What Metrics Matter? Measuring the Success of Social Media

Say you’re in charge of social media marketing for a large business. Everything seems to be going well. Your social media is active and you get a moderate amount of likes on each post. Your social media may seem successful, but then your boss asks, “What’s the ROI?” This question is practically impossible to answer. That is, without metrics.

Metrics are stats that measure activity. Metrics track and quantify how many people are using your social media page, going to your website, using your website, and even taking action on your site. While there are many metrics to track, three of the most popular metrics from Kevan Lee’s article on social media metrics, are conversions, leads, and funnels.

Conversions: Action Over Eyeballs

This is the number one metric to track. Conversion tracks the actions of users. If the user makes a purchase, signs up for a mailing list, or downloads a file, these metrics can be tracked. Not every person who sees your content is going to take action. It’s important to identify the percentage of people who take action rather than just looking at your site.

Leads: Don’t Give Up So Easily!

Have you ever looked at something online, but didn’t buy it, then the product shows up in basically every ad you see online? Essentially, you’re a lead: a potential converter. Tracking leads can be as essential as, if not more than, tracking conversions. While conversions are the people who have already taken action, leads are the people who may still take action. For example, ebay.com occasionally sends me an email with the subject, “Are you still interested in [X Product]?” While most times, the lead goes cold because I don’t care enough to buy the product, sometimes, I may have gotten sidetracked and will go back and purchase the product I was interested in.

Funnels: Where did You Come from? Where did You Go?

Funnels are a fairly simple concept: they track the paths users take to get from point A to point B. Funnels identify whether the user came to the site through social media, inbound links, or search engine options.

The benefit of tracking funnels is it shows where the most effective marketing is. It also identifies if there are links from a third party generating leads. Let’s say, for example, you are part of a company that sells lipstick. If a YouTuber wears that lipstick on one of her videos and links to the product in the video’s description box, you may get a large group of people coming to your site to look at that particular lipstick.

So What’s the ROI?

To measure the success of your social media strategy, answer these three questions:

  1. How many people are coming to our site through social media?
  2. How many people coming through social media take action?
  3. How much can we increase our ROI by reaching out to leads?

While it isn’t a perfect strategy (you can’t exactly track how many people are going to a store or calling you because of your social media, you can still get a good grasp on the impact of your social media.

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