Often we come across marketers who complain that they ran a social media campaign which was very successful and won many accolades; however, it didn’t help us achieve our overall marketing objectives. Does that mean that a campaign’s success in social media doesn’t guarantee the brand’s success in overall marketing terms?
To understand this better, we need to ask ourselves if we can use the same metrics to gauge a social media campaign as we use for traditional marketing campaign. The answer is definitely a “no” as traditional methods of measuring ROI are misplaced when it comes to gauging the impact of social media initiatives. Certainly, it is difficult to measure the return on investment for social media interactions but we should keep the following facts in mind while devising the KPIs for social media marketing:
- The real value of social media initiatives is in developing and strengthening a relationship between a brand and its consumers. Traditional ROI measurements and attempts to analyze direct impact on sales are futile and misplaced.
- Marketers should measure social initiatives in terms of branding and satisfaction metrics like Net Promoter Scores, which measure both satisfaction and virality.
- Advanced attribution models, like Agent-Based Modeling (ABM), are the best ways to predict how social media efforts might drive offline user activity that meets business objectives like increasing sales or decreasing call center volume.
Brands can’t measure social media success without knowing their business objective:
Early on, too many brands rushed in to building a social media presence but lacked a cohesive strategy that aligned with overall business goals. Social was and for many still is a silo, but it’s critical to align social media KPIs with specific business objectives. Brands should establish goals before the start of a social media campaign and determine what kind of tracking measures they need to implement upfront. Goals may include generating revenue, reducing customer service costs, shifting brand sentiment, improving operational efficiency, cultivating customer relationships or gleaning insight into target markets.