Every marketer who manages social media wants to understand how his/her efforts are demonstrating a return on investment. Let’s look at five quick tricks to help you do just that.
1. Map Social Media Efforts To Business Goals
Understand what ROI means for your business. Is it total sales or qualified leads? Conversions? Time saved?
- Establish the goals and metrics you’re looking for.
- Develop your social communication strategy.
- Determine what tactics will help you achieve your goals.
Work with your sales and marketing departments to determine how these metrics will be captured and reported before a campaign is launched. Use tools such as Google Analytics, Hootsuite Analytics or Adobe to help in this process.
2. Align Social Media With Traditional Marketing
Align your social media strategy with your business marketing strategy to ensure one supports the other. This alignment can come through a coordinated communication plan.
Follow these steps:
- Include social media handles and hashtags in your traditional advertising.
- Use traditional ads to spark social engagement.
- Repurpose traditional marketing messaging for social content.
Key examples of social media metrics to track include: reach, site traffic, leads generated, conversions, and revenue generated.
Remember, use unique tracking URLs for each communication channel so you know which vehicle is responsible for driving the most traffic. You can also use forms and landing pages to track sales and leads.
3. Listen To Your Customers
By doing so you can determine customer needs and preferences for consuming content.
In the book Marketing in the Groundswell the authors present the concept of using social media in parts of the marketing funnel where traditional marketing has no presence. By listing to your consumers, you can ascertain at which stage of the buying cycle they want different types of content. Find the channels in which your best consumers engage and focus your efforts there.
Follow these steps:
- Identify the correct social channels, listen to the conversations and trends.
- Post useful information that prompts questions. Each communication should strive to provide an insightful response to a customer need.
- Engage with them on their terms. Understand an acceptable communication frequency and post accordingly.
4. Qualitative Results Matter
Don’t neglect qualitative results when determining quantitative ROI. Here are a few social media marketing benefits to consider:
- Customer feedback
- Marketing insight
- Cost-effective customer service
- Brand advocates and influence
- Solutions to problems
- Brand awareness
- Connections to new partners and suppliers
- Event marketing
Try to gain agreement to consider the aforementioned qualitative measurements as an acceptable return on investment. Remember to track these efforts to build your case.
5. Be A Consistent Resource
Blog, tweet, and post more to solve customers’ problems and less to offer discounts or gain attention.
Another consideration is the leveraging the unknown influence that social media has on your marketing ROI. Prospective customers who do not interact with you directly on social may still be influenced by repeat exposures to your brand messaging. They may be predisposed to prefer you based on how they’ve seen you solve problems for others as well.
Overall, determine the metrics that matter for your business. Define them as simply as you can, and begin tracking. Look for trends you can correlate to social activity so you can add them to your social media ROI.
Do you have more to add to this list of 5 quick tricks for achieving social media ROI?