You know how much I love to talk about social PR, right? At the heart of social PR lies community. So that’s what we focused on for the April #measurePR Twitter chat; how to measure community, how to tell when community-building initiatives are working (and when they’re not), and how community-focused metrics might change over time.
Experts in measuring community
I figured there could be no better guests for this topic than two of my favorite ladies: Hoop.la Founder Rosemary O’Neill, and Solo PR Pro Founder Kellye Crane. Now, especially if you work in the PR field, you may be familiar with #soloPR (and the excellent Twitter chats); you may not be as familiar with Hoop.la, but it’s a really excellent online community software platform. So especially if that functionality is something you’re investigating for your company or client, it is really worth taking a look at.
Disclosures: both are friends (d’oh), and I have access to premium content on the Solo PR Pro site. But even if I didn’t, I’d still have asked them to be the guests for the chat, because that’s how awesome they are!
Here’s some of what we talked about:
On why community management and relations are appealing:
A1: At its heart, this field (community) is about people, and I LOVE people. Also keeps me on my toes daily. #measurepr
A1: Building a community around a product or service is just part of our jobs in #PR today (which is great, because it’s fun!). #measurepr
Both Hoop.la and Solo PR Pro are successful when they help communities succeed and grow. Naturally, I was curious whether the ladies had set any goals for success when they started their respective companies.
Kellye admitted to having changed her goals several times over the course of SPP, now focusing on one main mantra based upon results:
A4: So for me, the primary goals are simple – provide value to attract new members and keep the ones we have. #measurepr
The Goddess of Measurement, Katie Paine, chimed in with some words of wisdom for Kellye:
@KellyeCrane As I like to say: measure what matters. #measurepr
SeeDepth Inc. also provided encouraging words to Kellye:
And changing goals is ok @KellyeCrane – that’s why we measure: to repeat what’s working and pivot from what isn’t! Good work! #measurepr
Rosemary shared Hoop.la’s initial goals:
A4: We launched @gethoopla 4 yrs ago, initial goals were to build relationships, do outreach. A lot of commenting, networking. #measurepr
She also stressed the importance of measurement:
A4c: If I weren’t tracking, I’d never know that Quora is one of our biggest social referral segments! #measurepr
Quora! Who knew!
Of course, I had to ask about specific tools Rosemary and Kellye recommend.
A7: Google Alerts, @Mention, & @Talkwalker to track news about my customers/community members. Listening is key. #measurepr
A7: It’s the easy answer, but Google Analytics on your site or blog can show you the “Behavior Flow” of visitors. #measurepr
Community member Matthew Hurst chimed in:
.@shonali q7: I made an IFTTT recipe to track brand mentions and links on Reddit since there aren’t great tools for that site yet #measurepr
IFTTT really is a great way to systematize some of the tracking you want to do (especially if you don’t have the kind of budget you’d like). So I asked Matt to send over that IFTTT recipe for all y’all, which he did (blame the “all y’all” on my recent excursions to The South), as well as one that sends an alert when your company is mentioned on Techmeme. Thank you, Matt! And everyone else, say “thank you” too, ‘cos you just got some kewl IFTTT recipes without having to work very hard for them!
Remember how last week we were talking about how community is really what powers successful content marketing? Rosemary wrote this great post a while back on some possible KPIs (key performance indicators) for an online community; it’s really good, so definitely check it out. And if you want to relive the fun, check out the #measurePR transcript for April 14.
May #measurePR event announcement
Next month’s #measurePR chat will take place on Tuesday, May 12, 12-1 p.m. E.T. with one of my fave DC-area writers, bloggers, practitioners and influencers, Maddie Grant, who co-authored the new (and excellent) book, When Millennials Take Over. She’ll be joined by CEO of Menlo Innovations and author of Joy, Inc. Richard Sheridan.
We’ll be talking about how the changing workplace – with the influx of Millennials – is changing what’s expected of PR and the metrics thereof. This is really going to be a different #measurePR chat, so I do hope you’ll make it. Please save the date, RSVP here, and share with your communities as widely as you can!