What is a social media audit?
Audit; an official inspection of an individual's or organization's accounts, typically by an independent body.
A social media audit is aimed to determine how a business should be using social media to get the highest return on investment. The output should be a written or improved social media strategy, to make sure that a company is using social media to clearly define their business objectives which can consist of brand awareness, brand loyalty, raw traffic, sales, customer support, customer retention, etc. In order to determine whether or not the brand is getting a good return on investment with their social media sites, they can conduct a gap analysis* and look at their analytics reports.*
Why is it such an important part of PR planning and policy development?
If you don’t know where you’re starting from, a lot of time and resources can be wasted improving things that don’t need it and neglecting things that really need your attention.
Gap analysis* “In the management literature, gap analysis is the comparison of actual performance with potential or desired performance. If a company or organization does not make the best use of current resources, or forgoes investment in capital or technology, it may produce or perform below its potential.” (from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gap_analysis)
Analytics reports* “Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage. Web analytics is not just a tool for measuring web traffic but can be used as a tool for business and market research, and to assess and improve the effectiveness of a website." (from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_analytics)