Social Influence is the measure of the actual number of times your business, brand or product etc is mentioned, viewed, talked about, shared or otherwise interacted with across all your social media channels.
The strength of social media is its ability to increase your total exposure, by for fans and followers activity, without you having to do anything. Once a critical mass of followers is reached, they tend to share and talk about a business spontaneously and this increases your exposure every time a new or existing user interacts with your social media.
So what to measure for exposure?
- Twitter – evaluate the number of impressions generated from your original content – don’t rely on the number of impressions from outside content as that isn’t exclusively your own.
- Facebook – take a look at your total reach – this is total reach includes friends of friends and news feed items that show up on the site of friends from your followers.
- YouTube – track your total channel views.
- LinkedIn – track the number of times your business has been searched for or displayed
You can’t have influence without exposure and influence is stronger than exposure
When starting your social media campaign a small business has to first focus upon exposure and then look at influence. Influence may be via advocates, other business or even the entire industry. Followers and fans that interact with your business via influence are more likely to buy, share and build a long lasting relationship than those that simply sought you out via exposure alone.
So what to measure for influence?
- Twitter – examine the monthly number of followers and the followers of those that retweet posts.
- Facebook – examine the total number of fans and friends of those that engage with your page after having been previously exposed.
- Google + – examine the total number of followers as well as Followers of those that +1.
- YouTube – measure the number of channel subscribers and number of embedded videos.
- LinkedIn – measure the total number of connections and total number of group users.