Article

Sylvia Jensen
Sylvia Jensen 6 May 2014

Prove ROI from Social Media Engagement

How do you ensure that your social media marketing is worth your investment?

With marketers under unprecedented pressure to prove the value of every marketing pound, here’s how to meet the social media evaluation challenge.

 

Show-Me-the-Money

 

 

Leading marketers expect to devote 9% of their marketing budget to social media in 2014 – and as much as 16% by 2018. It’s not hard to see why. The benefits of using social media are widely acknowledged, such as:

 

  • More business exposure and building of brand awareness.

  • Rise in search engine rankings.

  • Increase in lead generation.

  • Gathering of marketplace intelligence.

  • Reduction in marketing expenses.

 

Research from Oracle Marketing Cloud says that social referral traffic has doubled year on year as marketers have diversified investment in social channels beyond Facebook. And ’influencers’ have the potential to trigger six times more conversions when they share a brand’s content on social channels.

 

 

However, in a recent SelectMinds survey, while 72% of executives regularly use social media for recruitment and 69% for brand engagement and awareness, few can agree when it comes to evaluation best practice – they are far more likely to agree on the impossibility of effectively measuring its ROI.

 

 

ROI from social media engagement – where to begin?

 

An important starting point for any organisation seeking to meet the social media evaluation challenge is to understand the array of tactics already in use to assess what can be improved and how.

 

In the SelectMinds study:

– 86% of respondents maintained a presence on Facebook.

– 82% of respondents maintained a LinkedIn group.

– 71% of respondents maintained a Twitter account.

 

 

Social media was seen as an effective platform:

 

– for communications by 60%.

– for improving brand awareness by 57%.

– for increasing marketing effectiveness by 55%.

 

Evaluation by these companies focused mainly around easy-to-count measures such as:

– hires via social mediaa metric used by 66% of respondents.

– website visitors a metric used by 65% of respondents.

– Facebook fans a metric used by 63% of respondents.

 

 

Only 27% measured cost savings and just 10% measured revenues increased – two bread-and-butter traditional ROI metrics.

 

Use metrics that count

 

According to a recent survey of Chief Marketing Officers, between 2010 and 2013, the percentage of marketers using a revenue-per-customer metric on social media decreased from 17% to 9%. The reason? Growing consensus that traditional ROI metrics alone are not the answer and a belief that those most successfully evaluating their social media are doing so by focusing on tracking audience reach, engagement and sentiment.

 

For example, Facebook ’shares’ are particularly valuable, as normal users’ posts are seen in a relatively high percentage of friends’ newsfeeds when compared to posts by brand pages. Which is why it is important to go beyond top line metrics, to apply analytics across disparate channels to answer key questions such as: what motivates someone to post a Facebook ’like’ then visit your website and make a purchase?

 

Valuable tools at your fingertips

 

Canny organisations understand the plethora of utilities already available to help. For instance:

  • Facebook Page Insights allows users to dig into optimal timings for posts or optimal content formats to maximise engagement.

  • TweetReach enables the user to break down, then compare and contrast impressions, exposure and approximate reach of past tweets.

The moral is simple. It’s not just more data that’s the key to successful social media evaluation but better data. Value, not volume, then, is what will really count.

 

Remember:

 

  • Traditional ROI metrics are not the answer for measuring social media engagement.

  • Focus on tracking audience reach, engagement and sentiment.

  • Apply analytics across social channels, to increase your chances of accurate evaluation.

 

For more essential information on how to run and evaluate successful campaigns, take a look at Oracle Marketing Cloud’s Modern Marketing Charts

Please login or register to add a comment.

Contribute Now!

Loving our articles? Do you have an insightful post that you want to shout about? Well, you've come to the right place! We are always looking for fresh Doughnuts to be a part of our community.

Popular Articles

See all
4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

It goes without saying that a company can't do without digital marketing in today's world.

Digital Doughnut Contributor
Digital Doughnut Contributor 5 November 2014
Read more
Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

What's the difference between digital marketing and traditional marketing, and why does it matter? The answers may surprise you.

Julie Cave
Julie Cave 14 July 2016
Read more
Life of a Twitter Influencer [Infographic]

Life of a Twitter Influencer [Infographic]

The following infographic Illustrates the life of a Twitter Influencer and includes everything from earnings, cheatsheets and social movements started on Twitter. While Twitter may not be the most popular social channel it is still one of the most powerful channels to spark online conversation. If you're a Twitter influencer, this infographic is the ultimate guideline to your future tweets.

Chiara Di Rago
Chiara Di Rago 30 November 2016
Read more
50 Chrome Extensions That Will Boost Your Productivity

50 Chrome Extensions That Will Boost Your Productivity

Today you can find Google Chrome extensions for almost anything that you can think about. In the sea of available extensions, it can be a hustle to choose which one are the best for your type of the business.

Aleksej Durdevic
Aleksej Durdevic 29 November 2016
Read more
Digital Marketing - The Wave of the Future

Digital Marketing - The Wave of the Future

With social media platforms like Facebook holding well over 1.6 billion users world-wide (and counting), these digital platforms have become the new marketplace. In order to properly promote business brands and products or services, an online company needs to employ the services of a specialist known as a digital marketer.

Mohammad Farooq
Mohammad Farooq 29 November 2016
Read more