Intro to data
We track social media data for over 300 rafting companies around the world. Phil manages the coding, the data manipulation, and dealing with the various API’s. I take that data and figure out what it actually means, and how it can be used. Each week we’ll give you a glimpse into how this data can be used to improve your digital presence…or you can subscribe to learn even more about what other rafting companies are doing.
For our first post, we’ll keep it simple. We have found and revealed the top three performers for three key performance indicators (KPI) in various regions throughout the US. If you’re not in the top three, but still curious about where exactly you fall in your region, shoot an email to Phil. He’s always happy to talk about the data he’s pulling at no charge (trust me, he really likes to talk numbers, and this gives me an out from his incessant data chatter for a few hours).
Three Key Metrics
Like I said, this first post will address three very top level KPI’s that are often talked about, but not always utilized the most effectively. It is important to understand what your social media goals are in order to measure how well your social media efforts are doing to get you toward those goals.
Likes and Followers
Facebook Likes and Twitter/Instagram Followers are the most obvious metrics to measure, and can blind even the most driven marketer. They’re easy to track, and in a sense easy to collect. If you’re main focus is brand recognition, Likes and Follows are your metric. The outfitters we track range anywhere from 10 likes all the up to roughly 215,000 (kudos to the Nantahala Outdoor Center).
Talking About This
Engagement is a huge buzzword when it comes to social media measurement, and we’re going to escort you to the tip of the iceberg in this post. You’ll find a number in your Facebook insights labeled “People Talking About This.” Although a lot of people are confused by this number, it’s actually pretty simple. Facebook tracks all of the people who have taken an action on your page that shows up in their news feed. This includes things like liking your page, liking a post, mentioning your page, and commenting on your post. The “People Talking About This” metric is the full count of these people over the last week. It’s a good metric for how many people are actually interacting with your page, rather than just liking it and forgetting about it.
Now that we’ve got some numbers, let’s talk about what this actually means.
- Company 1 has 10,000 likes and 100 people talking about it.
- Company 2 has 500 likes and 50 people talking about it.
Which company is doing better? Company 2
You can compare large companies to small companies much easier with engagement ratio.
- The first company’s ratio is 1% (meaning 1% of their fans have actively engaged their page this week).
- The second company’s is 10%.
When looking at these numbers, it is easier to see that the second company is interacting more with their fans. More engagement has proven to lead to a higher conversion rate resulting in better ROI.
Now the moment you’ve been waiting for…are you in the top three of your region? Check out how we’ve split up the regions and the top performers below. Remember, if you’re not in the top three, you can subscribe to see where you rank in your region.
The Southeast region covers SC, GA, NC, and TN. The rivers have been dubbed some of the fastest growing adventure activity regions in the US and include the Ocoee, the Chattooga, the Nantahala and many others.
The Mid Atlantic region covers WV, MD, KY, PA, and VA. Some of the oldest commercially ran rivers and–depending on the time of year–some of the best whitewater in the US, arguably the world. The rivers include the New, the Gauley, the Russell Fork, the Shenandoah, the Yough, and the Cheat.
The Northeast region covers NH, ME, and NY. This region is full of some of the most underrated big water on the East Coast. The rivers include the Penobscot, the Black River, and the Magalloway.
For the Southwest region we broke off TX, UT, NM, and AZ. There are a couple other states that could be included in this region but we’ll get to them later. The rivers include lots of different sections of the Colorado, the Rio Grande in Big Bend, the Taos Box, and the Green River.
Northwest – Pacific
We split the Northwest into two regions. The Pacific just covers WA and OR, and we feel are deserving of their own region as the scenery and rivers are in a class of their own. Rivers include the White Salmon, the Hood, and the Deschutes.
Northwest – Mountain
The inland states of the Northwest were combined into the Mountain region, these are WY, ID, MT. Again, it’s hard to compare this region to other areas as the scenery as well as accessibility is hard to match. The rivers include the Gallatin, the Salmon, and the Yellowstone.
The Central region is an often forgotten region for whitewater, but there are some that should be remembered in MI, WI, and even my homestate of IL. Known mostly for canoe or float trips, there is actually some decent whitewater on the Sturgeon, the Menominee, and the Vermillion.
Two states in the West are big enough to be measured completely on their own. The first is Colorado. We are currently tracking 37 rafting outfitters in Colorado alone. If you’ve made it this far, I’m pretty sure the whitewater of Colorado needs no explanation.
California isn’t far behind Colorado with the number of outfitters we are tracking, but in so many aspects, it is used to being its own region. The rivers include the Tuolumne, the Merced, and of course the American.
While Alaska doesn’t have the number of companies as Colorado or California, it doesn’t really fit into any other region. By default it gets it’s own region. Rivers include the Talkeetna, the Nenana, and Six Mile Creek.
Get More Info!
At KDudley Media we are data driven when it comes to improving your digital strategy. Want more info about data for your company or your competitors? Email Phil
Want to know how to use this data? Email me
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