Measuring Social Media
We know that you want to measure your results of your social media campaign. You may also need to report to your accountant or your line manager that all this effort you are putting into social media is turning into profit. This article will give a background into analysing what is working and how to use the results when measuring social media.
Measuring Social Media Results
Firstly, measuring social media is not the same as other types of marketing. However, it is equally important to measure your results.
In traditional terms of digital marketing, we would count a click from our link to a purchase button as a conversion. With platforms like Facebook, for example, we can count conversions as someone clicking on an advertisement and going to download an post, which is a social activity but not a direct sale. So, it’s sometimes tricky to measure who came from where and how a sale came about.
In a small business, we frequently hear examples from customers who started out simply observing;-
“I’ve been reading your newsletter for two years, and I had to call today because…”
“I’ve been following you on Facebook since you started your business, and I finally broke my old _______ so I wanted to come and see you for a new one.”
Years ago, we taught that it would take up to seven touches before a customer made a decision to buy and that most salespeople stopped after five or six. Now, because we are so immersed in all forms of media and there is so much content out there, we find that it can take 25 touches. That means your messaging (a combination of social selling, e-mail, chance meetings, billboards, and all that stuff that makes marketing fun) needs to be seen by a potential customer 25 times before they make a buying decision. It also means that in order to achieve the same sale results you have to;-
- Work harder
- Be more diligent in your strategy
- Be more helpful to your community
- Be more present for people to pay attention, notice, and want what you have
Analytics software couldn’t possibly be more important now than it was even just two short years ago. Many small business owners start out without fully appreciating the required investment in this area of their sales and marketing budget, in both time and money. The trouble is that when it comes to measuring things like your return on social media efforts, you actually need really good analytics to work it out.
You need to be listening to what’s happening on your corporate accounts, naturally, but you’ve got to also listen to what your employees, your customers, and the public at large think about you. When someone gets to your website and pushes the ‘buy now’ button, you need to know exactly what path they took to get there, how long they stayed before they abandoned their purchase, and so much more.
For example, if you have really picture-friendly products and you are doing lots of sharing on Instagram, but most of your buying behaviour comes from Pinterest where one item went viral six months ago, then you need to look at your strategy. Of course, if you can’t or didn’t measure any of this, then you can simply continue to throw spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks, but you are probably spending far more time on social media than you want to be. After all, you do have a business to run, right?
Your CRM – Customer Relationship Management
As essential as it is for you to develop your social presence and to become an influence in social media, it’s also vitally important that you protect the integrity of your list with a customer relationship management tool. The big businesses use tools like Infusionsoft, Salesforce, and others to manage their list of contacts, organise their leads, strategise, and manage their workflow. Your CRM will also be incorporated within your social media strategy that is essential to ensure you have a focused campaign that stands out and connects with the business objectives and purpose.
There are also smaller packages available for small businesses that allow you to do the same. Some are offered by the big guys mentioned above, while others designed for specific industries like optometry, retail, and coaching. Your best guide in selecting a CRM is to ask people what they use, take part in demonstrations, and if your business is big enough to have a sales team, ask them what they need, and then go and find it.
Our social communities are fragmented. You will have people who visit your website and might sign up for your newsletter if you have one. Others will connect to you on Facebook, and yet others will connect to you on LinkedIn who are not on your newsletter list or Facebook.
Marketing has evolved in a continuous stream since the first farmer stood in the town square to sell his produce. It’s part art and part science, and it changes at a rapid pace.
To make the most of social selling for your company, it is essential that you and your social media/communications manager commit to continual learning so that you understand the following areas;-
What’s taking place in your industry
The tools that become available to help you in your marketing efforts
The analytics that you will digest and understand
There is a myriad of ways that you can keep up to date. Online learning is well suited to teaching about social selling, and there are conferences held around the world that are led by influencers, trailblazers, and a few mavericks in the social space. If you search for social selling on Google, you can find lots of opportunities to connect with others. Or, search for social selling on YouTube and watch videos that those influencers have created. (Watch the dates on those videos, however, since anything that gets old might not be working as well as it once was, although the historical angle might be of benefit to you.)