Measuring Social Media ROI

It’s important for businesses to start thinking about ways they can take their analytics to the next level in social media. As social media evolves and more people are recognizing the impact these channels can have on business goals, one of the main concerns for leadership is measuring social media’s return on investment (ROI). However, many believe measuring ROI on social media is not possible and relies on many resources. It takes time and expertise to gather the appropriate data and insights, to show the true value of social media and how it relates back to the business’s goals and objectives.

Here are some simple, yet effective, ways to measure social media that go beyond “Likes” and “Followers” and can demonstrate the impact of each network:

1. Determine how many people you could potentially reach on your social media channels by calculating the value of your followers, as well as your reach, with each post you are sending out. While your reach is limited to the amount of followers that people who engage with your brand have, it’s valuable to capture those who are not directly engaged with your brand to help increase the volume of your message. As an example, we have 1,399 followers on Sundog’s Twitter account. Since we’ve had 45 mentions and retweets this past week, we now have the potential to reach 62,955 people.
2. It’s vital to have an established baseline of defined goals and focus on the numbers that lead to each goal. Another way to track social media value is to look at your sales—and if there was a boost in sales, determine if this resulted from your social media activity.
3. Looking at traffic referrals is another way to capture insights around social data. As an example, if you run a Facebook ad campaign and see an increase in traffic to your website during that time period, you know the traffic came from that ad campaign. Google Analytics uses website data to reveal social sources, helping you identify which social networks drive the most traffic and generate high quality visitors. You need to interpret this information and use it to adjust your strategy, as well.

As you look back on data and insights, you can continually define and refine your social media strategy based on your findings. While measuring and analyzing your social media efforts, keep these suggestions in mind to help enhance your social media reporting. Although every company may have their own metrics and ways to define success, it’s important to keep a balance of what your goals are and how you reflect them through your reports.

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