Having just written four blog posts on how to harness the power of social media to boost your sales – specifically Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest – it seems like a good idea to discuss how you can track the success of these efforts.
It can be a mistake to look at social media marketing in the same terms as other marketing activities. For example, when you send out an Email marketing campaign, you will analyse the open rate and other quantifiable metrics and then decide if the effort was worth the return.
The outcome you can expect from using social media is to strengthen your brand with existing customers or introduce your brand to new customers. However you are likely doing other activities in conjunction with using social media. Therefore it’s very difficult to determine exactly what impact the social media marketing played in the short term.
Simply analysing the number of people who are following or liking your social media profiles is not telling you everything you need to know. The more important information to track includes:
- Engagement: The percentage of your fans/followers who are sharing your content, discussing it or commenting on it. Having fans like your brand but pay no attention to your content means you are doing something wrong. You want to see them liking, retweeting or repinning your content to know the posts are having some sort of an impact.
- Share of Voice (SoV): The number of conversations about your brand compared to your competitors. The way to calculate this is to divide the numbers of mentions your company gets compared to the total number your competitors get. One handy tool that will do this for you is Social Mention.
- Referrals: The number of people who click a link in social media to arrive on your website. This is probably the easiest metric to assess if you want a quick and simple way of seeing what your social media conversion rate is. If you have Google Analytics set up on your website (and you should), it will give you this information.
One quick and simple tool to use to assess the overall impact your brand is having on the various social media channels is Klout. Once you have tied all your social media channels into it, you get a Klout score. This will fluctuate up and down as you make more, or less, of an impact on social media. From its dashboard you can see what activity occurred which impacted your score and on which channels you are having the largest impact.
Many businesses understand why they need to engage with their audience on social media, but many lack the time or understanding of how to go about it. If you need help in this respect then simply contact your favourite web designers!