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Team Lewis

Published on

March 1, 2022


content marketing, digital, marketing, social media

As Dale Carnegie famously said in How to Win Friends and Influence People, "it's not about you." The same can be said for content in your digital marketing efforts. If your strategy is too self-serving for a product or brand, your target audience won’t respond well. Similarly, if the message look and feel are outdated, out of touch, or just not relevant to contemporary needs, no one will engage with it. So, whether they know it or not, every brand wants their message to resonate with what their audience is thinking, feeling, and talking about.

Man on cell phone checking social media

Why is conducting a social media content audit so important? Social media is a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of what’s happening now, particularly what your target audience is thinking and what your competitors are saying. When a brand leverages a social media listening tool, you gain valuable insight from a sentiment analysis that monitors customer sentiment on social conversations. For example, your team can get detailed data on  which topics are relevant and what messages are resonating with your target audience, then you can take those critical learnings back to your content plan and integrate your brand into that conversation.

What is Social Media Listening?

Social listening is the process of monitoring conversations across multiple social media platforms such as Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, and X, using social listening tools to gain valuable insights on brand reputation. Social listening is important to surface what people are saying about brands, products, customer service, customer experience, related industry topics, and industry pain points. Having a good social listening strategy encompasses taking that insight and applying it to your marketing campaigns. If you listen long enough, that social data gives your team actionable insights on how to deliver a social media marketing strategy that could help an organization differentiate from competitors, to improve brand reputation, or to produce content that is timely and topical.

Top Social Media Listening Tools:

  • Sprout Social
  • Meltwater
  • Buzz Sumo
  • Brandwatch
  • Hootsuite
  • Talkwalker

Why Your Social Media Audit Should Include Social Listening

When you leverage a social listening strategy you can tap into what both the industry has to say in the social sphere (these are your main competitors) as well as perceived thought leaders and influencers within the space. Understanding these social conversations from what they’re saying, how they’re phrasing it, and to whom they address in their posts will help guide and shape the new social media content campaigns you craft moving forward. Your marketing teams should also leverage the new social listening data to analyse old content to refresh, the way you frame issues and have conversations on social media, and even the headlines and URLs you use moving forward. This is important, since “it’s not about you”. Using social listening tools also help identify whitespace, areas of opportunity where your brand can engage in thought leadership, stand out from competitors, and lead the conversation, to drive additional value.

What is a Social Media Audit?

A social media audit is a key component in your brand’s content marketing strategy and ladders back into the company’s wider business goals. The goal of a social media audit is to help provide an analysis to identify what is working is well, look for opportunities, and to see how your content is matching up with your audience. You’ll also want to look at your competitors and conduct a S.W.O.T. analysis to compare strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. 

When you perform a social media audit, not only will you look for how well each piece is performing, you’ll also learn to understand whether your content marketing is in alignment with your customer personas, marketing funnel, and overall business goals. Other objectives should be to take the time to scope out what’s being said by competitors, how they position and frame certain topics, and whether they’re getting more engagement or traffic on their content than yours.

Social media audit checklist

  • Social listening- Conduct social listening of competitors and broader industry conversations – Analyze competitor social channels and industry conversations to identify emerging trends to engage with and discover potential areas of differentiation from competitors.
  • Analyze all social media channels – round up all the social media profiles that are out there. You’ll want to run an analysis of how filled out each profile is and look for opportunities to optimize further. Make sure there is a defined and cohesive branding strategy.
  • Social media performance– Take a look at performance and engagement. Get a feel for what your top posts are and why.
  • Brand voice and tone – Does your social media content match your brand voice and tone? If not, take a closer look at what’s not matching up and understand what changes need to be implemented in order to align messaging with your brand identity.

When Should You Conduct a Social Media Content Audit?

Social media audits aren’t just for those moments when you’re bringing on a new content strategist or agency. Even if you’re a well-oiled content marketing machine, it’s worth checking in to see what’s performing well and what’s missing so you can schedule it for production in the coming months, quarter, or year.

As you plan future social media campaigns, you’ll want to plan to promote content from other channels, specifically content that is developed in your SEO strategy. Leverage any SEO specific content ideas for a social first campaign activation to really get the most miles out of your content.

What You’ll Need for Your Audit

Before you begin, connect with your team to decide what questions you want answered in this audit. Additionally, vocalize the business goals you hope to achieve with your content moving forward. Understanding your questions and goals before diving into any analysis will help you create an audit template to guide your process.

To conduct a content audit, you need a few key components. First, you’ll need a sitemap so you can understand where all your content lives. Next, you’ll need access to your marketing funnel and persona descriptions so that you can decide whether each piece of content maps to an ideal customer or a particular stage of their customer journey (from awareness to post-sales).

To conduct a social media content audit, you’ll need access to your brand’s social media profiles and the tools used to analyze key metrics. If your brand doesn’t have a third-party posting platform that measures your target metrics, tap into the analytics platforms within each of your social media platforms. Yes, you’ll have to exercise your excel skills to organize your analytics, but this is still an accurate way of measuring results. As you review your social media analytics, be sure to work with your team to identify the metrics that are most important to your team, such as engagement rate or new follower counts. Another important aspect of your social profiles to consider is who is currently connected to your social networks? Do your followers match your buyer personas? Are you working with relevant influencers to reach a greater audience? If the answer to any of these questions is no, you’ll need to shift your strategy to attract relevant followers to your social accounts. But that’s not all – if you’re not currently including social listening in your content audit, then you’re missing out on some key benefits.

Woman working

Thinking Past Your Social Media Audit

You should consider using social auditing and social listening data to inform the stories you tell with your social media efforts and in your editorial calendar to stay relevant, topical, fresh, and to share your perspective in trending industry conversations.

Lastly, know your audit is never complete. Revisit your social media audit template on a quarterly basis to consistently monitor your content performance and, most importantly, your growth. Part of auditing your social content includes reviewing your overall social media strategy. Again, work off your social media audit template to review all of your social profiles as well as your competitors’ social media presence. Be consistent in your audits to ensure your social media efforts have a targeted approach, rather than posting just for the sake of posting.

What happens after you’ve finished auditing your content strategy and social accounts? It’s time to move on to a website content audit. But don’t worry, we’ll cover this topic in a future blog.


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