More than half of the global population uses social media channels. Millions of social media users spend over 2 hours on social media every day. They click, like, comment, scroll, and perform many other activities on social media.
All these activities can be tracked and used to drive a business forward. And this is what a social media analyst is hired to do. An analyst gathers, analyzes, and understands social data and then uses it to improve the overall social media performance of the company he is working for.
A social media analyst plays many roles in a company. Read the article to learn about these roles in detail.
What exactly is a social media analyst?
As the name indicates, a social media analyst is responsible for analyzing content and campaign metrics and deducing conclusions from the metrics data. They use the data to determine the success rate of a campaign or content strategy.
If a campaign has failed to generate the promised results, the social media analyst will suggest suitable changes to improve campaign performance.
Similarly, if daily posts do not show improvement in engagement, the analyst will find solutions/ways of increasing engagement and then share those solutions with the content creators to help them create more effective content.
They understand how each social media platform works and how each channel can impact content performance and audience behavior.
Roles & responsibilities
A social media analyst helps businesses grow by playing the following important roles in a company.
Monitor different social media profiles
A social media analyst regularly monitors different activities of all business profiles of the company. He tracks and manages metrics, which helps him understand how people are responding to current campaigns and posts. He establishes a social media monitoring strategy to improve his social media game.
Make data-driven decisions
The analyst tracks campaigns and content to analyze their performance. He helps content, digital, and social strategy creators determine which approach will work the best for them. If a content creator cannot decide whether to use a certain kind of content or not, a social media analyst will provide him with the data and proven recommendations to help him make a data-driven decision.
He just does not come and say, “images will derive more traffic.’ In fact, he shows performance patterns and proven examples, and then uses his years of knowledge to make suggestions.
Investigate the results
A social media analyst understands data of a failed strategy and finds the “why.” He digs deeper into the data to find why content is generating this result.
He may go through customer messages and comments to understand their current sentiments towards the brand. He compares their current sentiments with their past feelings toward the brand to find what really changed over time that gradually turned high engagement into poor engagement.
Support SMM strategies
A social media marketing strategy (SMM) is a plan of action that is designed to achieve short-term and long-term marketing goals of the company. When it has been planned and executed, an analyst observes its important metrics to guide the actions of content and marketing teams based on whether the strategy is succeeding or failing.
He tells them what needs to be “changed,” what needs to be “removed” entirely, and what needs to be “kept” as it is to make the strategy work better.
Predict results and turn ideas into reality
Social media platforms are constantly changing at a breakneck pace. Due to this reason, it often becomes difficult for marketers to create a strategy for the next five to six months when they do not know what will happen the next day or which new trend will emerge in a week.
This is where the social data comes to help.
With the help of social data, an analyst removes doubts and allows strategists to turn their ideas into reality. He supports their ideas with proven data.
He observes the current patterns, tracks how different content types engage an audience, and observes the way a single content type performs on different social channels. By using this information, he helps marketing and content teams create more targeted content and strategies.
Conduct a thorough competitive analysis
A social media analyst does not just focus on his company, but he also keeps an eye on competitors. In order to see where you stand in the market, you need to compare your performance and results with the competitors.
Running a competitive analysis tells you many things, including:
- Is your strategy effective for this industry?
- Where are the gaps in your content and marketing strategies?
- How can you adjust your strategies to stand out from the crowd?
Analysts use different tools to generate reports on competitors’ data. They present these reports to teams to let them know what they need to improve to succeed.
Improve post engagement and campaign results
When social media analysts find out that post engagement is gradually decreasing over time, they try to find the reason behind the issue. They check if it is the content, design, graphics, or some other underlying problem. They get to the root of the issue and find the real cause.
Once the cause has been identified, they offer suitable solutions to the team. They track metrics of the changed content as well to see if their recommendation is beneficial or if something else needs to be changed.
Their main objective is to increase online reach and improve public response to content and campaigns.
Research social media trends
Social media analysts stay active and up-to-date. They have good online research skills, which they use to find new trends and techniques that people are using to gain the public’s trust and interest. They incorporate those trends and techniques into their marketing and content strategies to make sure their content stays fresh, and they are not left behind in their market.
Bring all team members together
Social media analysts don’t just wait for the team members to come and ask for the data. Instead, they invite content creators, strategists, marketers, and even stakeholders to the meeting and share data or findings in a way that everyone understands the technical stuff and finds out the problem.
Requirements & skills
Here are the basic requirements and skills of a social media analyst.
- A social media analyst should have hands-on experience in handling multiple social media profiles and tracking multiple posts and campaigns at once.
- They should know how to measure the success of a campaign, so they can make sure they are investing their money and time in the right direction and for the right people.
- They should be able to create reports and represent complex data in such a way that anyone reading them can understand what the results say.
- They should know how to set realistic campaign goals, and then track the campaign to see if it is going towards those goals or not.
- They should have excellent communication skills, so they can share data results and discuss the issues, ideas, and solutions with teams in a clear and understandable manner. Their written and verbal communication skills will allow them to talk to customers, stakeholders, strategists, influencers, marketers, and other professionals to improve overall performance of the company.
- They should be able to give constructive criticism. Their words should not let others feel degraded. Instead, their words should be motivating to allow others to do better next time.
- They should have good online research skills, so they can research the market and competitors to see where they are lacking or which areas need to be improved. They should be aware of the most reliable competitive research tools, so they can operate them to gather authentic data to create reports.
- A social media analyst has problem-solving skills. He investigates the problem thoroughly to find the underlying cause. Once the issue has been identified, he provides proven and data-driven solutions to improve social media strategy and its performance over time.
- A social media analyst should know the best search engine optimization (SEO) practices, so he can help with the ranking of content. He should know what the keyword research is and what role keywords play on a social media channel.
- He should keep himself updated. He should be aware of the new tools, features, and techniques that are being introduced in the market, and his competitors are using them to boost their overall performance. He should be adaptable and adjust his strategies according to the changing trends and user behavior.
Social media analyst salary in the US
According to Glassdoor data, the average total annual salary of a social media analyst in the US is $66,744 as of May 2022. It is the sum of the base salary, which is $52,686 per year, and the additional salary, which is $14,058 per year.
Salaries of social media analysts can range from $21,169 to $238,700, depending on their experience, skill set, location, and the organization they are working for.
What tools do social media analysts use?
Social media analysts use tools for analysis and report creation, so they can save time and do something more productive in that time. Here is a list of the popular tools that social media analysts use to do the math.
- Google Analytics
- Sprout Special
- Channelview Insights
- Hootsuite Analytics
Career paths for social media analysts
A social media analyst knows a variety of skills, which opens many career paths for him. If a social media analyst ever decides to change his career, he can choose any career from the following career options.
- Data analyst
- Data research analyst
- Market analyst
- Product analyst
- Pricing analyst
- Social media consultant
- Social media marketing analyst
Is social media analyst a good career?
Social media careers, including social media analysts, provide many opportunities to people who want to earn an above-average salary or work independently. If you have good data analysis skills and you know how to prepare professional and easy-to-understand reports, you might be a good candidate for this role.
Social media analyst interview questions
What role does SEO play in increasing traffic?
This question is asked to check your SEO-related knowledge and see whether you know the effective SEO practices or not. In its answer, you should mention the benefits of SEO and how it allows you to draw in visitors by improving your ranking in the search results.
Which tools do you use to conduct keyword research?
There is a wide variety of keyword research tools available on the market. Some are free, while others are paid. However, not all tools are reliable.
You should know which tools give the most authentic results, so you can name some of them and let the interviewer know you use them for keyword research. Some examples of reliable keyword research tools are Ahrefs Keyword Explorer, Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, Keywords Everywhere, and Moz Keyword Explorer.
How do you check your competitor’s content strategy?
This question will show whether you have good online research skills or not. You can tell the interviewer that you use multiple ways to understand competitors’ content strategies.
Some of these ways could be: You track their social media presence regularly; you sign up to receive their email updates; you review their best-performing posts; you monitor changes to their business profiles.
Which metrics show the failure of a social media campaign?
As a social media analyst, you should know which metrics determine the success or failure of a social media campaign. The most important metrics that gauge the failure or success of a campaign include:
- Overall traffic.
- Cost per lead.
- Projected ROI.
- Audience growth rate.
- Click-through rate (CTR).
- Customer satisfaction (CSat) score.
Social media analysts are storytellers. They don’t give numbers; instead, they tell a story. They explain complicated data like a story, so that every person in the team, whether it is the marketer, photographer, or designer, can understand the data easily.
Analysts are problem solvers and, they have amazing research skills, which they use to find the actual cause of problems and suggest the best possible solutions to improve the performance of marketing and content strategies.