The above is from slide 20 of the Altimeter Group’s deck on Social Business Forecast 2011. The previous slide said that the top thing that corporate social media strategists are focused on in 2011 is creating ROI measurements.
In order to do that, you need to be measuring the right metrics. Look at the above slide and note that the most popular metrics that corp social media strategists are tracking are ones associated with engagement. Now if your goal for using social media is to build engagement, then that’s fine. But if your goal is to generate sales, then measuring your number of Twitter followers is a terribly weak metric to measure.
If you want to improve your ability to measure the value of your social media efforts then start measuring metrics associated with the action you want people to take.
For example, if you want to use your blog as a tool to generate sales, then you need to focus on metrics that are tied to product sales, or interest. Such as, signups for a product demo, number of times you are contacted for more information about a product, downloads of brochures etc associated with the product, referrals from the blog to a specific product page. Or….actual sales generated on the blog.
All of those metrics are tied to the action you want the user to take, buying a product. They all indicate someone that is interested in the product and that indicates a potential customer.
On the flipside, if you are using your blog to generate sales, why measure traffic? Traffic is almost meaningless, you need to measure what people do AFTER they arrive on your blog.
Here’s some examples of picking better metrics:
Notice as you go down that list of metrics, you are getting closer to your actual goal of generating sales. That’s what you need to be striving to do. A lot of the chatter we’ve heard over the past couple of years is about the inability to accurately measure the ROI of social media. A good deal of that isn’t due to deficiencies in the tools, but rather in the measurement process.
Put your metrics on trial, and make sure that you are measuring what you should be.
BTW need help designing a better measurement program for your social media efforts? Check out my social media training options.