Measuring Success in Social Media Marketing: A Guide for Business Owners

As a Google Partner and a social media advertising agency, we often hear business owners ask, “How do we measure the success of our social media marketing?” The answer isn’t always straightforward. Social media metrics are a blend of the tangible and intangible, the easily measurable and the not-so-easily quantifiable. Let’s dive into some strategies and examples to help you navigate this complex landscape.

The Challenge of Measuring Success

Social media doesn’t operate in isolation; it’s intricately linked with your overall business objectives. While some aspects are trackable, others are not. So, how do you measure what seems immeasurable?

Case Study: Growing the Pie at Duke of Brunswick

Imagine you own a gluten-free pub and aim to increase your weekly sales from $30,000 to $35,000. You decide to boost food sales by $1,000 and book two extra functions per week. To achieve this, you introduce gluten-free pies as lunch specials and promote them on social media. The success of this campaign can be measured by the increase in pie sales and overall lunchtime revenue.

The Power of Niching in Social Media

Social media thrives on specificity. The more targeted your audience, the better your results. For instance, running Facebook ads targeting people turning fifty or sixty who are interested in gluten-free living can yield more conversions than a generic campaign.

Case Study: Trading Places in Car Dealerships

If you own a car dealership specializing in Renault vans for tradespeople, you can measure success by tracking monthly inquiries about fleet Renault vans. By focusing your social media advertising on this niche, you can create more targeted and effective campaigns.

Traffic Analysis: Free-Flowing or Gridlocked? 

Monitoring website traffic from various social media channels can provide valuable insights. If your goal is to increase website traffic, compare the current data with past metrics to gauge the effectiveness of your social media content.

Massaging the Measurements: Agency Accountability

Be cautious when agencies offer loose conversion tracking. Ensure that the metrics provided align with completed transactions, not just engagement or form visits.

What Should You Be Looking For?

Soft Metrics vs. Concrete Metrics

While it’s essential to track sales and website traffic, don’t overlook soft metrics like engagement and audience growth. These metrics can offer insights into your long-term strategy and brand cohesion.

Case Study: The Long Game in Social Media

Understanding that social media marketing is a long-term strategy can save you from unrealistic expectations and inadequate budgets. For example, a dental practice aiming for 100 new patients in a month with a limited budget may find themselves disappointed and better suited for a different agency.

Basic Mistakes to Avoid

One common mistake is neglecting to monitor Google Analytics. If you’re not tracking how much traffic comes to your site from social media, you’re missing out on crucial data.

Key Takeaways

  • Success in social media marketing is not always easily measured but can be understood through a combination of soft and concrete metrics.
  • A targeted approach, aligned with your business goals, yields better results.
  • Monitoring both website traffic and conversion metrics is crucial for an outcomes-driven strategy.

Understanding how to measure your social media success can significantly impact your business. By taking a comprehensive approach, you can improve your online activity and, in turn, your bottom line.

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Simone Douglas

Simone is co-founder and Senior Principal Solutions Architect of Digital Marketing AOK. Simone offers over 17 years in corporate management roles encompassing generalist HR recruitment and development of small to large teams across multiple sites, industry sectors and states. Experienced in a variety of social media platforms and their complimentary applications, social media strategy, risk management, disaster recovery and associated HR policies and processes.