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How to optimize your hashtag strategy & analyzing your 8-Post Hashtag Challenge results.
Firstly, a massive congratulations for getting to this point, it’s definitely not an easy task. You’ve already put yourself ahead of the competition simply by getting to this point, because you’re taking the time to build a strategy based on data, rather than simply guessing.
This module is a little different, due to the infancy of Flick's Analytics Suite there will be additional content being added here in the future - this is why the videos here are hosted by Loic, not Ben.
Before we get started, It’s important to highlight that whilst the 8-Post Hashtag Challenge is an amazing starting point, it’s definitely not the end of the journey. It’s similar to a first date, you’re going to get a really good idea on what the person is like, how compatible you are and if they’re worth pursuing, but it won’t guarantee that they’re the person you’re going to marry. That part is up to you, and what you’ll be learning in this module.
Ready to get stuck into some nitty-gritty data?
Like any good marketing strategy, analytics are essential when it comes to monitoring your hashtag performance, and improving your current plan. But often, whether you are a creator, Social Media Marketing Manager, small business, or agency it can be hard to determine what to measure and where to start, especially when there is little information out there.
Here are the three essential KPIs you should be considering when it comes to measuring (and improving) your hashtag strategy.
Before jumping into this section, we wanted to remind you that you should always look at the data you have in front of you with a pinch of salt - especially if you've only used a hashtag a couple of times.
Your data will change the more you use a hashtag, but that's a good thing. The more times you've used a hashtag, the more confident you can be in the data you're getting back. Use the data to guide your decisions, but don't let it disable you.
The number of times you have used a hashtag, vs. the number of times you rank on that hashtag (available in Flick).
This metric is excellent in helping you understand how reliable a hashtag in terms of your ability to rank. If you rank on a hashtag 80% of the times you've used it, it's a lot more reliable than one that you rank on 20% of the time.
This is the number of Impressions your post gained directly from the hashtags used (available on Instagram only). We’re unable to show this in Flick because it’s not available through Instagram's API.
The holy grail of hashtag performance metrics! Hashtag Impressions are the direct ROI of your work. However, reviewing this can be a little tricky because Instagram shows you the results for all of the hashtags used, rather than each hashtag individually. If you've ranked on 20/30 hashtags you've used and you're not happy with the number of Impressions you're getting back, you'll know that you need to use some more competitive tags that might bring in a higher number of impressions - do keep in mind the trade-off between the ease of ranking and the return you're likely to receive.
Your Average Best Rank will tell you the position you rank on average on a given hashtag (across the number of times you have used it). Again, the more times you use a hashtag, the more accurate the data is (available in Flick).
This metric should help you determine how well you're ranking on a hashtag. If you're consistently ranking in the top 9, this is a lot more beneficial to you than ranking, for example, consistently 73rd.
Couple this metric up with your ranking ratio to uncover your top-performing hashtags!
We've outlined one way you can review your results, but feel free to adjust or change this to something that works best for you and your account. This is a starting point to help you with your optimization journey!
The best way to extract insights from data is by starting with what questions you're trying to answer, then defining the metrics that will help us get those answers.
Using Flick's Analytics Suite will help you get these answers!
When looking at your results, you'll have to define what is 'good' or 'bad' based on the results you've achieved - these are always relative to you.
Reliable tags: Which hashtags can I rely on to provide reasonable returns?
Hashtags I frequently rank on when I use them (Rank Ratio)
Hashtags I'm ranking in an ok/good position on (Avg Best Rank)
Low Performance: Which hashtags have not provided any value?
Hashtags I haven't ranked on at all or have very low Rank Ratio compared to my other tags (Rank Ratio)
Hashtags that are ranking in a very low position (Avg best rank)
You may want to remove these hashtags from your Collections and find replacements, based on the patterns you've seen from your more reliable, high return hashtags.
Wildcards: Which hashtags aren't too reliable but can provide high returns?
Hashtags that I'm ranking on sometimes (Rank Ratio)
Hashtags I'm ranking in an ok/good position on (Avg. Best Rank)
Hashtags that are popular in my niche (High Dapc/Media count)
You may want to keep these in a separate collection and use 3-5 of them on your future posts - they may not return results often, but when they do, they will be much higher than your safer hashtags.
You'll notice we haven't mentioned 'Hashtag Impressions' here - this is because although it's available, we can't specifically tie Impressions to exact hashtags, it's up to you to interpret what is doing well and what isn't - typically hashtags that are larger and more competitive will provide higher returns, so if you're ranking on lots of small tags and want to drive even more Impressions, try adding some larger tags (higher DAPC / Media count) into the mix. Alternatively, if you've found you haven't had great results, try focusing on smaller tags and working out the best ranges for you, working your way up to some larger tags!
Use patterns to guide your next hashtag research session. If all your 'high-performance' tags have a DAPC range of 5-50 and you've never ranked on a hashtag with 300+ DAPC, use this when looking for your next sets of hashtags!
P.S, don't worry if you don't feel like you have all the answers yet...
You can repeat the framework in this course with new hashtags, or use some of your old ones with a mix of new ones. Alternatively, you may want to gather more data before making any decision, and that's fine too!
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