Nathan Mendenhall in Social Media Today outlines some thoughts about effective metrics for social media marketing.
He writes that more than 60 per cent of marketers say that measuring ROI is the main challenge for social media marketing.
Social media marketing is a fantastic (and cost effective) way to get your brand in front of a targeted group of consumers, however many brands still struggle with how to measure its impact. As such, it’s very common for brands to rely on vanity metrics and not fully understand if their social media marketing is or is not driving tangible business value.
Here are some of the metrics he suggests you you can calculate:
1. Community Growth
Month-over-month follower growth is a good metric to track, however it’s not the most important by any means.
2. Impressions / Reach
Impressions and reach are two metrics that don’t get the respect they deserve. The amount of people being served your content (reach) and the amount of times your content is being served (impressions) can tell you a lot about how your content is performing.
Engagements are probably the most tracked metric for social media marketing – we’ve all become obsessed with being the brand in our competitor set with the most engagements.
Don’t get me wrong, engagements are great and should be measured, however, you need to also assess whether they’re driving actual value for your business? I would suggest that there’s very little measurable value to your business being driven by only publishing content that’s intended to get Likes.
Sure, engagements help extend your reach, but it’s important not to use them as your indicator of overall success. You’ll want to have a balance of engagement and other metrics (such as website visits) to really know if your content strategy is attractive to your social community and generating business benefits for your brand.
4. Website Visits
Website visits tell you if your social media strategy is going the extra mile and attracting users to actively seek more information about your brand.
It’s very important to measure website visits so that you can identify where your social strategy fits in with your overall digital marketing efforts. Also, you can learn even more by looking at the amount of pages your social traffic visits, how long they spend on your site and more! Great, useful data here
With less than 10% of marketers being able to quantify their social media efforts, measuring conversions is a wonderful place to start.
We recommend measuring conversions from social media just like you would any other traffic source in Google Analytics – though the one thing to keep in mind is that Google Analytics doesn’t’t always tell the whole story.
Currently, Google Analytics measures last-click conversions, meaning the traffic source that immediately caused the conversion gets the credit. The average internet user bounces around a lot before converting, so it’s very rare to see someone respond directly to social content piece and convert. Therefore, social media sites usually get less credit than they deserve for conversions.
Mendenhall suggests if you measure these five metrics on a month-over-month basis, you’ll begin to see how social media marketing is generating business results for your brand.