In 2010 It's All About The Data
You've probably heard these buzzwords commonly used in the last few years when talking about social networks: analytics, metrics, trends, stats. And many of you are probably saying, "what does it all mean?" Simply put, it's the collection of data. For most, it makes little sense. However, if you spend time getting to know your data you can learn a lot about what is going on as well as what works and what doesn't.
In the olden days of the Internet (and still today) you got your web site's "statistics" from your ISP (Internet Service Provider). Many provide highly useful information like page views, hits, referrers, etc. I always enjoy knowing what sites are driving traffic to my pages and which pages are most popular.
Fast forward to today and now your stats are on steroids!
Many recent blog posts including Jason Feinberg's The Year in Digital Music and Predictions for 2010 talk about this being the year of analytics. There are sites cropping up to help you gather and decipher info. Plus many sites you're already on offer analytics. Sites like Facebook, ReverbNation and FanBridge collect a great deal of valuable data that can be quite useful to you.
Let's examine this further:
Facebook offer "Insights" which lets you know how users are interacting on your fan page. There is so much information in here it's almost overwhelming. You can see how many impressions you received during a particular period as well as how many new fans. You can see the breakdown in gender and age range plus top countries and cities. To access your insights, log into Facebook then click on Ad and Pages at the bottom of your page. Click on Pages then View Insights. Click here to learn more about Facebook's Insights
ReverbNation gives you a "Stats Summary" when you log in showing your band equity, new fans, daily plays and widget hits. You can then head over to the dedicated "Stats" page which is chock full of information. There is so much in there it will make your head spin!
FanBridge has been offering really nice "Campaign Analytics" for all their paid accounts. I have really enjoyed this feature and am able to effectively measure the success of each email campaign I send out. Now I know who's opening them, clicking on links, if they are forwarding the message, etc. I find this invaluable!
RockDex is a new service that I love. It's geared for artists, managers, labels and social networkers like me looking to track artists data from music web sites, blogs, tweets, song plays, etc. I have found this to be extremely valuable in tracking my social network clients success. I see RockDex becoming quite popular as the year progresses. It's currently in private beta but I encourage you to sign up so you'll be in line to jump on board what is sure to be one of the hits of 2010.
Collecta is an interesting new site I just discovered that provides almost real-time searches on Myspace that can be useful to when searching a particular topic or artist. I found this very helpful when researching one of my Myspace clients and saw that a fan added one of their songs to his personal profile. How would I have known otherwise? This is cool!
I'll be keeping an eye out for more cool sites and services that will help us analyze and understand our data. Analytics are headed for new heights. Let's use them to our advantage!
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Please feel free to post a comment.
Copyright © 2010 Madalyn Sklar
Madalyn Sklar is a music business coach & consultant, blogger, social networks expert and author. She has spent over 14 years helping independent musicians and music business professionals achieve greater success in the biz. Her motto is: working smarter not harder. She also founded GoGirlsMusic.com, the oldest + largest online community of indie women musicians.
You can reach Madalyn at MadalynSklar.com or madalynsklar AT gmail.com