How do companies measure their success with social media? What are the best metrics to use?
It would be great if there was an easy answer but the reality is measurement is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. It means each company could have a different set of metrics to assess the performance of their social media programs.
So how do companies select the right metrics? It really depends on its goals and objectives, which, of course, could vary.
Some companies, for example, will be focused on attracting more sales. As a result, the most important metrics could be Web site traffic that generate sales or leads. Other companies may be looking to improve their customer service or solicit feedback to support new product development. This would put the spotlight on metrics such as engagement, conversations and ideas.
The most important consideration is establishing goals and the most relevant metrics when a social media strategic and tactical plan is being created. This provides a benchmark that can be measured against going forward.
For companies that have already embraced social media, they need to examine whether the metrics being used are relevant (if they are, in fact, using metrics) or whether a new set of metrics have to be established.
Once a company has decided on metrics, it becomes important to measure against them on a regular basis. This will, hopefully, provide a company with a good indication of what’s happening, or it will show that maybe the wrong metrics are being used or a new set of metrics needs to be developed to reflect a change in a company’s strategic direction.