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The usage of social media by the business establishments, irrespective of the size, is on the rise. The reason behind this is the increasing number of audience on social networks. There are of course different types of social media networking websites like LinkedIn, Instagram, Snapchat, StumbleUpon, Facebook and many others, and each of them attracts a different kind of audience.
A business establishment has to first of all ascertain the platform where it would reach the maximum number of audience. For this reason, measurement of different metrics for social media campaigns is required. It is a proven fact that if the results are tracked and analyzed, the effort could be optimized, making it more effective and focused.
The next step is to choose the right metrics to measure these results. There are three main dimensions in social media that could be taken into account. They are volume, engagement, and conversion. Volume refers to the volume of traffic generated and is reflected in metrics like followers, fans, tweets per month, trending topics and the likes. When it comes to engagement, metrics like repeat tweets, number of subscribers, time spent, content sharing, comments, etc. can be tracked.
For conversions, metrics could include generated-leads, click-through rates, and sales. Tracking all of these may not be possible and it also depends on the business objectives. For this reason, the goals should be set and the most important metrics from each category should be selected and monitored accordingly. Nevertheless, few of the important metrics of social media need to be always tracked and measured, although the priority lies in the goal of the organization.
5. Search Volume
Numerous studies have found out that customers who are exposed to a certain brand on social media are more likely to search for it on search engines. This, itself is an indicator that the search volume is an important metric that should be measured. Yet many brands have been failing to monitor it. Although, there are various tools to track and monitor the search volume of a brand, Google Trends is one of the most used web facility. Using these tools to monitor the changes in search volumes against that of your competitors can provide insights to engage customers better than the competitors.
4. Brand Image
Social media is an amazing channel to personalize and get closer to customers’ sentiments and enhance brand image. Paying attention to customers is an important factor in engaging them through social media. The reason being goodwill is important for any business establishment and that is also an essential criterion on social media as well. All the publicity may not be positive publicity and negative remarks could be harmful to a brand. Negative customer comments and remarks on social media may tarnish a brand’s image and any ill reputation on social networks may travel faster.
Thus, understanding the brand sentiment on social is vital for any marketer. Tools like Hootsuite, Facebook insights, Twitter Analytics, Scraawl and few others could help you in measuring the statistics, social presence, sentiment and the overall impact of your social media marketing. It is also important is to have a plan on how you should respond to the negative comments and in case if the image of the brand is affected.
There should be a well-prepared strategy formulated in advance regarding how you would respond to negative comments about the brand. More importantly, there should be a properly laid out plan for compensating the unhappy customers who express their discontent about the brand, product or services on social networks.
3. Generated Leads
The number of social mentions or followers is undoubtedly an indicator of brand awareness but it may not be enough to generate leads or draw prospects to the website. An effective lead generation strategy can prove to be more helpful in predicting whether the campaigns on social media are contributing towards the growth of conversion rates or helping in generating positive leads. There are few tools available in the market that tell you how many web page visits, social interactions or email opens are required to convert a prospect into a customer. These programs tell you how each specific type of social media interaction has played a role in the process of conversion. The analytical data of such programs enable you to know the effectiveness of each social media campaign.
2. Brand Reach
Reach refers to the number of people, you impacted with your social media efforts and content. The more the reach, the higher is the impact. Reach is a metric that gives you a fair understanding of how attractive or appealing your social media content is for your target audience. Examples to measure reach would include:
• Likes on the Facebook page
• Followers on Twitter
• Subscribers and views on YouTube channel
• Visitors to your Blog
• Connections on LinkedIn
Reach can be measured by regular monitoring these statistics. Most of the social networking websites like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter have analytics which allows you to track these metrics. Third party tools like Klout can also be used to monitor the reach of your campaigns on social networks.
Finally, it’s time to measure the business-building impact of your marketing on social networks, which make this metric the most important one. Conversion would give you an estimate how many people took the step to actually enter the lead generation funnel. This number would add to your marketing database. The best practice would be to use your website as the main hub of the social media content. The website should also be enabled to upsell and employ lead generation tactics to convert unknown visitors into named leads. Some of the conversion metrics to track, include:
• Completion of forms for online lead generation
• Registration for webinars
• Registration for content downloads
• Online sales
• Phone-in leads
For effective monitoring of conversion rates, there are multiple free resources that can be used. The first step can be the integration of Google Analytics into your website for tracking the activities being carried on. The next step would be monitoring of campaigns in Google Analytics and building trackable links for each of the social media posts. The final step can be setting up of goal tracking in it which would keep a note of all your online conversion activities, like registrations, downloads, etc.
Along with all these key steps, another crucial one is to find the answer to the question, where the target customers are in highest number. The metrics discussed above will certainly give a cue about which of the social media platforms would yield the best results. The focus should be on the most popular one where the reach is highest with the maximum number of customers. The best practice is to focus on three or four of the social media platforms and get the best of the results from the campaigns. Often, business establishments create profiles on each and every platform and then implement the same strategy for all. This approach may not lead to the desired results. At the end, it should be noted that there are different tactics and rules for each platform and there isn’t a single strategy that fits all.