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What should you measure on social media?

Our friends at The Plan Company invited us to give a talk at the Social Media Marketing Day event held in Barcelona last Saturday. Here you have a summary and the presentation I used about what are the keys to effectively measure your social media efforts.

It is undeniable that we need to measure what an effort costs us. And that effort will not only be in terms of hours of work, but very often also in terms of extra budgets for different advertising formats: a solid strategy that includes platforms such as Facebook will surely include a Facebook Ads budget. If it takes time and costs you money (which is the same thing) it is important to know what you get in return and how you can improve your results.

The first key to measurement for social media is to be clear about the business objectives that we want to achieve, and to know the role of each of our social media platforms as part of the strategy that will lead us to achieve those objectives. A proper definition of objectives, in our opinion, must comply with the SMART rule: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic or Relevant -linked to the business model-, and with a Time to achieve them.

If you have SMART objectives and you are clear about the role of each social media platform in your map, the next step will be to see what metrics of each network can help you build indicators that are really meaningful for decision making: measuring serves to learn what works well, what can be improved and what does not work. Measuring serves to check if the strategy (ZINK) is well translated into actions (DO) and which of those actions work best.


Tips for digital measurement

Throughout the talk I wanted to mention some useful measurement tips that can be applied to digital strategies:

  • Focusing on the interaction generated is better than wanting to post too much. What content do your audiences react best to?
  • Conversion (generally on websites, but also on social media) is much more important than traffic. This does not mean that we cannot measure qualitative traffic achieved, as a first step to improve conversion, especially if the sale is transacted offline.
  • Analysing trends is better than just measuring values: measuring is an going effort to gauge initial assumptions we may make from initial data collected.
  • To measure concepts related to the evolution of the brand on the Internet, or in Online Reputation Management projects, it is almost mandatory to use monitoring tools. We have generated our own methodology to help us in these cases.
  • You can do great things with Excel and patience using free tools, but to avoid wasting time and move faster, it is sometimes best to invest in good tools, especially when benchmarking against competitors.
  • And finally, the best way to study how the different metrics relate to our objectives and, therefore, reveal which social networks, which actions, and which campaigns are helping us best, is to group that information on a dashboard.

At Zinkdo we are clear that the best way to validate our strategies is to measure results, and that measuring implies the humility to correct in order to grow, and also the curiosity not to be complacent and to look for new ways to optimise the results we obtain.

Photo of Víctor at the talk by @raquelcolomina (thank you!)