Apr 22 2 Free Tools to Help Research Your Brand’s Social Media Audience
Developing good social content relies on having a strong understanding of your audience. Unfortunately, running an extensive audience analysis to help guide your social strategy can cost big bucks. Luckily, there are some free tools that can help you learn more about your audience and optimize your social media content. Whether you are looking to analyze your current audience or learn more about your target audience, these tools are a great place to start.
Available free to all advertisers on Twitter (which, typically just means you’ve attached a credit card to your account), Twitter Analytics provides a fairly robust amount of audience information. Head to analytics.twitter.com from your handle and select “Audiences” from the top bar. If your audience is large enough, you can see demographic information, including occupation, income, gender, location, and plenty more. Twitter also shares top interests, and sorts followers into lifestyle and consumer behavior categories.
You can also compare your followers to other audiences to see how your current audience might differ from your ideal audience. Or you can compare how your followers behave in a way that is different from Twitter users as a whole; these types of insights can help inform your content strategy.
This is an example of an audience comparison between a client’s current followers and Twitter users as a whole. From the results, we see that our followers are significantly more likely to be interested in shopping than Twitter users on average and that 73% of them report an interest in this category. An income comparison shows that our current followers are in lower income categories than most Twitter users. So we can plan content that appeals to value shoppers knowing that’s where our audience is more likely to be interested.
Facebook Audience Insights
Another great free audience analysis tool is Facebook Audience Insights. This tool is available at https://www.facebook.com/ads/audience-insights/. When logged in as an admin of your page you can begin by filtering via the left hand column to your desired settings. Then, the fun begins. The first tab, “Demographics” shows how your selected audience compares to Facebook as a whole, reporting on Age, Gender, Lifestyle, Relationship Status, Education and Job Title. Tab two, “Page Likes” shows the top categories and pages that your selected audience likes; you may notice that your audience is really into a certain product or cause that helps inform your content plans. Other tabs reveal more useful information, including purchase behavior and spending methods.
If you’d like to investigate a very particular subset of your audience, you can also check out the “advanced” tab on the left hand menu; you can filter by categories like education and relationship status. Other handy options for this tool include uploading custom audiences and analyzing competitor audiences.
While this overview only scratches the surface of the uses for these tools, both are fairly easy to use even for the analytics novice. A nice benefit of this free information is that you can record your audience insights at regular intervals, rather than paying for a one-time analysis or continuous monitoring. If your audience changes as your social following grows, you can update your strategy to appeal to your new followers. Also, if you consider your current Twitter or Facebook fans your core audience, insights from these audience analysis tools can help inform your social strategy across platforms.