Measuring Social Media ROI

Social Media ROIAs a marketing manager, we tend to determine campaign success based on ROI. But it seems preposterous to suggest that we put time and money into social media and cannot measure the return on investment (ROI). Some experts believe that discovering social media ROI is an impossibility because it relies on too many intangibles, such as “Likes” and “followers.” However we can estimate campaign success by incorporating reach, time and trust, sentiment, goals, and data.

Total Reach

You need to determine how many people you could potentially connect with on social media. In effect, this equates to the number of Facebook fans and Twitter followers you have. Your content reach is limited only to the amount of friends and followers that people who engage with your brand have. For example, if you have 500 followers on Facebook and Twitter and they have a combined total of 10,000 followers, then your content reach is 10,500.

Likes, Shares, And Retweets

Every single comment, photo, video or post takes a few seconds for a user to digest. It is estimated that the average “like” on Facebook takes 7 seconds per person while close friends of this person will take an average of 5 seconds to digest that “like.”

Also, look at how many friends shared the brand experience. For instance on Facebook, analyse the “comment” to “like” ratio of Posts. While on Twitter, “Retweet” to “Tweet” ratio. The higher these ratios, the better.

Positive & Negative Perception

This is a measure of how your business is perceived on social networks. It can be extremely difficult to measure sentiment although you do need to compare the number of positive and negative mentions. Fortunately, it is possible to get natural language processing tools from a variety of sites online that will quickly and effectively help you discover whether mentions of your company are positive or negative.

Define Your Goals

When it comes to calculating your ROI, focus on what the numbers lead to rather than concentrating solely on the actual numbers. For example, does an increase in website visits actually lead to a higher income? Do people who find your site through social media click on your website’s product pages? You can find all the data you need through the use of Google Analytics, HootSuite, Omniture and other sites of this nature.

Analysing The Data

This is where it gets tough and is also where certain experts suggest that social media ROI can’t be accurately measured. And they have a point because coming up with the dollars and cents of your campaign is virtually impossible to nail down because there is some guesswork involved. For example, if you are measuring ROI through sales, you will need to analyse the metrics from your monitoring tools to see if your level of sales has increased. If it has, you can then look at the number of referrers on your e-commerce site from Twitter or Facebook or the amount of coupons given away in a Facebook offer. Did your website store experience a spike in traffic soon after you posted on Facebook? Is it the case where a high sentiment analysis on Twitter results in better sales?

In the end, it is important to realise that measuring social media ROI is far more complex than the usual cost versus increase in sales equation we are used to measuring. While you can find out if social media is positively impacting your business, it isn’t possible at this point to know its full effect. Consider hiring a Melbourne marketing expert for all your marketing needs, contact for complete marketing solutions.