Your company is on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and the list continues. Are your organization's Social Media accounts successful? How do you measure Social Media success? When I hear this question I immediately ask, what is the goal of your Social Media program? Yet seldom receive an answer other than "We need to be there". So my question then is, without a goal, how can you measure success?
The most common mistake when an organization decides to begin their Social Media program is not defining any goals. They feel they just need to be there. But why? Why do you want to be on Facebook? Why are you going to post tweets? Why spend time on Pinterest? Once you have those questions answered, then you need to ask how. How will being on Social Media websites support your organizational goals? How will the organization benefit from a Social Media presence?
Defining the goals of your Social Media program is necessary in order to determine the overall success of the program.
- Build customer loyalty?
- Provide customer support?
- Expand your brand’s awareness and online reach?
- Increase sales?
- Become an industry resource?
Your social media channels can address all of the goals listed above within your content; However, even though you can include content that covers all types of goals, there still should be only one that is the primary focus. For example, you can't focus on sales only and expect to build loyalty. Your fans will be tired of hearing your marketing messages.
Once you have a clear goal for your Social media program, then you can begin strategizing what content, messages, media, etc. will resonate best with your customers and you can set up your baseline metrics. Think of the shift from push to pull marketing. One of the most obvious yet, most common errors that organization’s make is posting what they want to push when really they should be focusing on what their audience wants and then engages with their wants.
The next time the success of your company's Social Media program is brought up in a meeting, make sure to nail down the goals of the program and what the ideal effect of being on the social channels are. From that point, set your benchmarks and metrics. Then and only then can you begin to effectively measure Social Media Success!