Whether you’re a freelancer working with businesses to help them carve a niche or a big social media management firm catering to multiple clients, you will need to create kickass social media reports to convince clients and potential buyers that you have what it takes to generate buzz.
The purpose of a social media report is to answer all questions a user may have about performance including the number of posts, the kind of response generated, etc.
In this article, we’ll talk about the key elements of a social media report to help you know how to create and read one. Moreover, we’ll also look at some ready-to-use templates.
Let’s get started:
What Are the Key Elements of a Social Media Report
Here are some elements that you must include in your social media report for it to look complete:
1. An introduction
Keep it short and include important pointers including a summary of your goals, tactics, success metrics, and strategy.
2. A campaign snapshot
Provide snapshots of campaigns – weekly, monthly, depending on your requirements – for each channel. The snapshot should contain information on metrics such as:
- Number of posts
- Brand mentions
- Cost per thousand ad impressions (CPM)
- Post reach
- Number of video views – if applicable
- Number of shares
- Number of likes
- Number of comments
- New followers
- Click-through rate (CTR)
- Cost per click (CPC)
3. Data tracking
This is where you will include all the numbers and visual representations of your data.
Consider providing past figures for context. They’ll help measure performance and understand how well a campaign or strategy is doing.
Here are a few key performance indicators (KPIs) to include in this section:
- Number of profile views
- Number of posts
- Followers loss or gain
- Post reach
- Engagement rate (Number of shares, likes, and comments divided by the Number of total post views)
- Top posts – based on engagement rate and/or reach
- Number of clicks to website/landing pages
- Number of story and video views
You can include more information based on the purpose of the report. For example, if you’re working on a paid campaign then consider including the following:
- Number of leads
- Number of conversions
- Ad spent
- Total revenue generated
- Return On Marketing Investment (ROMI)
ROMI = Amount You Made / Amount You Paid to get it (resources, ad costs, shipping, discounts, etc.)
Consider using dashboards with graphics, charts, and tables so that the report is easy to read and comprehend.
4. Additional textual information
The numbers may not always be enough. Make sure to keep space for information that’s important and relevant but cannot be converted into numbers. This includes valuable testimonials, connections with influencers, etc.
5. Your analysis
Once you’ve presented all the data, it’s time to analyze it and tell your readers what it actually means.
Instead of merely mentioning the growth in engagement, explain how you generated it and how it benefits the campaign. Consider comparing results with past performance to provide context.
Also, this is the section where you explain why you focused on a specific element, i.e: why you made x number of posts in a day and how this decision benefited the campaign.
This section can also link to the previous report and explain if you’ve been able to achieve your goals or not with reasons if you failed and key achievements if you succeeded.
6. Future plans – your recommendations
This section explains what you intend to do in the future, i.e: do you intend to make more posts or fewer posts, why you’re heading in this direction, and what kind of results you expect by doing so.
Social Media Report Templates to Get Started
Creating your own social media template can be tricky especially if you’ve never done it before. It’s best that you stick to ‘ready to use’ templates from known names like Buffer and SEMRush.
We’ve explained them below for you:
Social Media Report Template by Buffer
Buffer is a marketing tool that helps you manage your content publication and campaigns across all social media networks from a single place.
The report provides a clear snapshot view of the last 7 days of stats. It’s designed for Buffer but also supports Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. You can import data to get a clear picture of how your posts are performing and know more about the impact of social engagement.
It shows valuable information including posts, mentions, potential, clicks, and total interactions. The report highlights the top 5 posts of the week in terms of engagement to help you know which posts are doing well.
The formulas are ready to use and are best suited for weekly reports as it pulls 7 days of data at a time. You can also analyze older data but the report may require some changes.
Make sure to keep your data formatted correctly – month/day/year – otherwise, you may run into trouble.
The report shows data in a graphical format that makes it easy to read and compare. If your customers are more comfortable with printed reports, that can be done easily with this tool.
Social Media Performance Template by SEMRush
SEMrush is an online marketing tool that helps you monitor your SEO, social media, ads performance and allows you to compare your stats against your competitors’.
You can create a Social Media Performance report by going to the My Reports section in your account.
This report can be great if you want to compare your performance to your competitors’ and gauge how you’re doing. It shows data in a graphical format so that it is very easy to comprehend.
The report contains valuable information including competitor audience, activity, and engagement.
The report provides action points to prepare next week’s plan based on the performance of the last 10 weeks.
It’s made to highlight changes including an increase or reduction in engagement and audience. You will also find some infographics that make it easier to compare figures including performance metrics.
Social Media Report Template by Slidebean
Slidebean is an online document and presentation design tool for all departments and use cases: pitch decks, webinar presentations, client proposals, etc. Including, of course, social media reports templates.
This template presents a pretty exhaustive social media report template. It’s very clean and looks very professional. You will quickly be able to present the following key performance indicators:
- Reach: The report highlights everything from total reach to typical reach for a week, 2 weeks, and a month.
- Outcome: A single glance will tell you how many posts you’ve made in a specific period of time and how you’re doing compared to your average figures.
- Top performing posts: The report shows top posts and highlights factors such as data, likes, content, mentions, clicks, potential, and engagement. A growth is highlighted in blue and a fall is highlighted in red so that you can easily see how you’re doing.
While the report is easy to scan through, it isn’t as customizable as some of the other reports discussed in this article. It helps you prioritize metrics that are important but neglects some important points including the ability to import data.
All reports mentioned above are great options to communicate your social media performance to your customers, but they’re limited to social media stats. If you want to go further into the marketing performance analysis, you need to take all channels into account. For instance, they might be interested in comparing the performance of their social media ads and their search ads on Google or comparing the revenue generated by sponsored vs. organic posts on social media. These reports can’t answer this question. In this case, you might want to take a look at a business intelligence (BI) software that combines data from your social media, Google Analytics, CRM, or e-commerce systems into a single dashboard.
Show Customers Your Real Value With a BI Platform
Business intelligence (BI) tools allow you to connect, blend, and visualize data from multiple sources and turn it into valuable information. Using a BI tool with your customers will allow you to make more informed recommendations on how to improve their social media strategy.
BI Softwares not only allows you to automate social media reporting but also lets you blend data from different sources (social media, Google Analytics, CRM system, e-commerce platforms, and others) to build a single source of truth to truly measure the performance of your marketing efforts.
ClicData is one of the BI platforms you can easily use with your customers. Our software supports most popular social media networks including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube and other apps you have in your marketing toolbox such as Google Analytics, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, MailChimp, HubSpot, and many more.
Our app is designed to break data silos and bring all information into a single platform. ClicData offers interactive and agile reports and data that can be exported to your desired template so that you don’t have to do any manual work. You can also share live and interactive dashboards online with live links with your boss and customers.
ClicData also offers powerful automation tools to automate your data refreshes so you don’t have to worry about updating it manually, which is highly time-consuming and error-prone.
You can also set up automatic alerts when critical thresholds are reached to keep you updated in real-time and take actions right away.
Your reports will be ready for presentation just when you need it. About 83 % of marketers are already looking for ways to automate social media management, with tools like ClicData, even reporting can be automated. This will leave you with more time to analyze data and make plans to improve your ROI.
Social media reports are an important part of your content marketing strategy. If you use social media like Instagram for business because you’re a freelancer looking for new clients or a professional marketing agency managing your clients’ social networks, you must have access to the latest figures so you can plan accordingly.
The purpose of a social media report is to answer questions and help you make the right call. A report should be skimmable, answer all relevant questions, be easy to read, and contain true information presented in a neat manner with the help of graphs and charts.
We have covered a variety of options in this list, choose what fits you the best.
About the Author
Max Benz is head of content at Filestage and loves analyzing data to derive decisions and actions. On the side, he’s running a German remote job board, remote-job.net.