1, 2, 3: Fundamental social media measures that marketers need to track

by dawnsmms13


Social media have graduated from being purely “social” – they’re now an important element in the marketing mix. As a result, businesses expect to see a measureable return on their investment. So which metrics should you be tracking, and why?



You’re reaching out. But are you reaching them?

By definition, one of the most characteristic attributes of social media is their ability to connect people in an organic and pervasive manner: they enable companies to reach more customers and more potential customers. While reach is a relatively basic metric, it indicates whether you’re getting to your audience. (And if you’re not, the other measures don’t matter anyway).



Are you talking at or talking with?

Another key metric is engagement. Once you know you’re reaching your audience, are you getting through with a message that resonates? One of the key benefits of social media over traditional marketing tactics is that they allow businesses to converse with their audience in a measureable way by tracking whether people are responding to content. If the first building block of a social media report is reach, the second is engagement. If you’re connecting and growing your audience but your followers aren’t interested and engaged, it’s time to reexamine your platforms and content.



Reach, engagement, action!

The third key metric is conversion. You know you’re reaching your desired audience and you know you’ve engaged them with relevant content. But is your campaign delivering hard results? Has it moved your followers to take the action you’ve set as a goal? Tools such as Google Analytics allow you to track where your website’s visitors are coming from and which among them have taken the desired action . . . which is the ultimate measure of ROI.



There are many other valuable metrics that businesses should consider, and many knowledgeable bloggers. No matter who you’re reading, though, one thing comes through loud and clear. In today’s business environment, social media campaigns are expected to pay their own way.



Useful resources: How to expand reach; tips on increasing social engagement; ways to improve conversion; top 10 social media blogs