Measuring Social Media Objectives

eHow Tech Blog

Unless you’ve been living under a very large rock, you know you need to be on social media platforms to market your business or personal brand.  But if you’re like most people, you sign up and then think, “Okay, now what?” Social media marketing requires a time investment, and you want ensure you’re getting a solid return on that investment. Social media metrics can help make sure you’re on the right track.

First things first: What are your objectives?  Trying to increase brand awareness? Drive sales? Improve customer service, or build traffic to your website? Whatever your objective, tools are available to help you monitor and measure your results so you can see how you’re doing and tweak your strategy along the way.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Driving traffic and making sales: If you want to see how much traffic your social media campaigns are generating and how people are finding you, Google Analytics  is your tool.  Create specific offers or information on your website that are only accessible through links you share in social media to track response, or check the “traffic sources” section to see which posts are most popular with your social media followers.  Plus GA can help you track “conversions” if you’re trying to drive purchases — showing you exactly who went from tweet to ka-ching!

Raising brand awareness and influence: Register with Klout  or PeerIndex, and you’ll get a good idea whether you’re a big deal on the internet… or not.  Both of these sites show you how well you influence others, how widespread your “reach” is, and for which topics you’re considered an expert.  Warning: obsessing over your Klout score can be addictive, and something as simple as taking a few days off of Twitter can affect your ranking. Don’t make yourself crazy, but do make sure you’re moving in the right direction.

Listen in on conversations: Just like in the real world, sometimes listening is more valuable than talking.  And when people talk about you, it’s great to have listening tools that find those conversations and allow you to jump in and say hello.  Services like Social Mention or Google Alerts will send you notifications of when you, your brand, or campaign has been mentioned in social or mainstream media. You can create an alert for any term you want, and you can even track what your competition is up to, or who might be talking about any topic you could weigh in on.

New tools constantly are released, each intended to give you a better idea of what you’re doing right and where you’re going wrong. What are some of your favorites?  Let’s build a list in the comments.

Photo Credit: George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images





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