Which Social Media KPIs Should I Measure?
Use these four steps to determine which social media KPIs your business should be tracking to ensure you’re meeting your content marketing goals.
Whenever we create content marketing strategies for clients, we always tailor them to align with their specific business goals. So, for example, if a client is interested in getting more leads, we implement a plan designed to convert website visitors into contacts. And, equally importantly, we make sure lead generation is a metric we are constantly measuring.
Social media management is usually an important part of a comprehensive content marketing program. So, too, do we create a social media strategy specifically tailored to a client’s content goals. And this begins with establishing the right social media KPIs (key performance indicators) for those goals.
I wish I could give you a list of metrics that would work for every business. But, of course, it doesn’t work that way. Depending on what you’re looking to accomplish with your marketing plan, you’ll want to strategize, execute, and measure progress accordingly.
To get you started, here are four steps to help you decide which social media KPIs to measure based on your specific content marketing goals.
4 steps to determining your social media KPIs
1) Understand the difference between metrics and KPIs.
According to social media strategist and author of Going Social and Getting to Like Jeremy Goldman, “It’s completely normal to get metrics and KPIs mixed up to some extent.” Metrics, he says, “are simply measurements quantified,” while KPIs are “metrics that you’ve determined are mission critical to your business.”
Why is this distinction important? While we can measure more than ever before, sometimes too many measurements lead to a loss of organizational focus. In fact, Goldman suggests defining relatively few KPIs in order to maintain focus. “The more KPIs your organization has defined, the less focused it likely is.”
2) Define your business’ specific social media marketing goals.
In order to figure out the most relevant performance indicators, you need to establish and document a set of goals for your social media presence. Once you’ve done that, you can select metrics that help you analyze your progress.
For example, if you’re trying to get as many views as possible on your company’s white paper, your best KPIs are probably going to be visits to the lead-gen form connected to the white paper, as well as the total number of white paper downloads.
3) Start with the basics.
What is your organization’s mission statement; what is its reason for being? “It may sound like a lofty place to start,” says Goldman, “but you can’t succeed without an understanding of the firm and where it’s looking to go.”
Once you’ve got a clear idea of your brand and your company’s mission, make sure you have an understanding of your role within the context of the larger organization. Having an understanding of these basics gives you tools to focus on what serves the whole.
4) Survey your metrics.
Take a close look at all the metrics available to you, making sure not to assume everything is important. By the same token, don’t discount a metric that might not seem at face value to be important — be as objective as possible.
Next, you can determine your KPIs. “Break down your list of metrics and pick a few you’re determined to work night and day to measure your success by,” suggests Goldman.
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