Analytics are important and helpful, but they are a minor-league detail, not a major-league detail. The numbers can almost never tell you what is most important, and easily hide the fact that some of the most important interactions may result from smaller avenues that a bare look at the statistics would have told you to kill.
This is very, very well said by Gary Vaynerchuk, one of the best social media experts around, in his excellent book Crush It!: Why Now Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion:
I use analytics very rarely and I urge you not to rely too much on them either, especially if you’ve got good business instincts.
A lot of times the stats and percentages related to my business just don’t support what my instinct says is true, and I’ll trust my instincts over numbers every time. What if your analytics tell you that you’ve only had seven views on Break.com in two months? Are you going to stop posting to that platform? The data are telling you that you should probably drop it, but what you don’t know is that one of those seven viewers is a producer for The Today Show. There’s no reason to think that can’t happen.
The numbers can be a trap that changes your behavior. People see they’ve only gotten fifty viewers in a few weeks and decide they suck and they stop trying as hard. Or their video catches on and gets watched a thousand times and they think they’ve made it, and they stop trying as hard. Metrics can be useful, of course, but the effect of your online interactions and the excitement building toward your brand isn’t accurately reflected by the number of viewers you have.
It’s not about how many viewers you have, it’s about how passionate they are. If you must use them, analytics should be a minor-league detail. Focus the majority of your attention on your overall brand positioning.