You can’t measure the true value of a social media campaign without tracking the metrics. That’s obvious enough. But the shear amounts of available tools out there—and the fact that new ones keep popping up—can make the process overwhelming, especially when creating reports for your clients or your boss.
So, which metrics are the most useful in helping you improve your SM strategy, grow your fan base, and ultimately your business? We’re here to help: Here are five key metrics you should include in every social media report.
Let’s start with one of the most important areas to measure…and one that your client or boss is probably already eyeballing: engagement, that is, the likes, comments, shares, and clicks that your posts are getting. These numbers let you know how many people are interacting with the content you’re posting, which in turn can determine the direction of your strategy, depending on your goals. For example, getting a lot of likes is great, but if your post has a call-to-action and the metrics show it’s not generating clicks, you may need to change your messaging.
These social media reporting metrics—impressions and reach primarily—are centered around your current and potential audiences, and they are important to track, particularly when it comes to brand awareness. While both metrics are similar, it’s important to know the difference. Impressions count exposure, how many times your post appears in someone’s timeline, while reach measures the number of people who could realistically see a post during a reporting period (via sharing).
3. Audience Growth
It’s easy to get caught up in the total number of followers you have, but it’s more important to know the rate of growth, that is how quickly you are gaining followers. That increase, which should be measured monthly, is key to evaluating your marketing efforts. A big bump in followers tells you you’re doing something right with the content or the offers that you’re posting. If the numbers are decreasing, however, it’s probably time to switch things up. To determine what the audience growth rate is, divide the total number of new followers you’ve gained over the month by your total audience. Then multiply that number by 100.
Social listening is a major component of audience research. It allows you to monitor and analyze comments being made about your brand on various social media platforms. Whether the comments are good or bad, listening provides you with the information you need to respond accordingly, which can be something small like sending a thanks to a happy consumer or something big, like shifting your entire marketing strategy. Mention is a great standalone tool for social listening.
Expect this one to be a high priority for your boss or client, who will want to know if the time and money they’ve invested in social media is translating into new leads and sales. Referrals (which breaks down—by network—how a lead landed on your website) and conversions (when the lead actually makes a purchase) are the key tools here. In order to measure them, you’ll need to use UTM tracking in Google Analytics or HubSpot marketing and sales software, which can track social visits right down to a sale.
Looking for help with your social media efforts? Reach out to the social team at Brainstorm. We specialize in developing (and tracking) strategic social media programs designed to help you better connect with audiences, improve engagement, and increase sales.