Tips from the Team: The Social News Gap

Here at Chartbeat, we’ve always focused on helping you understand where your audience is spending their time on your site – but we know that’s not the full story on how they’re engaging with your content. It’s a social world out there, folks, and our newest feature, Offsite Social, pipes your CrowdTangle data directly into your real-time dashboard so you can see an end-to-end look at a story’s performance – spanning both your home-base and top social platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

For those of us in the weeds everyday, this enhancement offers the simple yet significant value of tool consolidation, as well as providing even deeper insights into your audience. These insights are all pulled together, both on and off-site, in one familiar space, so it’s easier – and quicker – to make strategic decisions on how to connect with your audience. No more need to click between two interfaces.

If you’re an author, journalist, content creator, or anything in between, Offsite Social not only shows you how much your content is being shared and discussed, but also offers an instant opportunity for you to interact with your readers and join the conversation.

As you experiment with new opportunities to capitalize on your content’s popularity around the web, put these best practices to work and see how they enhance your perspective on what it means to build an audience in a distributed-content world.

  1. Boost your reach and build a loyal following
    Quickly locate the platforms and niche audiences where your stories are resonating and identify dialogues worth engaging in: answer audience questions, clarify any concerns related to the topic, share related content to spark ongoing interest, target influencers to follow and evangelize them – maybe they’ll lead you to your next story!
  2. Drive more visitors back to your site
    Ultimately, the goal with social readers should be to convert them into a loyal audience. If they have a good experience when they visit, they’re more likely to visit you, even directly, again.

    For high performing articles, quickly package and post similar stories to make the most of the momentum you’ve developed. If you can get a visitor from Facebook to click onto one extra article within their visit, they are twice as likely to return the next week.
  3. Get more milage out of existing content
    Seeing any Zombies in the dashboard (old stories coming back to life unexpectedly)? Your audience might be regaining interest, or maybe it’s an opportunity to gain new followers.

    If an article has high social activity, but low on-site engagement, something needs to change. The topic and promotion is attractive, but the onsite experience isn’t delivering. Should you change the art? The layout? Is the lead buried? Use the Heads Up Display to gauge scroll behavior and adjust accordingly—regardless of the device your audience is using.
  4. Experiment with social momentums in real-time.
    Looking to increase your Facebook-referred traffic? The best thing you can do is to first foster organic traction around the story, before you push on your branded page. Identify and engage influencers pre-push and use the dashboard to gauge if the timing is right.

    Engaging your social audience will present other simple yet valuable opportunities as well. Are people using different naming conventions? Consider mimicking their abbreviations and nicknames for people and places. New angles might be uncovered in social conversations that inform on-site headlines and leads.

Understand the day-to-day social momentum of your articles in the context of your onsite content performance to sharpen your own editorial instincts, and combine it with a 360-degree view into how people are talking about and sharing your content across social media and adapt your social media strategies to close the social news gap.

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