With social media becoming such an important part in company communication strategies and with more jobs title like “social media manager” becoming available in more markets (I saw quite a couple recently originating from Belgium, Germany and the UK), it was about time to introduce an official “social media audit” practice day into the #KathoNewMedia course. After we spent some time clarifying the functions social media platforms would play (such as communication, multimedia sharing, rating and so on) and which promotional tool from the marketing mix would fit them better (choose from advertising, personal selling, public relations, direct marketing and sales promotions), we are spending today some time looking into how real companies use social media and their websites to communicate themselves online.

This is an exercise where we combine observation with social media metrics tools and analysis. We start from the websites. Today’s clients are: Engagor, a Belgium based social media monitoring platform, WeStartup, a Belgium based social network and community for and of entrepreneurs, The Hub, a space-based and online community for change makers to access the knowledge and tools they need to build solutions for social and environmental impact located in Brussels, Belgium and with worldwide contacts, and the University of the West of Scotland.

The tasks include:

  1. identifying the mission and vision of the company
  2. identifying the audience of the company through assumptions and observations of the website landing page
  3. identifying whether the company has any visible social media links on display on the main website (in the form of links, buttons or embeds)
  4. checking out the social media presences of the company and comparing their use with the general mission and vision of the company as well as identifying the audience that would be targeted through these means
  5. a more in-depth analysis of twitter using reach and influence scores as well as metrics about the company’s account activity (these include TweetStats, Klout, Archivist and more)
  6. drafting recommendations for an improved online communication strategy (if needed) based on previous observations.

Stay tuned for what the students come up with!