Assessing owned platforms
Monitoring the results from the online properties you operate is very easy. When it comes to social media, most of the platforms have internal analytics that show you how many people have seen your posts and how many people have interacted with them. With your website, make sure you have set up Google Analytics, which will give you the most detailed results about the traffic.
How you measure success is up to you. However, the overall numbers only show part of the picture. Often, the most significant figures are hidden below the top line.
For example, you may want to focus on monitoring the change over time in the audience in a target market, if you are trying to increase visitors to a particular destination. That could be especially important if one of your goals is to shift the percentage of domestic vs international visitors to your site.
Or, for another example, you might want to measure success by the number of times your content is shared (rather than just ‘liked’) on social media because this is a stronger measure of reaching new people and not just constantly talking to the same audience.
As you monitor the results of the content you publish, you may also notice trends in what is successful and what is not. This gives you the chance to regularly adapt your strategy based on the statistics. However, keep in mind that larger numbers might not be the best results in many cases. Considering that a pretty photo of a sunset may get more views than a story about your site’s heritage, but which one is more important to your brand identity and goals as an institution? Finding the right balance between the two is often the best outcome.
Assessing media partnerships
When it comes to monitoring the results from partnerships with media organisations, it is a similar approach as with your own platforms. The most effective analysis will come when you know what you are trying to achieve. Again, the largest numbers might not be the most important ones – you may be much more interested in the countries where the audience is coming from and which pieces of content they are most interested in.
Although you won’t automatically have access to these statistics, it is reasonable to ask for them. If you are working with influencers and bloggers on a paid campaign, part of your agreement can be that they provide you with a statistical report at the conclusion. For other digital media publishers, it will be up to them to provide the information they are comfortable with. However, remember that statistics on social media (such as likes and comments) are visible to anyone.
When you are requesting the statistics from a publisher’s analytics, be sure to ask for the specific information you would like – and not to ask for more than you need. It takes time to put together a results report and the easier you make it, the more likely you will get the data you want.
There is no doubt that there are huge opportunities for promoting your World Heritage site with digital media. One of the best aspects of the new media landscape is that you are able take part in it, no matter how big or small your site is. Start with what you are comfortable with and grow and change as you access and adapt to the any changing conditions.
The way digital content is produced and presented is constantly evolving and poses its own challenges. But, it also offers opportunities to work with professionals like journalists, bloggers and influencers to respond effectively to a changing environment and keep up with the trends and innovations.