The push for social media marketing has been growing in recent years, and any modern marketing campaign must include it. But what good are social media efforts if you’re not analyzing their efficacy? Surprisingly, many people overlook an essential part of the equation: marketing metrics. These allow you to track progress and measure your ROI – both essential parts of gauging campaign success and crafting future strategies.
Luckily, social media marketers have a great variety of analytics tools at their disposal. Popular measurement systems, such as Google Analytics, awe.sm, Sysomos, etc., offer marketers an opportunity to synthesize social media information and produce real numbers. But what areas should you be looking at? Here are the essential aspects to track.
What to measure
Conversions to sales: Use tools to track social media activity that turns into profit. Anything that generates a monetary effect is a success: newsletter subscriptions, new member registration, etc. Make sure to track all conversions to see if any consumer patterns arise.
Blog activity: Anything related to your blog activity, including subscribers to your blog and e-mail to blog subscribers – which can be more important, is necessary to look at. Successful blogs craft a two-way communication with readers (in the form of comments and responses). Find out if your blog is being referred to by other sites, and what general traffic patterns look like.
Positive engagements: Any positive consumer interaction, whether through blog comments, Facebook post comments/likes, retweets, etc., is important, including brand mentions. You should also track negative mentions, and compare quantities. This can give you valuable feedback in terms of brand perception and interaction.
Traffic leads: How are people coming across your content? Look at the breakdown of your sources: Are social media consumers referring you? What are the most successful avenues? Consider what you can do to encourage more activity.
Your network: Who are you connecting with? Find out who your followers, fans, and members are – and who is exposed to your content. What does their interaction look like? What can you do to keep them interested?
Time: Once people make it to your site, how long do they stay? Some marketers consider duration to be more valuable (think quality vs. quality). Analyze this information to find out visitor trends: What are they looking at? Which pages trigger a higher bounce rate?
User activity: Overall, how much are your targets interacting with your social media efforts? Look at what your active base is compared to your overall network. If you can implement campaigns to encourage more interaction, you can then compare the resulting data to track progress.
With so many tools available, there is no reason not to use available metrics to help you monitor your social media actions. Resulting data will help you target problem areas, visualize patterns, identify successes, and track overall progress – all of which will make sure your efforts and energies are directed to the right place.