Measurement matters, but are you measuring the right social media metrics?
Measurement plays a crucial role in any marketing campaign. Not only does it help to communicate a program’s success, it also provides insights for improvements and optimization. However, it’s important to not get distracted by vanity metrics (i.e. metrics that sound good but don’t provide any direction or actionable insight).
Impressions, share of voice (SOV), engagement, sales lift, coupon downloads, etc. all have their place and should be treated with as much respect and diligence as the campaigns you are executing. In this post I’ll cover three important considerations for planning and reporting on your campaign so that you can get beyond lower level social media metrics and deliver actionable business results.
Campaigns With The Most Impressions Aren’t Always The Most Impressive
(AKA If An Impression Is Served In the Forest, Does Anyone See it?)
Let’s say you’re running a campaign to drive awareness for a new product. Your primary KPI is likely going to be impressions – showing that you’ve reached a certain volume people exposing them to your product. A large number of impressions might make you feel good, but there’s a good chance they’re only raising awareness among the spiders that live on the cobwebs of the Internet (or World Wide Web, if you prefer) if not properly executed.
Make sure you’re placing these impressions in front of the right audience so you’re talking to them and not spiders on the Internet. Otherwise, your impressions are just a vanity metric that didn’t actually lead to business results. Sad!
As supplemental data for impressions to help prove business results, you can use other metrics like share of voice to further illustrate how the campaign successfully raised awareness. Taking it one step further, if you have access to the proper information, you can even look for trends in sales lift.
Have a Content Quality Checklist
There is a wealth of content out there and, as users become savvier on the Internet they learn to filter out the less-compelling stuff. This is why it’s crucial to both strategically create relatable content based on the intended audience and make sure that content is authentic.
Engagement on content is a great metric to gauge whether your campaign is hitting this mark. Likes are good for showing reception to the content, comments are good for generating conversations around your product, but shares are where the real benefit is. Shares show that your content resonates with the audience and you have created brand advocates who are further amplifying your message. It goes without saying that the more relatable and authentic your content is, touching on that “what’s in it for me” factor, the more likely it is to be shared.
Go for Longevity Over “Going Viral”
Going “viral” on purpose is tough and, if achieved, may not be very valuable in the long run. Sure, your video might get several million views, but how long until the next adorable cat video makes everyone forget what they saw two minutes ago?
If you’re focused on delivering quality, sharable content, it will live beyond the 15 seconds of fame a Super Bowl puppy gets. With quality, sharable content you get the initial impressions and engagements from when your campaign first runs and continuous benefit as highly-sharable content extends its life and further exposes your brand to new eyes.
For example, Pinterest has a dramatically longer half-life when compared to other social networks. If your content is evergreen and produced strategically, it will continue to generate value for your business even after the campaign has finished running.
Last But Not Least
These three considerations are a good start, but make sure you are testing and learning in an effort to better future campaigns. Learn from the content that fails to generate engagements as much as you do the content with a higher number of shares and a longer shelf life. Remember, a dog might be man’s best friend, but a dataset is a marketer’s best friend. Just don’t let your data run wild!
Measure strategically, make sure you’re reaching your target audience, and create content that will live beyond the life of the campaign. Throw out those vanity social media metrics and start driving business results! Contact us to learn more.