Does a campaigns success in social media guarantee the brands success in overall marketing terms?
The answer to the above question is both a yes and a no. Social media campaigns have to be planned in a very thoughtful manner with the long term objective of the brand in mind.
What is a successful social media campaigns?
It totally depends on what the objectives were when the campaign was started. If the objectives were only about creating buzz and increasing mass awareness of the Brand or the Product, then a camping with very high numbers of likes, shares, downloads will create a lot of buzz and should be counted as a successful campaign.
This campaign might be followed with another campaign specifically targeted for a “call to action” so as it can build on the first campaign and generate product sales. The success of this camping has to be definitely measured based on the no. of product sales / revenue generated.
Hence 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.
Sometimes we need to go beyond “ROI” to measure the true benefits of social media.
The investment made in social is typically relatively low, even with paid social media efforts. It is easy to ask a question like “does Facebook drive in-store sales?” But not only is it difficult to answer, it is also the wrong question to ask. “ROI” is the wrong term to use. Instead, marketers should accept that calculating a specific financial return is not immediately realistic and focus on measuring the overall impact a brand’s social presence has on its relationship with customers. Marketers should ask three basic questions as they evaluate this impact of a social media campaign on the customer relationship:
- How many impressions appeared in market? How many people were reached?
- Who were these people? Did they fit the target?
Brands must understand which platforms are right for a specific goal and also how to balance paid media aimed at acquisition and owned media aimed at engagement and virality. Experimenting with reducing and increasing paid media to understand its impact can help brands find this balance and has minimal risk.
By moving beyond traditional ways of understanding and measuring “ROI” and comparing outcomes against specific business objectives, brands can tap into the real value of social. Using a combination of brand tracking measures, such as Net Promoter Scores can help a brand optimize its efforts through the social channel.