A good social media marketing campaign is nothing if you have no idea on how to gauge its effectiveness.
Thankfully enough, knowing whether or not your campaign is getting the traction it rightfully deserves is all just a matter of knowing what social media metrics to track.
Here's what you need to keep track of:
1. Audience Engagement
"If a tree falls in a forest, and nobody is around to hear it, does it even make a sound?" as that famous thought experiment goes.
It's the same way with content. You might have an excellent content creation team at the backbone of your campaign, but if their content isn't being read and shared by anyone, then their efforts will all be in vain.
Ask yourself: Is your audience responding to your content and postings as your campaign intends them to be?
So, as much as possible, keep track of your audience engagement. Depending on the platform, this can be (but is not limited to) shares, comments, likes, favorites, inbound links, or any other metric that shows that people are actively engaging with your content.
There are specific tools that you can use to do this. The most prominent of which is Google Analytics, Google's own social media metrics and analytics tool. This tool allows you to take a closer look at what social channels most of your traffic is coming from. By analyzing your conversion rates, you'll be able to get a clear grasp of your campaign's strengths and weaknesses, thereby allowing you to further fine-tune your content strategy.
It's important to note that the number of fans or followers is not the key metric that you should be looking at. What's more essential is the number of times that your brand is being talked about online. And this metric comes in the form of mentions, tags, and inbound links.
If you find that your metrics are not going up and people are not engaging with your content, then make sure that they are discovering it in the first place. Quality content leads to more shares, and more shares mean more chances of increasing your reach and your brand being discovered by new customers.
Though it's not exactly an accurate formula, one way of gauging the discoverability of your content is by looking at the number of mentions or tags that your brand is receiving on your social media channels. "Mentions" and "tags" are metrics that tell you whether your brand has been mentioned or talked about online. It's a way to gauge if people are interested in your brand and are resonating with the content you're sharing. If you find that- despite having a huge number of followers and fans- your content is practically being ignored online, then maybe it's time to change up your content strategy and try new tactics.
For inbound links (a hyperlink on a third-party site or platform that links back to your site), a great tool to use would be Google's Search Console. Aside from giving you the number of inbound links that your site has, it also allows you to tweak and optimize your site's online visibility.
3. Net Promoter Score
The Net Promoter Score is metric that tells you what your audience's overall sentiment about your brand is. Is it negative or positive? Are they willing to recommend your brand's products or services to others?
To get this metric, you would need to conduct surveys among your audience and have them rate your business according to its "recommendability." You can then use a third-party NPS calclator to get your NPS; generally, the larger your NPS score, the better it is for your brand or business.
Preferably, each social channel should have its own NPS Promoter Score. Tools like Mention provide an easy way with which you can keep track of how the public perceives your brand across multiple social networks.
4. State of Influencers
Influencers are online personalities who have managed to amass a sizable following that they can easily leverage for marketing and knowledge-sharing purposes. In short, these are people who have lots of fans online.
If you're looking into quickly building your brand reach and presence, then using influencers is the way-to-go. Just make sure that the influencer(s) you're working with is within your niche and has a following that is relevant to your brand.
In exchange for free products/services or discount coupons to your store, you can have your chosen influencers feature a post regarding your brand on their social media profile pages. You can also have them review your products, and/or recommend them to their own audience.
Tools like BuzzSumo, GroupHigh, and Traackr can help you get started with finding influencers, as well as maintaining the relationships that you form with them.
5. Social Media ROI
Are your efforts paying off? Does your content strategy lead to conversions? Is your brand enjoying increased sales with the implementation of your campaign?
These are the questions that you need to ask yourself during the course of your social media marketing campaign. You need to take a closer look at your conversions (which can include metrics from subscriptions, number of registrations, and new leads) and see if you're getting your money's worth from each platform that you're on.
In Google Analytics, you can set up UTM URLs for each program so that you can easily see what networks you get the most conversions (thereby, the most value for your money) from. From there, you can determine the overall value of your leads and decide if your current marketing strategy is working or not.
6. Internal Engagement
Most overlook the power of internal engagement in building an online audience. If your employees believe in your brand, then it'll be much easier for you to convince others to do the same.
You can encourage your team to drum up interest for your brand through their own online activities. You can encourage them to interact with your content (tools like Dynamic Signal is great for determining your own team's engagement with your content), or make postings with mentions and tags of your brand.
Just by keeping close watch on these six metrics, you'll be able to optimize your marketing efforts in no time. The sooner you track everything, the sooner that you'll see the pay off from all of the work that you've put into your campaign.