We all talk about why and how it’s important to review the progress of a social media content strategy but what does that actually entail? What does it mean to review or track the progress of a social media strategy?
A good place to start doing this is by identifying certain social media KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). Similar to how we associate KPIs with reviewing annual progress in companies and their employees, social media is no different. Having KPIs for social media is a good place to measure and analyse the impact of the effort put into one’s social media strategy. It is also an opportunity to understand if the social media strategy is in fact in line with the business and marketing goals.
Similar to most KPIs and objectives it is recommended that we adopt SMART goals for social media as well. So what are these SMART goals? Let’s break down this acronym using a series of questions and some examples.
– What are you specifically trying to achieve using your social media?
– What are you specifically trying to measure using this objective?
– For eg: Do you want to increase your brand’s Instagram following from 4,000 – 6,000 followers by the end of the year? Do you want to increase your CTR by 10% by the end of the quarter?
– What tools or metrics are you using to quantify your progress?
– How often do you intend to measure the progress using these tools?
– Eg: Depending on where in the marketing funnel you identify at, are your metrics accurate and is your team able to quantify the progress made? Is it possible to quantify the progress against the investment made on the brand’s social media?
– What is the strength of your team and what are you trying to do with your social media strategy?
– For eg: Can your goals be met with the tools, skillset and resources at hand? If not, are you able to reduce the scope of your goals or increase your access to resources?
– Are your social media goals in line with the business and marketing objectives?
– For eg: If your business objective is to increase the % of sales is your social media strategy focused on conversion?
– Have you set timelines for the individual social media goals and certain markers to meet particular milestones?
– Eg: As discussed in the Specific objective, can the increase in Instagram followers be done within the remaining five months of the year?
However, while these SMART social media goals and KPIs are important, it’s important to keep in mind that they are constantly evolving, which means, a continuous review is important. As always, find out what works, what doesn’t work and where improvement can be made. Ensure that the entire team is aware of these objectives and you are working together as a team towards a common goal. Moreover, the KPIs and goals can change depending on campaigns as well as the different social media channels your brand is using.
So with that said, what are the key social media KPIs that we should be tracking?
To answer this, we are going to break these down by looking at our marketing funnel.
Brand awareness and reach KPIs
- Reach – the total number of people who see your content.
To calculate the post reach:
Measure post reach x 100 = post reach percentage
- Impressions – the number of times your content is displayed, no matter if it was clicked or not.
- Followers – the number of individual profiles that follow your page
- Audience growth rate – how many new followers your brand gets on social media within a certain amount of time.
To calculate the audience growth rate:
Net new followers x 100 = growth rate percentage
(the following are pretty self-explanatory!)
- Click-through rate (CTR) – the ratio of users who click on a specific link to the number of total users who view your page
To calculate CTR:
Total clicks x 100 = CTR percentage
- Cost per click (CPC) – a paid advertising term where an advertiser pays a cost to a publisher for every click on an ad. This is used to determine the costs of showing users ads on search engines, social media platforms and other publishers.
To calculate CPC:
Total ad spend x 1000 = Cost-per-click
Total measured clicks
- Cost per thousand impressions (CPM) – a paid advertising option where companies pay a price for every 1,000 impressions an ad receives.
To calculate CPM:
Total ad spend x 1000 = Cost per thousand
Total ad impressions
- Conversion rate – a measurement that calculates how often your social content starts the process to a conversion event like a subscription, download, or purchase
To calculate the conversion rate:
Conversions x 100 = Conversion rate percentage
But it doesn’t end here! Remember that as we discussed at the beginning, KPIs and goals are constantly evolving. Keep looking for new trends, and new methods and constantly monitoring your analytics to understand what works and what doesn’t. Be open to changing the goals and objectives when needed and don’t be afraid to experiment!