are likely already a part of your regular reporting.

 

Tip 2: Start Big, Get Small

Start by looking at KPI changes year over year for all channels combined, and then move into specifics for each channel and account. This approach will help identify the content driving those changes. Consider differences in post quantity, impressions and metrics related to your KPIs, such as different types of engagement. Spredfast Conversations provides this information in a consolidated view, showing period over period changes in text widgets and configurable channel and account tables. Additionally, click-in functionality shows the posts connected to each data point.

Tip 3: Get Focused

Once year over year changes have been assessed, use the same approach within the current year. Identify the channels and content best serving your KPIs, as well as the content that works best within each channel. Categorizing content in your editorial calendar can assist with this task. In Spredfast Conversations this can be done through labels that can be viewed in relation to metrics as part of a stand-alone widget or as filters highlighting specific data and posts.

Tip 4: Look Elsewhere

It’s not only your own content and metrics that can provide important insight that can shape next year’s strategy. Outside of content performance, look to competitors and social comments to inform strategy and reveal content gaps. In Spredfast, labels can also be used to categorize social comments and show volumes as part of Care Dashboards.

Editor’s note: Want to learn a specific strategy to get ahead of trends using social data, to find out what people will be talking about next—and what they’re talking about for 2019? Check out our latest Smart Social Report: How to Tap Into Trendsetters to Anticipate the Next Big Thing.

Tip 5: Look Forward

The data collected and insights gleaned from this reporting lay the foundation for the year ahead by informing changes and new approaches to social strategy, as well as goals and benchmarks used to assess performance. For Spredfast users, this is particularly important, since legacy analytics are being replaced by new and more robust offerings. If you’re using Spredfast and are in need of some assistance with new analytics feel free to sign up for a Product Coaching session.

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Emma is a Spredfast veteran with over eight years of experience in Social Analytics. She currently acts as a Product Coach, helping customers better understand how to use software to achieve their Social Care and Marketing goals.