How to Measure Your Brand’s Social Media Efforts
Measuring your brand’s social media ROI may seem like a daunting task. And it is, if you think about it in a conventional way. You have more numbers and data to hunt for and analyze than you do with traditional mediums. Social media ROI is simple if you understand the advanced analytical data that these platforms provide; and effective if you read that data properly and execute strategically.
Think about how much data users are willing to divulge using their social media accounts, all of that data is at your disposal, it’s up to you whether you choose to use it to your advantage or not.
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Social media isn’t just for staying connected to friends and family – it is also an invaluable resource for businesses who want to monitor and measure their presence within the sphere of this incredible universe.
It’s not even debatable: Companies who embrace social media like Facebook and Twitter reach more people than those who don’t. However, reaching more people doesn’t always mean you’re actually engaging those people. A ‘like’ on Facebook or a follower on Twitter is only as good as their intention to track your posts – and let’s face it, there’s a lot of noise out there. A lot of businesses are competing for attention.
To stand out, you have to make the most out of every interaction – don’t expect prospective or current clients to do the leg work.
There is no exact formula for measuring social media ROI across the board, but the best way to analzye your efforts is to set clear goals, develop a strategy and then monitor and measure your success.
*Make sure your execution tactics are backed by analytics so that you can effectively build a behavioral profile and use that to your advantage for future marketing communication purposes. Whether your tactics are paid or organic, the insights available are powerful and need to be stored.
So how do you do this?
First, you have to understanding that social media outlets have different strengths and weakness. You would not, for instance, use Twitter the same way you’d use Facebook. Or Facebook the same way you’d use Google + or LinkedIn. It’s imperative that you become more than familiar with each platform. You need to become an expert or hire one.
This leads us to our next point: The companies that have the greatest success with social media have invested time and money in their presence on these sites. They don’t use these resources frivolously; rather, they set goals drawing on the strengths of each network, and then develop a strategy for how to implement their plan. Moreover, they regularly check in to see how well their plan is working for them with consistent monitoring of their social insights data.
Everyone’s goals and plans will vary, but here are a few common characteristics of successful social media campaigns:
1) Set distinct goals. OK, so you want to establish a strong presence on social media. What exactly would you like to achieve? Set long and short term goals. Maybe it is 100 likes on Facebook in the first week, and 100 shares in the first month. If you’re trying to sell something, your goals should be outlined according to dollar amounts and should align with the marketing communication strategy you have developed on your e-commerce website.
2) Measure your success. There are many free tools that can help you measure your success on social media, like HootSuite, SocialMention, Klout and Google Analytics. Measuring your results means that you can see how your strategy performed over a specified time. It shows you how you did compared to your competitors and allows you to observe trends so you can foresee your clients needs and desires.
More specifically, measuring your brand can let you know if your content is being shared as much as your competitors, as well as letting you see what content types are engaging the most people, what days or times of day are your peak times for engagement and finally, if you are posting too much or not enough based on your audience engagement.
Of course, measuring your success also allows you to show other people how your strategy is working, making the time and effort you’ve put into developing your brand on social media accountable.
Social media evolves quickly. If you don’t take the time to measure up, you could be going down the wrong path.
3) Monitor your success. Monitoring can seem a lot like measuring, and it does have many overlaps, however, we like to think of monitoring as more like listening. Monitoring means you will constantly ‘listen’ to uncover conversations. This will help you collaborate, learn and engage with prospective or existing customers, as well as other people in the industry. The idea is to gain immediate knowledge about trends without having to wait for the measured responses. This won’t only come from online sources, though it is often queried across the Internet using relevant semantics to see who is talking about what. The idea is to activity seek out information, absorb it, and then use this feedback to better promote your brand.
In the end, you need to be able to develop goals and strategies, and also be able to outline key performance indicators in the beginning to measure and monitor your success. You have know why, when, how and where if you’re going to get anywhere with branding on social media.
Admittedly, it’s a lot to consider, but we’ve made mastering social media as a branding building block our business, so contact us if you want guaranteed results. We provide our customers with full social media strategy, monthly monitoring as well as consulting strategies helping you to measure your social media ROI.*Infographic courtesy of MDG Advertising PHOTO: masternewmedia.org